Michael Roub is the Managing Partner and founder of Inflection 360. He has more than two decades of business expertise as a strategic advisor and consultant, corporate executive, and investment banker. Michael has extensive experience with corporate development, mergers and acquisitions, and capital raising and has worked extensively with dental and medical groups and private equity backed-platforms.
Prior to starting Inflection 360, Michael had senior business development roles at Western Dental Services and US HealthWorks. He also spent several years developing and operating multiple multi-specialty surgical centers in Southern California. Michael began his career as an investment banker with Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette where he advised clients on a wide range of capital raising, M&A and restructuring efforts.
Michael earned a BS in Economics from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
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Table of Contents
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?
Michael Roub: I started my career as an investment banker and worked on a number of transactions, including initial public offerings, debt capital raising, restructuring, and mergers & acquisitions. After leaving the world of banking, I held senior finance and corporate development roles in a number of healthcare businesses. In my last corporate role as VP of Business Development at Western Dental Services, I recognized that many of the dental groups that we looked to acquire were not receiving adequate advice prior to or during a transaction process. From this realization, I founded Inflection 360 to provide investment banking-level and strategic and transactional expertise to businesses that could not afford this level of service when working with larger firms.
Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?
Michael Roub: When I was hired as VP of Business Development at US HealthWorks in 2008, it was my first role leading acquisitions for a large corporation. Our CEO, Dan Crowley, gave me the opportunity to make the role my own, including establishing processes and working with our due diligence and integration team throughout each acquisition. I left US HealthWorks to pursue other opportunities, but in 2017 when Western Dental was looking for someone to be their first VP of Business Development, I was contacted.
Dan Crowley had become Western’s CEO a few years earlier and he had faith in me to lead this effort. While at Western Dental, I was able to shape M&A within the organization and establish myself as an expert in the dental spaces. Today, many Inflection 360 clients are dental groups and other healthcare service organizations.
What are the most common mistakes you see entrepreneurs make and what would you suggest they do?
Michael Roub: Many entrepreneurs and other business leaders commonly make the mistake of seeking perfection before moving forward. Whether building the perfect product, ensuring that marketing materials are perfect, or having a fully built out team, entrepreneurs that wait until they have everything figured out may never be able to move a business forward. Mark Cuban has a great quote, “Perfection is the enemy of success.” I think this is a great quote for any entrepreneur to post above their desk to ensure they keep moving forward. You need to make mistakes, be challenged, and learn along the way to be successful.
Resilience is critical in critical times like the ones we are going through now. How would you define resilience?
Michael Roub: Resilience is fighting through failure, setbacks and challenges to move forward – whether in business or in life. Leaders may face crises that risk the future of the company, employees may lose their job, personal issues could impact work performance or financial stability. Struggling and failing is ok. But, more importantly, the ability to persevere and continue on to obtain your goals and find success (as defined by you) is what I consider to be resilience.
In your opinion, what makes your company stand out from the competition?
Michael Roub: Inflection 360 was formed to be different than other strategic consulting and advisory firms. From day one, Inflection 360 looks to take a very hands-on approach in working with leadership teams to help them obtain successful outcomes. Inflection works closely with client leadership to build the right strategic plans, to identify and acquire the right businesses, and to provide actionable advice.
All of this requires being intimately aware of the strengths of the client’s team, the gaps in their organization, and a willingness to put in the hard work to achieve long-term success. Inflection 360 employs the skills of leading investment banking and consulting firms to provide its clients with superior expertise and results.
What do you consider are your strengths when dealing with staff workers, colleagues, senior management, and customers?
Michael Roub: I think it is critical to understand each of the strengths and weaknesses of staff, colleagues, management and customers. You also should learn what interests beyond current roles interest these individuals to determine additional opportunities for success. In addition, understanding current responsibilities that these individuals do not want to have on their plate is also valuable.
With staff and colleagues, having this insight enables you to find opportunities for growth of existing staff and also uncover gaps in the current team that need to be addresses with current staff or may require a new hire. With clients that are looking for business guidance, it is my role to identify where they have opportunities to improve but also to take focus away from unimportant tasks. Looking to achieve efficiency requires you to understand people’s current strengths and what will inspire them to move forward.
How important do you think it is for a leader to be mindful of his own brand?
Michael Roub: I think it is critical to be mindful of your brand. You can have a view of what your brand should be, but you also need to be aware of how you are perceived by others. If you present yourself as a strategic expert but others feel you are a good worker but not a leader, then there are challenges. How you communicate, in writing, in everyday conversation and in more professional forums, greatly impacts the authenticity of your brand. Understand what you want to be and how to live and breathe that brand.
How would you define “leadership”?
Michael Roub: Leadership to me is working to achieve the best possible results – even if the outcome ultimately isn’t successful. Empowering people when appropriate, pushing people to grow, making a critical pivot when something is not going as planned, admitting mistakes, and learning along the way are all critical points of leadership. People want to know they can count on you to provide direction and move the business forward, regardless of the obstacles ahead.
What advice would you give to our younger readers that want to become entrepreneurs?
Michael Roub: While each entrepreneurial journey is different, I find that those who are ultimately most successful are passionate about their goals, business and/or mission. However, they must also recognize whether there is truly a market for their product or services. While many entrepreneurs are able to identify the market potential, others should seek the input of others that can provide insight. A trusted advisor or mentor can be an invaluable asset to an entrepreneur to provide an external assessment of ideas and actions at critical business junctures.
What’s your favorite “life lesson” quote and how has it affected your life?
Michael Roub: In the past year I have become a Peloton addict. Some of the Peloton instructors have catch phrases that serve to motivate or inspire participants. I often take classes where Kendall Toole is the instructor, and at the end of each class she leaves with, “You are worthy. You are ready. And they can knock you down, but they will never knock you out.” It’s a great reminder that you need to believe in yourself.
Others may doubt you, and you will fail at times. However, how you respond is critical. This is a perfect example of resilience and moving forward no matter what challenges you face. I have had deals fall apart, business ventures that did not succeed, and people that have doubted me at times. These experiences give me opportunity to reflect on how I can be better, stronger and smarter going forward. It’s both a challenge and an opportunity to redefine your success.
Jed Morley, VIP Contributor to ValiantCEO and the host of this interview would like to thank Michael Roub for taking the time to do this interview and share his knowledge and experience with our readers.
If you would like to get in touch with Michael Roub or his company, you can do it through his – Linkedin Page
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