When it comes to cutting costs, you have to forget about any imaginary thresholds and look at everything. I made a list of every contract that the bank had and looked for ways to lower costs for everything. And while it may be the million-dollar negotiations that everybody notices, a couple thousand dollars here or there are just as important. For example, I saved $5,000 by negotiating a contract with the guy who watered our plants. Most people don’t even notice that the guy exists. And when you tell him that he needs to lower his costs or lose his job, he’s puzzled because nobody has ever questioned him before. But $5,000 is three or four laptops for salespeople. I was also able to save $50,000 by changing our contract with the cleaning agency.
You need to think of everything.
—As told to Ben Worthen