Motivational speakers like Tai Lopez tell us success comes from doing a little more than everyone else, every day. Elon Musk said if everyone else works 40 hours a week and you work 100, you can accomplish in three months what it takes them all year to accomplish. Thomas Edison said, “I wonder what would have happened to me if some foolish, persuasive talker had converted me to the theory of the 8 hour day and convinced me it wasn’t fair to everyone else to put forth my best effort.” Edison invented the light bulb, founded GE and had 1,100 patents when he died. U of Kentucky B ball coach John Calipari said in his book, “You have to love the grind.” Ray Kroc wrote a book named, “Grinding It Out.”  Lets face it. Life is a grind; if you don’t love the grind, you won’t love life.

Warren Buffet’s right hand man, Charlie Munger, said, “To get what you want, you have to deserve what you want. The world is not yet a crazy enough place to reward a whole bunch of undeserving people.”  Nobody has yet been born with six pack abs or a college degree.

The good news is, all it takes is effort. “Knock & the door will be opened. Seek & you shall find.” But you have to knock, you have to seek, you have to put in the effort. But, if you love what you do, it’ll be more like play than work. The caveat is, we aren’t talking about busy work. We talking about meaningful, productive effort.


It’s also widely said by motivational speakers that you’ll become the average of the five people you rely on for advice. Napoleon Hill called this his “Mastermind group.” Franklin Roosevelt called it his “Brain Trust.”

Everyone has one. If you didn’t form it intentionally, it formed itself organically out of random people in your life. Whether they deserve it or not, they have the power to stifle or intensify your success. If your progress is a bit stagnate right now, maybe you should take a look at your Brain trust.

It goes without saying, one of the first people you should add to your Brain trust should be your tax & financial advisor. Despite all the flowery words you’ll find in company mission statements, financial profit is the default goal of every single business in the world.


Every penny you save on taxes that your competitors don’t save is a powerful competitive advantage. Apple’s famous “Double Irish & A Dutch Sandwich” tax strategy fueled their growth to most valuable company in the world. Without that tax strategy Apple would never have never have achieved that lofty status.

In Apple’s most recent year it took 627,000 people to earn a profit of $45 million. In 10 years at that rate Apple will earn $450 million over the next decade. But one single person who didn’t even work for Apple saved them $400 million over the last decade by creating the “Double Irish & A Dutch Sandwich” tax strategy.


Some people think I was born with a sliver spoon in my mouth. I have a top percentile IQ and a top percentile aptitude for my profession, both tested and documented. But my greatest strength, and your greatest opportunity to cash in, is my longevity. My Deep Domain Expertise in business & tax strategy did not come from those innate talents. They came from the road I traveled to get here.

After graduating #1 at university I started my career in the audit department at the biggest and best accounting firm in the world. Then I spent time with the largest consulting firm in the world, and subsequently spent a decade as a C Suite executive at two S&P 500 companies putting deals together. After a failed attempt to LBO my employer, I walked away from very big money (in those days I was bulletproof) and started the second half of my career as a tax strategist and advisor to privately owned businesses. A very large part of my Deep Domain Expertise came from my years as advisor and corporate officer putting deals together.

My personal practice is to cram something into every single waking moment of my life. I work a full day, every day; and I read three to six hours every day, sometimes more, generally more probably. (Warren Buffet reads 8). I read everything from tax law, constitutional law, government & legislative notices, business strategy, quantum physics, science fiction, self-help and biographies. If I can get it on kindle, I’ll read it. I was a distance athlete for much of my life, which required hours of training and taught me perseverance & stamina. All that effort paid off like compound interest. (Warren Buffet’s partner Charlie Munger called compound interest the 8th wonder of the world.)  It filled my brain & gives me an agile mind. Today I am probably the foremast tax strategist in the country for privately owned businesses and their owners.

Experience. Longevity. Street smarts. Time in code.

The basic framework of the tax code is pretty much determined by the 16th amendment. It hasn’t changed since the amendment was passed in 1913. Think of the tax code as a Christmas tree. Each year new ornaments are added, and a few are removed: balls, lights, tinsel, whatever.  But the tree itself never changes. Twice Congress did massive rewrites of the code. The first in 1954 and the last in 1986. But all they did was rearrange the decorations. The basic framework didn’t change. Today the tax code is 57,000 pages long, including code & precepts 100 years old. Add to that 100 years of litigated results, IRS announcements, etc., etc. and you have an idea of the complexity we are dealing with today. To further complicate matters, tax strategy is the art of tying different parts of the tax code together from viewpoints (angles) more common to people putting deals together than tax preparers. It’s a massive challenge, especially if you don’t have me experience in code & the tools I have to navigate in the code.

My age and unique background give me Deep Domain Expertise that’s probably unmatched. 99% of preparers don’t have any experience looking at the tax code from different viewpoints (angles). It’s not uncommon for me to have to explain the tax code to IRS agents. No preparer who doesn’t have 20 or 30 years in code simply can’t outperform me. It’s simply impossible.

The staff at Ellis is as close as I can get to that kind of street smarts. COO Hilary has double masters including MBA and years of experience developing her street smarts which today are highly developed. At Ellis you’ll find top performers with technical experience and diverse backgrounds cut from the same cloth at every key position.  Plus we’ve taken those skills and adapted them to emerging (but related) issues firms deal with as they grow.

So that’s our story.  Concrete, easily measured results propelled Ellis into a legitimate national firm with clients headquartered in 46 states and multiple foreign countries.  That absolutely proves the power of the internet to free businesses from neighborhood pretend experts and gives businesses & their owners ready access to the top advisors in the country.

Maybe you should write your own story.

Don’t forget, every single day the people you mentor and advise are being lifted to a higher level just because they know you.  That is not a bad legacy.

If you want to impress someone, refer them to us.


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