Episode 26 – Ron Seigneur


Ron clowns his way to better business relationships

 

When he isn’t writing a children’s book, grilling some delicious pork chops or being a clown in Denver’s Distinguished Clown Brigade, Ron Seigneur is a highly regarded business valuation expert. In this episode, we talk about how much accounting has become a people-based business, so having hobbies and passions outside of work really helps develop those connections.

As Partner, he also looks for people with hobbies and passions because these well-rounded individuals are probably also better at writing and speaking to clients. Having all the technical knowledge won’t get you far when you want to generate business.

Ron is the managing partner with Seigneur Gustafson LLP in Denver, CO. He is past chair of the AICPA Accredited in Business Valuation committee and NACVA’s Professional Standards Board. He is an adjunct professor at the University of Denver College of Law where he teaches leadership and management for law firms.

Ron holds a BA in Hotel Restaurant and Institutional Management from Michigan State University and an MBA in Accounting and Corporate Policy from the University of Michigan.

 

Other pictures of Ron

(click to enlarge)

Ron (left) poses with two other members of the Distinguished Clown Brigade.
The Distinguished Clown Brigade poses one last time before a recent Parade of Lights in Denver, CO.

 

Ron always makes sure to stay hydrated on the golf course.

Ron’s French Bulldog desperately wanted to be on the show, too.

Being raised in with a father in the restaurant business means Ron has learned from the best. One of his favorites is this delicious pork chop recipe.

Ron’s culinary skills aren’t only showcased on the grill. He also makes great salads.

Ron’s links

 

Transcript

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    John: Welcome to Episode 26 of the Green Apple Podcast. Now, if you haven’t done so already, please take 60 seconds to do my anonymous survey about employee engagement by going to greenapplepodcast.com and you click the big green button there. It’s only a few questions because I know you’re super duper busy but the more data points I have the more legit my research so I really, really appreciate it.

    And now let me introduce you to this week’s guest who’s a very busy man himself, Ron Seigneur. He’s a partner with Gustafson, a Denver-based firm focused on valuation and litigation support services. And I first met Ron when I spoke at the AICPA’s Forensics conference and I’m so happy he’s able to be on the show because he’s a big deal. Having been past chair of the AICPA Accredited in Business Valuation committee and everybody that meets him loves him and I know you’re going to as well. And all of these from someone with a BA in Hotel Restaurant and Institutional Management from Michigan State and later an MBA in Accounting University of Michigan

    So Ron, with an undergrad degree in Hotel Restaurant Management, I love to ask this question but it’s even more necessary with you, how did you even get into accounting?

    Ron: That’s a great question. I grew up in rural Michigan. My parents owned some restaurants and had a restaurant equipment business. And I graduated one high school town and went off to Michigan State, got a degree in Hotel Restaurant Management. I started out as a pre-med student but then I got to organic chemistry and determined that I wasn’t going to be a doctor so I changed my major about halfway through college and did the five-and-a-half-year plan which is cool.

    But I got a degree in Hotel Restaurant Management thinking I was going to go back and work in the family business but just as I’m graduating, my dad and my two uncles were having a little bit of a fight over the ownership of the business and I decided to go a different direction. So I went out and got into airline catering in Phoenix but my roommate ate Michigan State graduated with a degree in Economics and went to work for a CPA firm and had become a CPA in a suburb of Detroit.

    And when I decided I didn’t want to work in the hospitality business, I was looking at him and I was probably 22 at the time and he was a professional and he’s wearing a suit and tie every day, and I was always pretty good with numbers. So he was the one that kind of inspired me to go back to school and get to an MBA with and emphasis in Accounting and pursue a career in accounting. So I did that based upon my Michigan State roommate. He now lives out here in Denver and we continue to be best friends. He was best man in my wedding and we’ve known each other for like 40 years now so it’s really cool.

    John: That’s great, man. Yeah and I saw you with an undergrad in Michigan State and then the MBA at Michigan. Did they not look at your application properly?

    Ron: I have a hat, it’s called “House Divided” on one side, it has the Michigan logo on the other side as this party and it’s made for like couples that are Spartans and Wolverines. I grew up just outside of Ann Arbor so when I went Michigan State people were going “Hey, dude, Michigan State”–

    John: Yeah, traitor.

    Ron: But what I did learn is both did not like Ohio State so Wolverine or Spartans… and don’t ask me about the NCAA basketball tournament–

    John: Oh, no, that’s all right, that’s all right. I don’t know what happened either. I know that obviously being a manager partner of a firm keeps you very, very busy but what is it that you like to do and I know you have several hobbies or passions outside of work.

    Ron: There’s a lot of things I like doing, I kind of dabble in some hobbies. I like to cook. I grew up obviously in the restaurant business and part of my training at Michigan State was going through some culinary classes and I actually worked the last couple of years in college as an apprentice chef in East Lansing. So I’ve got a little bit of training enough to be dangerous in the kitchen. So I do a lot of cooking and I like that, I like experimenting with cooking stuff. I also garden a bit and I do some woodworking stuff. I built my back deck and patio and some things in my house, some skills that I think I learned from my dad, that kind of keep me busy and allow me to get away from work, so to speak, when I come home at the end of the day.

    John: Right, that’s great. There’s something that your favorite to cook?

    Ron: Yeah. I like to grill but that’s going to just…

    John: As a man.

    Ron: Yeah, it’s a manly thing. But Creole pork chops is a recipe that my wife introduced to but I kind of helped perfect that. It seems like the new fad food in a lot of restaurants is brussels sprouts and we’ve found a place here in Denver that serves what we think are just the most amazing brussels sprouts. So I’ve been experimenting recently to try to replicate that recipe, so I think I’ve got the brussels sprouts down.

    John: Oh, nice. And my wife tries to do the same thing and it’s hilarious. I’m like “Why don’t we just go get them?” There’s a pizza place near us in Brooklyn that we’re trying to get the sauce figured out. Well, that’s so cool, man, that’s great, that’s very good.

    Ron: Another thing, John, that I’ve been kind of dabbling with but I think I’m starting to get more passion about is writing things. I’ve done a lot of technical and professional writing and teaching and that’s been really helpful for me in terms of kind of building my brand and my reputation for my work life. But I’ve just decided I want to write some other things, so I’ve got two books that I’m working on. One is called Pathways to Tomorrow and it’s kind of like helping people my age, kind of the baby boomers, that are trying to figure out how to gracefully make their exit from their work, and I’ve got kind of an outline of chapters that I’m working on in that book.

    And the other that I’m really excited about is Sayings of our Elders that I’m working with my daughter and it’s intended to be a children’s book that will emphasize some of the sayings that I grew up with my grandparents and my parents hearing a thing like “A stitch in time saves nine”. You tell that to a younger person today and they go “What? What are you talking about?”

    John: “Can I text that?”

    Ron: That’s back when people were darning socks, and patch that hole up before it gets bigger. Or my dad used to say when I was helping him out as a young tyke I’d be schlepping tools for him and he’d be frustrated because something wouldn’t work, and then finally it’d come together and he’d say “Now we’re cooking with gas.” They grew up just after the Depression and if you had a gas stove it was like wow, that’s the big deal.

    John: Yeah, you’re from the future.

    Ron: Yeah. I’ll tell you as a cook, gas stoves are important to me too but that was like when something came together my dad would say “Now we’re cooking with gas.” You say that to a younger person today and they look at you like “What are you talking about?”

    John: Why don’t you just put in the microwave, that takes too long. No, that sounds cool, man, those are great ideas.

    Ron: So we’ve got a whole list that we keep building and I keep writing stuff down. And my daughter who’s 30, she’s a very good artist so she’s intending to do some graphical stuff and we’re going to just have pages where we can kind of graphically explain what things like “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket”, what it means and then maybe people can kind of share with their kids or grandkids kind of pass some of those things along.

    John: Yeah. I’m sure you’re mid-conversation you’re like, “Oh, I just said one of them”

    Ron: There you go.

    John: Yeah. And then I saw the pictures that you sent of probably one of the neatest things just do with your clown activities.

    Ron: Yeah. I was asked a few years ago to join something called The Distinguished Clown Brigade which is really supposed to be a secret society so I think I’m not supposed to be talking about it but I will, because it’s really cool, I really enjoy the experience.

    The Downtown Denver Partnership which is the non-profit organization that’s focused on promoting Denver sponsors a Parade of Lights every December, for the first weekend in December, where we light up the big Christmas tree. It’s a parade that Santa’s on a float at the end but there’s fire trucks and marching bands. Several years ago, the group that — and they’ve been doing that parade for like 40-plus years — I said “We need some clowns” so the Board of the Downtown Denver Partnership worked with the Performing Arts Center to do the costumes and the art work and they marched as clowns. And then they said “That was so fun, let’s go and invite a friend.”

    So it’s kind of grown from that to where last year I think we had about 50 clowns and we all go down on the first Friday of December and it’s all set up for you. You pick out your costumes and you show up a month or two before, they make sure they fit right, they’ve got all the green hair and whatever you want to do with it, your little ornament, and then the day of we show up and the people from the Denver Center for the Performing Arts come over and they do all the makeup. So we show up, we put the clown suits on, we’re getting made up, and then we go out we take part in the parade.

    I sent you one of those pictures, I’m in both pictures I think to the left of the group, so you’ve got something there you can share if appropriate.

    John: Yeah, absolutely. We’ll have them on greenapplepodcast.com, people can check them out online.

    So do you have clown training or really just good at walking around and squirting the flowers?

    Ron: I chuckled when you asked that question because you have to go through clown training, you have to learn the three rules of being a clown as they were explained to me. And one is you can’t throw candy into the crowd because there’s too many lawyers in the world and you might poke somebody’s eye out and then the group gets sued, so you can’t do that.

    The second is if you approach someone you see fear in their eyes. Because when we march it’s about a three-mile loop through downtown Denver and when the weather is nice there’s a quarter-of-a-million people that come out. They bring their families out and it’s a wonderful experience. And we’re bopping through the streets and doing high fives and fist bumps with everybody and 99% of the people are just delighted to see the clowns. But you can walk up occasionally to somebody and there’s just a fear in their eyes, that they’re just deathly afraid of clowns. So the second rule we don’t have time for clown therapy when we’re going through the parade so if you approach someone and you can see that look in their eyes just back off and don’t try to change them.

    John: Yeah, don’t engage.

    Ron: And the third was keep your hands where people can see them because we don’t want to be accused of like any groping clowns.

    John: Oh, yeah. So those are the clown rules, there you go. And then just smile a lot, go nuts.

    Ron: Smile and have a blast.

    John: Yeah, that’s so funny, man. That’s great, that’s such a cool thing, that really is such a cool thing.

    Ron: John, I will tell you though, I reconnected with someone I graduated with from high school in 1971, and she now lives in Southern California and she is a professional clown. She actually travels primarily in the summer and she has a trailer and she goes from fairs to all kinds of events and she’s the one that can like juggle and do balloon hats and those types of things. So we’ve reconnected because she’s very impressed that I’ve gotten in the clowning realm.

    John: Yeah, that’s great! Did you guys share your top three rules or…?

    Ron: I haven’t talked to her about that but I’m sure she would agree with them.

    John: She’s probably got about 30. That just sounds so cool, being part of that parade, and in the community and things like that, benefiting a group cause. Yeah, that’s very cool.

    I guess what might be maybe one of the most rewarding or coolest things that you’ve gotten to do through one of your hobbies and maybe it is that parade.

    Ron: Just meeting people, just getting comfortable talking to strangers. A lot of what I’ve done with my professional career is public speaking. I teach a law school class that I’ve taught for two decades so I’m very comfortable in front of people and big crowds like the thing you spoke at, we had roughly a thousand people there. I’ve done presentations for small groups and families and I’ve done presentations in front of 600, 700, 800 people. And I think it’s just helped me because I was the guy that at an 8th Grade speech class, when I had to do a two-minute speech, I just stayed home ill because I couldn’t do it because I was deathly afraid of getting out and speaking to other people.

    So I think it’s really helped me to just feel comfortable when I’m up in public whether it’s clowning around or on a golf course with people I don’t know, or whatever it might be, it’s really helped me to not be kind of… I’m an extrovert, I know that, and I think a lot of the things I’ve known have helped me to excel at being an extrovert.

    John: Right, right. And maybe it’s even just being more comfortable with yourself and more confident in yourself and then that allows you to… I’ve experienced that myself, just oh, yeah, what I am doing is good and being more confident in that and then that allows me to be able to open up to groups easier.

    Ron: It’s helped me at work, too. I enjoy mentoring people that I work with and helping them to build their own brand, that’s kind of a passion for me workwise is helping what I call the next generation to kind of build their own identity and their own brand and find something. To me you got to be something other than just billing hours, whether it’s writing articles or getting involved in a nonprofit, just do something to do something to give yourself a well-rounded professional life because it will pay dividends when you need it, kind of step into a leadership position or originate work.

    John: Yeah, that’s fantastic. Is there anything specific that you or the firm does to encourage people?

    Ron: Well, we try to give them a lot of support to help them do whatever they want to do and try to keep at it to make sure they’re doing something. My attitude has been the firm will support you if you, the individual, are willing to make what I call the “shared sacrifice” to build your brand. What that means is if you want to get involved with something, we’ll help you but you’ve got to do some of it on your own in terms of maybe instead of going home every day and not thinking about work, going home and working at an article, or taking someone to lunch or dinner or something that is kind of off the clock, so to speak.

    John: Yeah, that’s very cool, just that tone at the top I think really helps as well to kind of create that culture, that people know that this is a place where that’s encouraged. So I think that that’s an excellent thing, I think that’s really cool. Because sometimes something that I kind of struggle with is kind of on that spectrum of there are companies that have a culture where this is just the way it is, but then also how much of it is on the individual to step up and share and open up and share their passions and hobbies and what they are interested in. I don’t know, I’m not sure which is the right answer. Do you have any thoughts on that?

    Ron: A thought that comes to mind is having a 20-person firm, it’s hard for us to compete for talent with the big firms because they are flashy and they’ve got internal training programs and a lot of things that we don’t have. But what we offer is a lot of diverse opportunities but the key thing that I think of when we’re talking about this, John, is we allow our staff to have a lot of client interaction and a lot of client contact a lot earlier than my sense that many big firms where it’s like if you are willing and able it’s like I’d just as soon have you talk to the client and you communicate with them. Because I think that’s the rewarding part of what we do because I see other firms where the staff is like “Oh, no, no, no, let me talk to the clients.” But we take them into meetings and try to encourage them to kind of run with the ball and I think that really helps us to inspire people and retain people because they get a lot more client interaction earlier on than they do generally speaking in larger farms.

    John: Right, yeah. And I’m sure that they see how these hobbies and passions help you with those client relationships, then they can see there is a benefit to these, sharing these things with clients and getting to know the clients better helps you serve them better.

    Ron: We do it with some forethought. When we have key clients I try to make sure that they’re lined up with somebody that they’ll appreciate working with and we have clients that is like “No, I can’t throw that client”– there are times I would, why don’t I just give this client to my staff because they’re a pain in the ass and I don’t want to deal with them — it’s more like clients that can help me inspire my staff by them kind of making a relationship with them

    John: Yeah, that’s great. Because I’d imagined that you do talk about some of these hobbies at work, I would have to imagine.

    Ron: Yeah. We’re kind of a family. We all talk about stuff and what we’re doing. A lot of us have pets, I’ve got a French bulldog who’s sitting by my feet right now, happy that I’m home, she doesn’t want to go outside. We talk about our pets and our kids and the things we do. A lot of us are into music, some of us are into sports, and so we share those types of things.

    John: Right. And so I guess I mean because throughout your career having worked at several different places, do you feel like this open environment and the sharing helps with those relationships?

    Ron: Oh, yeah, absolutely! It’s kind of nice because in public accounting it’s a people-based business and relationships are everything so having people that are able to communicate… One of the things that we look for when we hire people is people that have good verbal and writing skills because it seems like there’s a lot of folks — and I was probably that way when I came out of college, they have great technical skills. They can do Excel pivot tables to make people’s heads spin. But when you ask them to write up a memo or call and speak to someone, it’s like they kind of freeze up. So we try to excel, we try to make people more comfortable to do that generally speaking.

    John: Right, and I guess people that maybe have hobbies and passions outside of work tend to be a little more well-rounded in that area as well, I think. So that’s a good point that I never really thought about, that yeah, so I mean that is a cool thing. So people that are doing those things but they’re not sharing, well then they’re putting on a front that isn’t accurate or even good because then you’re like, oh, all this person knows is technical stuff. It’s like no, no, there’s other stuff.

    Ron: And our profession littered with people that are just accounting geeks and that’s great because they’re really good at what they do professionally. But I kind of look at them and I go “It’s kind of a little sad that you’re not doing other things.”

    A colleague, Kevin Yeanoplos, who I know has also done one of your podcasts, he and I communicate often. We had talked just the other day it’s like a lot of people are like “Tomorrow I’m going to lose weight; tomorrow I’m going to take up that hobby; tomorrow I’m going to take that trip that I’ve been looking at taking” and then tomorrow never comes.

    John: Absolutely, yeah. And it is so frustrating because yeah, you see those people, they have every accounting FASB memorized or whatever but they’re a dime a dozen, there’s tons of them out there and there’s only one that I know that is clowns and an apprentice chef and likes to garden and also really good at accounting and that’s you. That’s the thing that it’s like just in case you were like “Wait, who is that guy?”

    Ron: Is that me?

    John: Yeah, yeah. That’s the thing is there’s only one of those and if you don’t let that out, you’re just like everybody else. So I guess maybe when you think back to maybe when you started early in your career or when you see some new people on the firm, what might be some barriers that keep people from sharing right away?

    Ron: A lack of self-confidence. They may have come from either the way they were brought up or other work experiences where they haven’t been able to run with the ball, or make mistakes without being overly criticized for it. And I think younger folks, I also am a big believer that generally speaking the younger people that are in my firm don’t want to be like me, they don’t want to work as hard, and God bless them for that. Because there’s times when I five, ten years ago was really frustrated when I look at younger people, I was like “Dammit, why don’t you want to be like me?” and it’s kind of like “Why don’t you want to work hard?” And it’s like “No, Ron, we want to go do other things. We want to go home or ride our bike” or whatever, and now all of a sudden as I’m rolling through my 60s I’m starting to say maybe they have it right and I’ve had it wrong,

    John: Yeah. I remember when I worked corporate and I used to always refer to comedy as my career and accounting was my job. And I had a manager that could not understand that for anything. And it was really funny to me but it was just the way you think about things, there are other things that are I still did a great job and was really good at what I did but you can have other things as well. Some people can have more than one thing, it depends on your ability to get stuff done.

    Ron: Absolutely. In our firm, we’ve evolved to where we have a lot of part-time contract people that work with us. And it was really frustrating because my main partner and I were always like “We need to hire people and they need to be here every day and they didn’t show up between…” We think we’re flexible because we let them come in between like 7:30 or 9:00 and that was our image of being flexible. But what we’ve learned is being flexible is like “No, I only want to work 20 hours a week”, so we started to learn that. They’re good people and they can meet their responsibilities, we’re fine if they want to work remotely and work contract. And so I’m in Denver, Colorado and I’ve got someone that I work with on a regular basis that’s on South Carolina and she and I work really well together. I’ve got another person in Olympia, Washington, that we do contract work for and I’ve got a couple of people locally that they want to travel with their family and their husband and they don’t necessarily need to work full-time but they’re really competent and sharp people and they’ve got other things going on. So it’s like hey, if we can make it work in terms of deadlines and responsibly, I’m fine to just work with folks like that.

    John: Yeah, and that’s great too because then that encourages that it’s okay to have something else outside of work that takes up time. So that’s really cool, man, that’s so cool.

    So I guess do you have any words of encouragement for people that are listening that are maybe on the fence or not quite sure that they should share their passions at work?

    Ron: Don’t wait till tomorrow and just do it. Find something that you’re passionate about and do it. And get off the grid, find some things that are important to the individual and figure out how to make it happen, and don’t put it off too long. It might just be spending more time with your family but if that’s what you want to do, just figure out how to make it happen. I think there are too many people, they don’t step back and assess where they’re at. Maybe have a plan.

    Here’s a tip. I’ve developed a bucket list several years ago, after the movie, and I actually have a Word document and I’d be happy to send it to you. It’s my own personal bucket list. And I add things to it, I look at it maybe once or twice a year, but it’s like places I want to travel to–

    John: Sure. “Meet John Garrett”, check. No, I’m just kidding.

    Ron: Precisely! So I’ll put that on, put a check next on. I was just in Atlantis in NASA, I’ll say did that. I wanted to go, they have a thing in Bahamas where you get to swim with wild pigs. It’s when pigs can swim, there’s actually a website, and there’s a remote key in the southern part of the Bahamas where they have these feral pigs that swim out in the water. You can go out there and swim with them like stingrays kind of thing.

    John: Yeah, you just want one of those for your pork chops, that’s what you’re thinking about.

    Ron: I want to do it so I could say I did it, so I can have some pictures… but I couldn’t quite make that work the last trip I was down there but that’s the kind of thing I’m always like curious about things like that.

    John: Right, that is so fantastic, man. And just from your perspective, such a long career and how you’ve seen things change, how that’s really benefited your career as well, so it’s very encouraging to hear.

    Well, I feel like we’ve gotten to know you really well but I have my 17 rapid fire questions that maybe you should use the next time you’re interviewing the new kids, makes the interview process so much faster. But here we go, Star Wars or Star Trek?

    Ron: Star Wars.

    John: Cats or dogs?

    Ron: Definitely dogs.

    John: Oh, yeah, you have one right there on your feet. Sudoku or crossword puzzle?

    Ron: Crossword puzzle.

    John: Interesting. Jeans or khakis?

    Ron: Khakis.

    John: Nice. Balance sheet or income statement?

    Ron: Income statement. That’s an interesting question for me.

    John: Yeah, yeah, these are silly, huh. Do you have a favorite band?

    Ron: That’s a loaded question. I’m going to see next week The Who, they’re on their 50th year tour. And then two days later I’m going to see Bruce Springsteen and I’m really excited about that because we have really good seats for Bruce Springsteen. So I love music, I love country western music, I’m passionate about going to Nashville once or twice a year. And I’ll tell you this, I live three miles from Red Rocks. Have you ever gone there, John?

    John: I haven’t been there for a concert but I’ve been there when I was–

    Ron: Put that on your bucket list. Come on out and I’ll take you to a concert because that is the most amazing outdoor venue for music on the planet, in my humble opinion.

    John: Yeah, it looked awesome with the city back and behind it. Oh, man, it was really cool. Okay, so you have a movie that makes you cry? Hopefully it’s not Patch Adams, just kidding.

    Ron: I can’t think of anything that makes me cry.

    John: Or how about a favorite movie?

    Ron: I just saw The Intern, I really like that movie, that was a great kind of cross generational movie.

    John: All right, that’s a good one. Do you have a favorite number?

    Ron: I’d say probably 7.

    John: Is there a reason?

    Ron: No, it makes me think of John Elway and the Denver Broncos. I’m a big Bronco fan. We’re trying to figure out who our quarterback’s going to be so I don’t know–

    John: Yeah, it might be you.

    Ron: It could be.

    John: Do you have a least favorite vegetable?

    Ron: I like vegetables, I eat a lot of vegetables. I have a good friend, he doesn’t eat any vegetables at all. I also have a friend, not to get too far, that is a vegetarian but she makes one exception — she eats bacon. The only meat that she’ll eat is bacon. And that’s a good — you can have one exception. I’m a no meat rule so bacon would be it.

    John: Bacon does make everything better, it really does.

    Ron: I’m probably not really fond of cauliflower but it’s all good if it’s made right.

    John: Yeah, if you put enough bacon with it, right?

    Ron: There you go, yeah.

    John: How about a PC or Mac?

    Ron: PC.

    John: Right click or left click?

    Ron: Left click.

    John: Do you have a favorite color?

    Ron: Probably yellow.

    John: Yellow, all right. And a least favorite color?

    Ron: No, I don’t really have any big issues with colors.

    John: Yeah, I guess as a clown you have to like them all.

    Ron: Yeah, I like colorful things.

    John: How about a favorite adult beverage?

    Ron: I do like vodka martinis but I also like really good single malt scotch. And talking about hobbies I have a good friend who’s a CPA and I’ve known him for many years and he collects single malt scotch. He lives on the other side of a town here in Denver but he has 670 different varieties of single malt scotch.

    John: Whoa, that’s a good friend to have right there.

    Ron: He turned his base into an Irish pub so it’s always nice to go out and visit my friend, play balls, because he has like the most amazing hobby that I appreciate whenever I have an opportunity to visit.

    John: Yeah, we actually had Jason Kalies was on the podcast and he’s another… He’s younger though so he doesn’t have that many, but yeah, he’s a Scotch connoisseur of sorts.

    Ron: Good, like a Log of Yule in 16 years, like to die for. That might be my favorite beverage.

    John: Nice. Do you have a favorite actor or actress?

    Ron: Bill Murray, who I think is underappreciated, from everything, from St. Vincent to… I mean he’s done some really good and everybody thinks of him for like Stripes and those kinds of movies, but I mean he’s really, really accomplished so I appreciate his stuff. What About Bob?, remember that movie?

    John: Oh, that’s a great movie.

    Ron: Or The Royal Tenenbaums?

    John: Another great movie, yeah. And an underappreciated movie.

    Ron: I’ll go with Bill Murray on that one.

    John: Yeah, that’s a good answer. Two more, pens or pencils?

    Ron: Oh, geez. Pens, but it’s always amazing when I pick up like a number 2 lead pencil because it makes me think back to being younger when it’s like “hey, that’s kind of cool, I’m writing with a number 2 lead pencil.” Now if I can just find a pencil sharpener.

    John: Right, right. And the last one, what’s the favorite thing you own?

    Ron: My French bulldog is one but the thing that I really have, it’s sitting in my office, is I have a coin that was minted, has metal in it that was part of Apollo 17 that landed on the moon. So I have a coin that has some alloy in it that was actually on the moon and I just think that’s a really cool thing. Somebody sent that to me for my 50th birthday and it’s like wow, I could hang out my hand if I had something that was on the moon.

    John: That is awesome, yeah, that is very cool, man, very cool. Well thank you so much, Ron, for taking the time to be with me on the Green Apple Podcast.

    Ron: It’s been fun, John.

    John: Oh, man, I love how Ron said that accounting is a people-based business and relationships are everything. I mean, what a great message that I wish universities and schools would encourage more.

    Now if you’d like to see some links and pictures of Ron as a clown, go to greenapplepodcast.com and then click the big green button while you’re there and do my anonymous survey. Now, thank you so much for listening and sharing this with your friends and I’ll wrap this up so you can go out and be a green apple.


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