Small Team Ventures

Little Engine Ventures is a nod to small but mighty teams that humble themselves before troubled customers, and help them climb. We are excellent at managing small teams at multiple locations. Our team sizes range from 2 to 25 per location. When others think “that’s barely a company!” We think “small but mighty.” A large […]

2023 Annual Meeting

The partners of Little Engine Ventures are invited to gather. We will confront our progress and blunders over the last 12 months and try to explain how our thinking has evolved since launch and where that may take us on our journey ahead. No questions are off limits. Come early. Stay late. Enjoy our city […]

Coping Mechanisms for High Pressure Management

Pressure can result in higher or lower output. A healthy dose of pressure can result in flow state, increased focused, and clarity of decision making and action. Too much pressure and you are crushed by the weight and stress of the situation. What’s the difference? The output is determined by how the pressure is transformed […]

Succumbing to Customized Software in a SMB

There is a debate among small business owners regarding building your own custom software to run sales or operations versus buying or subscribing to existing tools. Well respected friends of mine argue that it’s wiser to simply buy the SaaS tool that is built for your industry or problem. They’re successful and the proof is […]

How to Sell Your Engineer-to-Order Service Business to an Employee

The professional service firm is the classic engineer-to-order service business. Consultants, legal, accounting and technical consultants are people-heavy. Mikel calls these companies, “smart people who can type.” Selling these companies is often quite difficult and rarely produces a large, single payday. The reason? Lack of repeatable processes. However, rather than belabor the problems with the […]

2020’s Greatest Hits

We have a few new website visitors to our corner of the web thanks to this post about The State of Micro Private Equity. These 5 posts are the most visited from 2020. They serve as a good overview of where we’ve recently been. If you’re new around here, start with one and choose your […]

Nice shirt. Are you invested?

I wear our company gear a lot. I estimate that about 90% of my daily wear clothing has a logo of a company I have ownership in or a non-profit where I serve on the board of directors. It’s the nearest thing I have to a uniform. But I don’t just wear the gear to […]

Savage to Sage

Daniel Fuller, a friend of mine, started a new podcast and invited me to be the first guest. We get into a lot of my personal journey that lead me to business ownership and Little Engine Ventures.

Do Better Work

A few week’s ago I received a copy of Max Yoder’s book, “Do Better Work.” I’ve met Max a few times over the years. We even shared a stage once at The Combine conference in Bloomington. So that I’m familiar with Max but don’t know him super well is the point. But in those brief […]

2019 Book Club

It’s not a secret that we (Daryl, Mikel, and Colin) learn by reading. In every newsletter we highlight the current book each of us is reading. We’ve joked that LEV is actually a book club that just happens to buy businesses. We’ve handed out many books over the last couple years. So we decided to […]