Edition #21 – Barry McCarthy answers 7 questions

by | Jul 7, 2022

1. Why are you an author?

I never thought I would write a book, let alone be asked to write a book on behalf of Deluxe, but I was in a unique position to provide my insights on how to help small businesses run better. I was in this unique position for two reasons: first, Deluxe, the company I am CEO of, has been working with and helping small businesses for 107 years so we have learned a thing or two.

We started a show that aired on Hulu called Small Business Revolution where we help small businesses in communities across the country with business makeovers. Those stories, along with my own history as an entrepreneur and business leader made the right fit to write a book.

2. Who are your literary inspirations?

I am an avid reader of books by business leaders. People like Adam Grant, Philip Kottler, Keith Ferrazzi and James C. Collins have been guiding forces for me as literary greats.

Their insights, thoughtful approach and attention to detail makes their story-telling so compelling. I don’t have a lot of time to read in my role, but I try to keep up with the latest innovations.

3. What is your writing routine?

That is a hard one to answer. As President and CEO of Deluxe, my time to sit down and write it very limited.

For this book, my process came down to when I could find time. I relied on a great internal team to help me with research and interviews, and then I was able to spend time late at night and early mornings to put my thoughts together. I would say I am more deadline focused.

If you give me a deadline to hit, I will allot my time accordingly to hit my timeline.

Outside of the book, I work closely with my communications team at Deluxe to help provide me an outline or the start of communication and then I make it my own. I like to put my own thoughts and spin on the things we share with our teams.

4. Why did you write this book?

Small Business Revolution
By Barry McCarthy

I was approached by Wiley Publishing when I gave a speech at a Dreamforce conference run by Salesforce. Our show, Small Business Revolution, was the No. 1 lifestyle program on Hulu when it debuted.

Our publishers thought we could take the insight from the show, along with Deluxe’s deep history helping small businesses, and put together a self help book for small business owners that offered valuable, insightful tips that truly come from our own history, but also from the business owners we worked with during the show.

And frankly, I felt like I had something to share from my own history working with small business owners that would be compelling for our readers.

5. What were the biggest obstacles in writing this book? 

Time was the biggest obstacle.

As I mentioned previously, my role as President and CEO of a Fortune 1000 company left me precious little time to write a book. Once we signed on with Wiley, we had deadlines to meet so it became real and I had to hit those deadlines.

We went through several drafts and found the right fit and structure overall. And the second obstacle was just determining what to keep in the book and what to take out.

We had so much content, the challenge became what is most relevant for our readers and what can help them grow and thrive.

6. What are the key points of the book?

This book is a step-by-step guide for small business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs to help their business thrive and grow. We help business owners determine how to get their expenses in order and master new management tools.

We also ask hard questions about whether you should be in business or not! Some business owners need to determine if what they are doing is a hobby, or is it a true business.

We look at managing and maintaining customer relationships, managing a workforce and managing your cash flow. And most importantly, you will receive anecdotes from real business owners from communities across the country who have used our ideas, products and services to great results.

7. Where may we find you online?