Shauna A. Wekherlien, CPA is the owner of Tax Goddess Business Services, a full-service tax and accounting firm with a focus on tax strategy and planning to help lower and minimize taxes for business owners and investors. She is a certified public accountant and one of the elite Certified Tax Coaches in the USA. Shauna is also an author, speaker, investor, and a highly sought-after tax strategist whose reputation has been built on 20+ years of experience and implementing innovative tax solutions for individuals and businesses.
Where did you grow up and what was your childhood like? Did you have any particular experiences/stories that shaped your adult life?
I grew up in Edmonton, Alberta (Canada – yes I’m one of those super nice Canadians). I then moved to the US when I was 12. My family is in construction and we follow the snowbirds down to Scottsdale, Arizona.
My childhood was amazing, as I was surrounded by exceptional examples of leaders and strong, courageous women. My mother has shaped my adult life. I come from generations of business owners; 800 years of entrepreneurs to be precise!
Mom embodies the drive, determination, and overall badass mentality that has made me the successful entrepreneur that I am today. She built herself up from sewing tags in clothes for Macy’s to becoming a rock star entrepreneur that will leave an empire and legacy to my sister and me, along with generations to come!
My mother put herself through college and became one of the only female VPs of one of the largest banks in Canada. She taught me grit, drive, and a phenomenal work ethic. It is because of her that I am who I am today. I gladly shout from the highest rooftop, “I get it from my momma!”; and, I hope to be half the woman she is when I grow up!
What is something you wish you would’ve realized earlier in your life?
When I first started my business over 16 years ago, I struggled with day-to-day operations of the “little things”. I wish I would have realized sooner that I had a support team, people to reach out to, mentors, advisors, and the like that would have gladly helped me when I was first starting out. At times, I didn’t realize that I did not have to know how to do everything on my own and that I am only as successful as those around me and I am only as successful as the teams that I have supporting me.
What are bad recommendations you hear in your profession or area of expertise?
Plan, you don’t need to plan, we can make any changes we need to make on the tax return after the end of the tax year. (WORST ADVICE EVER!!!!)
Tell me about one of the darker periods you’ve experienced in life. How you came out of it and what you learned from it?
The death of my father had a significant impact on my young mind. It made me realize that growing strong and depending on yourself is primary. That anything in your life can change at any moment – so being prepared and ready to handle anything is key 🙂
What is one thing that you do that you feel has been the biggest contributor to your success so far?
Eliminate. Automate. Delegate.
That is my motto and it has contributed to my success thus far. Often, we feel overwhelmed and like there just isn’t enough time. One has to ask, “Am I doing the $10 an hour jobs or am I focusing on the $1000 an hour jobs?”; “Am I enjoying the task?”; “Is the task income-generating and is the task an obligation?” Once these answers have been determined, it is much easier to learn how to either eliminate, automate, or delegate so that I can focus on the things that matter most and will drive the outcomes for a sustained legacy in all areas of my life.
What is your morning routine?
I generally wake up around 5 am every morning. I thrive on structure, routine, and consistency. Everything is scheduled and planned out on my calendar. I wake up and fuel my body with breakfast! Then, I take my babies on their morning walk; by babies, I mean fur babies. Shade is 7 years old and the most precious rescue that I have! Aos is 3 years old and she is the protector of the house. She is also a rescued German Shepherd who stands her ground and defends her domain! After a few house chores are done, I write down my Top 3 Tasks for the day. Nothing else gets done for the rest of the day until these tasks are completed.
Remember to follow the eliminate, automate, and delegate rules to determine the most important tasks for that day!
What habit or behavior that you have pursued for a few years has most improved your life?
Eliminate – Automate – Delegate and Top 3 Tasks for the day!
What are your strategies for being productive and using your time most efficiently?
You may be recognizing a theme or pattern! That is how vitality important these ideas have become in my life! Eliminate – Automate – Delegate and Top 3 Tasks for the day! In addition, the use of a calendar. I must schedule everything out and plan to the minute what I will be doing each and every day. This is how I ensure that I am the most productive and using my time most
What book(s) have influenced your life the most? Why?
The 4-Hour Workweek – Tim Ferriss – Honestly, and this is going to be the most silly, in one of the footnotes of this book he talked about automating your calendar and scheduling system so that when you’re dealing with trying to book an appointment with somebody you don’t have to go back-and-forth. This changed my vision of the world to how many of the little simple things in life you can automate, delegate, and simplify to make your life better and easier. One single footnote changed my entire vision of the world!
Do you have any quotes you live by or think of often?
“Do or do not. There is no try.” – Yoda
“Hope it NOT a strategy” – Fred Kroin
“When everything goes to hell, go have a good cry and get on with it.” – My Mother