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9/19/2017 7:27:10 PM
Posted: 1/25/2006 8:11:13 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/30/2006 3:41:54 PM EDT by stretch415]
I took some classes and will graduate with a bus admin and marketing degree this summer. Im afraid of the job market and job security. Seems like starting a business is the way to go. So anybody here who has done just that please post up how you started, what you do, and what made you decide to do it.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 8:20:30 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/25/2006 8:21:25 PM EDT by Garand_Shooter]
Yup, grew up in the family business, military surplus, and have been refining it and branching out for a while when not interrupted by deployments.

My dad got started while working in commercial collections. He got a load of t-shirts the company took as payment then sold off to him and took them to the flea market. It turned into a weekend hobby and he sought out other sources for shirts. Then he got some camoflauge shirts and they sold better than solid colors..... and things grew from there. When the compnay told him hey were closing the local office and he could move to TX or be unemployed he deceided to go full time into it.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 8:27:46 PM EDT
Do you know how he ended up finding the supplier. That seems to by my problem as far as internet sales. I can never figure out were I need to go to get product to sell.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 8:33:53 PM EDT
I'll give it a shot.

I had lifelong ambitions of being a business owner.

I started out as a Asst Manager of a grocery store, while in college. I learned lots for my future life in that job.

Using connection from the grocery business, I moved into the softdrink business.

This is where I got my real training. I talked to successful managers and business owners daily and gleened knowledge that was not available in a classroom or book.

Then a move from sales to management brought a double edged sword of a brilliant manager who was a cold calculating criminal for a boss.

"John" was my new boss. He was GM, I was the sales manager, of the largest per capita Coca Cola bottling operation in Texas.

Man we freaking kicked ass. Dollar sales increases of 20% Product increase sales of 40%. Bottom line profit increase of 60%.

I learned about everything from cost to clean the floor to maximizing the expense of the Board of Directors and getting a return on even those expenses.

My boss "John" we will call him, was the VP of the largest Coca Cola bottling company in the world. He knew his shit. This website doesn't have the bandwidth to list what all he taught me.

His problem was he ALWAYS wanted to strech to rules. Cut a customer short to help our number look even better. I hated this and sabatoged his plans for this regulaly.

I took the lesson he taught me and along with a high dose of integrity and stated a small chemical manufacturing business. We have since expanded into the cleaning equipment business.

I underestimated the loyalty the this customer base had to existing suppliers. It was unheard of in the soft drink business for loyalty to mean anything after you gave the customer the deal.

But after struggling for 5 years the last 9 have been overall AWESOME.

I did it to fulfil my lifelong dream of being self employed.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 8:35:46 PM EDT
Its easy!

Step 1. Find a market you can exploit.
Step 2. Exploit.

Link Posted: 1/25/2006 8:44:22 PM EDT

Originally Posted By krpind:
I'll give it a shot.

I had lifelong ambitions of being a business owner.

I started out as a Asst Manager of a grocery store, while in college. I learned lots for my future life in that job.

Using connection from the grocery business, I moved into the softdrink business.

This is where I got my real training. I talked to successful managers and business owners daily and gleened knowledge that was not available in a classroom or book.

Then a move from sales to management brought a double edged sword of a brilliant manager who was a cold calculating criminal for a boss.

"John" was my new boss. He was GM, I was the sales manager, of the largest per capita Coca Cola bottling operation in Texas.

Man we freaking kicked ass. Dollar sales increases of 20% Product increase sales of 40%. Bottom line profit increase of 60%.

I learned about everything from cost to clean the floor to maximizing the expense of the Board of Directors and getting a return on even those expenses.

My boss "John" we will call him, was the VP of the largest Coca Cola bottling company in the world. He knew his shit. This website doesn't have the bandwidth to list what all he taught me.

His problem was he ALWAYS wanted to strech to rules. Cut a customer short to help our number look even better. I hated this and sabatoged his plans for this regulaly.

I took the lesson he taught me and along with a high dose of integrity and stated a small chemical manufacturing business. We have since expanded into the cleaning equipment business.

I underestimated the loyalty the this customer base had to existing suppliers. It was unheard of in the soft drink business for loyalty to mean anything after you gave the customer the deal.

But after struggling for 5 years the last 9 have been overall AWESOME.

I did it to fulfil my lifelong dream of being self employed.



So what was it that made you think of a small chemical manufacturing business? Im just looking for the sign that says "DO THIS IDIOT". I realize that will probably never come so I need to open my eyes more. I would love to start a Jimmy Johns Franchise but they cost roughly $300,000 to get off and running and you get the restrictions of a franchise.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 8:46:10 PM EDT
No, but I want to own my own business someday. I'm begining to hate corporate america and I want out. I'd like to have me a little "mom and pop" shop doing something small time.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 8:48:17 PM EDT

Originally Posted By stretch415:
I took some classes and will graduate with a bus admin and marketing degree this summer. Im afraid of the job market and job security.



If you want security, starting your own business is NOT the way to go. For that, you have to go to government work.

Link Posted: 1/25/2006 8:49:28 PM EDT

Originally Posted By motown_steve:
No, but I want to own my own business someday. I'm begining to hate corporate america and I want out. I'd like to have me a little "mom and pop" shop doing something small time.



Exactly Corporate American is going down the shit and so much is structured of what "the man" says and not on your performance.

I just read Wes Moss's book "starting from scratch" and it basically describes 26 people and their success stories as well as what they did to get going. A good read anyways but they were people fed up with their structured pay and crappy job security. Its time to go outside of the fricken box man.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 8:57:15 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/25/2006 8:58:23 PM EDT by krpind]

Originally Posted By stretch415:


So what was it that made you think of a small chemical manufacturing business? Im just looking for the sign that says "DO THIS IDIOT". I realize that will probably never come so I need to open my eyes more. I would love to start a Jimmy Johns Franchise but they cost roughly $300,000 to get off and running and you get the restrictions of a franchise.



Opportunity and timing.

There were several companies doing what I was going to attempt, but none of them were reliable in the sense we are now.

If you called them they might not have any inventory in stock, or just put you off for several days to a week.

I thought if I used the knowledge from Coke about keeping those stores stocked and applied it to this business, I would have a winning combination.

The profit margins were also very attractive. I would soon find out that it took ALL of those profits to survive.

I was right.....only 2 of the companies I went up against in the early days are still around and they are all hurting.



I know it was a long answer to a short question.........but it really came down to an opportunity that came knocking.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:09:31 PM EDT

Originally Posted By krpind:

Originally Posted By stretch415:


So what was it that made you think of a small chemical manufacturing business? Im just looking for the sign that says "DO THIS IDIOT". I realize that will probably never come so I need to open my eyes more. I would love to start a Jimmy Johns Franchise but they cost roughly $300,000 to get off and running and you get the restrictions of a franchise.



Opportunity and timing.

There were several companies doing what I was going to attempt, but none of them were reliable in the sense we are now.

If you called them they might not have any inventory in stock, or just put you off for several days to a week.

I thought if I used the knowledge from Coke about keeping those stores stocked and applied it to this business, I would have a winning combination.

The profit margins were also very attractive. I would soon find out that it took ALL of those profits to survive.

I was right.....only 2 of the companies I went up against in the early days are still around and they are all hurting.



I know it was a long answer to a short question.........but it really came down to an opportunity that came knocking.


No its good to hear inside stuff like this. Gets me motivated to do something when I hear a success story. So you refer to this opportunity how did you hear or know about it. It just seems like a side industry that most wouldnt think about. I think thats alot of my problem is that I cant look at things like that. I think guns, food, electronics, all the big stuff thats already done to death and the first thing that others think of. So I guess the question is how did you know that chemicals were the thing to do?
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:11:41 PM EDT
Yes.

Tag.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:27:25 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/25/2006 9:31:30 PM EDT by neshomamench]
While some may disagree and you may not like it, I would say you have the wrong credentials to be a business owner. Not the worst mind you and certainly people with your credentials have made it work.

I find people formally educated in business often run businesses well but dont have that spark to start them or the spark to do it right. I also find people with formal business educations work inside the proverbial "box" that they have been trained for, that is not the best approach. The same can be said about those that are formally trained in marketing. Marketers do NOT revolutionize marketing. Someone with vision (that knows people and nothing about marketing) does and marketers THEN box it up and sell it.

Look at fortune 5000(not a typo) companies. now look at the people who founded them. On the founders level you will find very few have formal business educations. You will find that the leadership that comes after the founders often do. That IMO is a valuable lesson. Look at your local shoe store, Fast food resturants, nail salons, Cab companies, Garages, Gun ranges, bed and matress stores, whatever, These people often dont have a business education.

Drive through the wealthies communities in any given town. Discount the few doctors and Lawyers who live there and those who were given wealth, You will find handfull of MBA types, but most of them will work for someone else. Most of those people own something and they have great stories but they ussually dont include a business background.

You want to make it as a business owner(from scratch), You need Luck, hunger, and either outright theivery (copy a good idea) or be "that guy" (the crazy origional guy who makes things happen) and not every one is cut out to be "that guy" Most people are down right dishonest with themselves, and that is one of the contributing factors to there failure. Most people think they are "that guy" but the truth is, your not. It is like parents talking about there own children. You would think that most kids would grow up to cure cancer and walk on Mars....well we know how that plays out. Being that guy isnt so much about how smart you are or how gifted you are (while they do help) being that guy is about knowing people. Nothing happens untill at least two people dance and someone sells something. You dont have to know chinese algebra or how to run a comparison marketing campaign to get people to pay attention to you and buy whatever you are selling.

BTW, I retired at 23 by my own hand. (Like fly in a lear jet from time to time and drive exotic cars retired and it has nothing to do with computers) I know Billionairs and paupers. I dine with both regularly, I cant spell worth a damned and have made serious mistakes in my life but have got it right just slightly more. I have a formal education, but not in business.

The way I see it is like this, Making it in business is like not knowing anything about guns, and deciding one day you are going to kill an elephant. All you have is a .22 so you pick up a .22 and manage to go kill an Elephant. All you know is you Killed an Elephant with a gun...and that was your goal. Now imagine if someone who "knows better" had gotten ahold of you before you set out on this folly? You wouldnt have achived your goal....but hey, at least now you would "know better"

Your milage may vary....and the great irony is my whole post was me telling you, You should "know better"
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:36:33 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/25/2006 9:37:57 PM EDT by gaspain]

Originally Posted By neshomamench:
While some may disagree and you may not like it, I would say you have the wrong credentials to be a business owner. Not the worst mind you and certainly people with your credentials have made it work.

I find people formally educated in business often run businesses well but dont have that spark to start them or the spark to do it rig.....blah blah blah, stroke own ego, blah blah ego.....etc



You sir, are an asshole!


stretch415, you can do anything you set your mind to, dont let anyone tell you otherwise. They may say it isnt "wise" or other things that may get you down, but you know what...FUCK THEM!
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:38:53 PM EDT

Originally Posted By gaspain:

Originally Posted By neshomamench:
While some may disagree and you may not like it, I would say you have the wrong credentials to be a business owner. Not the worst mind you and certainly people with your credentials have made it work.

I find people formally educated in business often run businesses well but dont have that spark to start them or the spark to do it rig.....blah blah blah, stroke own ego, blah blah ego.....etc



You sir, are an asshole!





how big do you think his bathroom is?
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:42:00 PM EDT
I axcidently started a bussiness after losing my job for being at the hospital with my daughter to long. Was a good thing though!!! I started ETEX Custom Cage Works. I build an exotic inclosure, sell the exotics and then sell them a care taking service for the cages and animal. Do mostly Nursing Homes.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 9:47:45 PM EDT

Originally Posted By gaspain:

Originally Posted By neshomamench:
While some may disagree and you may not like it, I would say you have the wrong credentials to be a business owner. Not the worst mind you and certainly people with your credentials have made it work.

I find people formally educated in business often run businesses well but dont have that spark to start them or the spark to do it rig.....blah blah blah, stroke own ego, blah blah ego.....etc



You sir, are an asshole!




stretch415, you can do anything you set your mind to, dont let anyone tell you otherwise. They may say it isnt "wise" or other things that may get you down, but you know what...FUCK THEM!



In your rush to put up your 2 cents, I guess my last line was lost on you. Somewhere, right now someone is running his mouth off about Tiger woods' golf game. regardless of what he is saying, we can all be sure of one thing, whoever it is, he aint tiger woods.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 10:11:00 PM EDT
I am six weeks into a new retail venture and I still have my real job so I can afford to lose everything I ever had in life.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 10:18:16 PM EDT

Originally Posted By PeteCO:
Yes.




+1
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 11:41:10 PM EDT
My .02 for just starting out.

First, research your market. The number one mistake I see people make is assuming everyone is like they are, and they market to "themselves" or such a tiny portion of the possible market that they fail. A good example of this is the fad stores that come and go. A few years ago it was "scrapbooking" stores... seems every town had a few because Mary Joe housewife got interested in it, a few of her friends did, and she assumed the rest of the world would also. So she opens a scrapbooking store, soon realizing the market is very tiny, and even among those who are interested there is only so much you can sell to them. 90% closed in under a year.

Second, find a mentor in the field. You can do this directly, by finding a successfull person in your field to help you, or I suggest indirectly by actually getting a job in the field with someone who has been successfull with the same or a similar business. You can learn more by sitting back and watching them for a year or so, even if it means working for a low wage, than you ever learned in business school. At the same time you can be doing additional research, networking, and getting yourself ready to enter the market. You will come out much better than anyone entering the smae market blind. For example I know a couple who alyways knew they wanted to own a BBQ restaurant. So for 3 years they both worked as cooks in some of the best BBQ joints in NC even though they were both college graduates who could have been making much more money. Then, when the time came to open thier restaurant they knew a whole lot more about how to manage it, buy supplies, market themselves, and how to prepare the product. Since they located far enough away from thier former employers a few even helped them out loaning or selling them equipment they no longer used. They have been very sucessfull, and now have 3 locations when most new restaraunts fail in the first 2-3 years.

Never forget you aim is to make money LONG TERM.

What kind of business are you considering?
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 12:12:20 AM EDT

Originally Posted By stretch415:
Do you know how he ended up finding the supplier. That seems to by my problem as far as internet sales. I can never figure out were I need to go to get product to sell.



Legwork mostly. In my business there are trade papers that will hook you up with a whole lot of suppliers, but for the remaining it involves getting out and finding them, and some of the best ones were made by simply walking in and asking what they had for sale. To use the t-shirts as an example, when he realized they sold well, after that first batch he accidentally got, he went to local textile plants and asked them if they sold thier overruns, irregulars, and seconds. The IR's and seconds all had small flaws, but they sold very well for people looking for work shirts anyway, and to this day we still sell irregular camo t-shirts from one of Wal-marts suppliers because 90% of hunters could care less is there is a small run in the camo ink. As manufacturing has moved overseas much of that market has gone away, but much still remains here. In fact since military contracts are still made here, that market still exists, but most established manufacturers alreday have someone taking thier seconds and overruns, but if you find someone with a new contract you can still get in with them early.

In one of my other markets, military collectables and reenacting supplies, the market for vintage WWII items is tough, but by establishing myself as a buyer that will take entire lots, is dependable, and willing to make fast deals I often can get entire lots of a rare find before they get offered to anyone else that the importer or wholesaler deals with. Why? Because if they can buy it, call me and move 100% of what they bought they come out better than if they end up selling it for slightly more but having to advertise, sell to and invoice many dealers for small orders, and wharehouse, pack and ship them. I have also established myself in this way with distributers that only sometimes get such items and don't normally deal in them. They don't have the normal marketing channels to move an item slightly off thier target market, but know they can deal with me. Your realationship with your suppliers is important.

Link Posted: 1/26/2006 6:05:52 AM EDT

Originally Posted By neshomamench:
"



While technically you are correct on all accounts.

There are intangables that cannot be accounted for. Sometimes it is luck (being in the right place at the right time), sometimes it is fortitude.

The problem is your glass is half empty. Mine is always overfull

Perhaps your early success has somehow jaded you.

You know nothing of this young man and could not possibly know how successful he is capable of becoming. If he can sell and has a huge ego, I'll will take him, as a business partner, over your rich ass anyday.

Having a Harward education would assure you of a pretty good lifestyle, but if you want to be super rich......you have to be a salesman and have a huge ego. No other path, other than your parents, will make you a billionaire.

Sales will always be the key to a successful business.

Volume will hide all mistakes.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 6:37:18 AM EDT

Originally Posted By stretch415:

So I guess the question is how did you know that chemicals were the thing to do?



A girl I knew was working at one of the places that was manufacturing cleaning chemicals.

She complained that people would call and bitch her out because her boss would not take care of them. Classic case of a good idea being mishandled by bad management.

I spent a lot of time investigating the people in the business and finding out what they were doing that made their customers upset.

The chemical business is/was full of crooks at the time. They would sell high quality cleaners when they first got the account and soon begin watering it down. (true story: A drilling rig toolpusher told me he watched one of my former competitors pump water out of a creek, into a partial tank of "soap" and then deliver it to another rig down the road.)

I have never done that and never will. You get what you pay for when I say you will get it.

Link Posted: 1/26/2006 6:45:40 AM EDT

Originally Posted By stretch415:
Do you know how he ended up finding the supplier. That seems to by my problem as far as internet sales. I can never figure out were I need to go to get product to sell.



Wow, if I knew then what i know now.

One of the toughest things about starting a new business is, finding good suppliers that won't end run you direct to your customers.

The other thing is esablished and good paying customers get better pricing than new businesses.
I tend to have long term relationships with my suppliers and get rewarded with great pricing from them.

I KNOW I buy at a cheaper price than my competitors. Just like some of them were buying cheaper than I was when my business was new.

It sucks it is just the way it is. And quite frankly it is a major obstacle to over come with a new business. You are already at a disadvantage and now to compete on price you have to survive on a thinner margin than your competitor. Sounds easy huh???
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 6:50:43 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/26/2006 6:51:37 AM EDT by memyselfandi]
When I was in college in small town east texas, I went to the country courthouse and got my own DBA. It was uber easy and only $15 for 10yrs of a registered name. Only reason I even did that was so that I could make business cards with a name that no one could sue me over. Had about a years worth of desktop support for customers by word of mouth only and it brought in around $300-400 extra a month on top of a part time job. Go for it!! LLC is an easy one too Ive heard. Just start it and run with it. THough sometimes it takes having a job first to come up with the $$ to start what your really wanting to do.

What ever you do though make sure you have a decent pc with hdd space, a good laser printer, and the proper software to take care of and keep track of whatever your doing. Oh and liability insurance for a 1 employee company. Oh and dont have crappy lookin biz cards. Spend the extra and get NICE looking ones. A fly by night looking thing nobody will have anything to do with.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 7:17:12 AM EDT

Originally Posted By neshomamench:
While some may disagree and you may not like it, I would say you have the wrong credentials to be a business owner. Not the worst mind you and certainly people with your credentials have made it work.

I find people formally educated in business often run businesses well but dont have that spark to start them or the spark to do it right. I also find people with formal business educations work inside the proverbial "box" that they have been trained for, that is not the best approach. The same can be said about those that are formally trained in marketing. Marketers do NOT revolutionize marketing. Someone with vision (that knows people and nothing about marketing) does and marketers THEN box it up and sell it.

Look at fortune 5000(not a typo) companies. now look at the people who founded them. On the founders level you will find very few have formal business educations. You will find that the leadership that comes after the founders often do. That IMO is a valuable lesson. Look at your local shoe store, Fast food resturants, nail salons, Cab companies, Garages, Gun ranges, bed and matress stores, whatever, These people often dont have a business education.

Drive through the wealthies communities in any given town. Discount the few doctors and Lawyers who live there and those who were given wealth, You will find handfull of MBA types, but most of them will work for someone else. Most of those people own something and they have great stories but they ussually dont include a business background.

You want to make it as a business owner(from scratch), You need Luck, hunger, and either outright theivery (copy a good idea) or be "that guy" (the crazy origional guy who makes things happen) and not every one is cut out to be "that guy" Most people are down right dishonest with themselves, and that is one of the contributing factors to there failure. Most people think they are "that guy" but the truth is, your not. It is like parents talking about there own children. You would think that most kids would grow up to cure cancer and walk on Mars....well we know how that plays out. Being that guy isnt so much about how smart you are or how gifted you are (while they do help) being that guy is about knowing people. Nothing happens untill at least two people dance and someone sells something. You dont have to know chinese algebra or how to run a comparison marketing campaign to get people to pay attention to you and buy whatever you are selling.

BTW, I retired at 23 by my own hand. (Like fly in a lear jet from time to time and drive exotic cars retired and it has nothing to do with computers) I know Billionairs and paupers. I dine with both regularly, I cant spell worth a damned and have made serious mistakes in my life but have got it right just slightly more. I have a formal education, but not in business.

The way I see it is like this, Making it in business is like not knowing anything about guns, and deciding one day you are going to kill an elephant. All you have is a .22 so you pick up a .22 and manage to go kill an Elephant. All you know is you Killed an Elephant with a gun...and that was your goal. Now imagine if someone who "knows better" had gotten ahold of you before you set out on this folly? You wouldnt have achived your goal....but hey, at least now you would "know better"

Your milage may vary....and the great irony is my whole post was me telling you, You should "know better"


Can I ask what you did to become so wealthy? I didnt catch it in your paragraphs of info.....
It seems like good information although I dont consider myself a Business man with a business degree and im going to apply everything Ive learned to a T. I will use it when needed but by no means do I rely on it.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 7:23:45 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Garand_Shooter:


What kind of business are you considering?


Thats what Im having trouble with. I havent had a light bulb yet. I did about 4 years of construction/handyman work in high school and my future father in law is the owner/foreman of his own construction biz. I thought about taking this and fixing(flipping) houses in the area. I am interested in real estate and like doing work. Ive also got a friend going to school in town next year who I worked with for the same const. company. I figured maybe the 2 of us could hit it together since he is also a hard worker. Anybody done or know of this?

I also am into cars, outdoor gear, ARs, and all the other normal stuff although I dont know how to get into something like that. I would love to be a dealer on the boards although it is way oversaturated and the current guys are all quality so it would be hard to overturn them
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 7:26:50 AM EDT
Yes, I have owned a small business (exotic pet shop), and currently do some side work cleaning swimming pools. The hardest thing is determining a demand that is not being filled in your area, and figuring out how to address that demand in a profitable manner.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 7:28:49 AM EDT

Originally Posted By rxdawg:
Yes, I have owned a small business (exotic pet shop), and currently do some side work cleaning swimming pools. The hardest thing is determining a demand that is not being filled in your area, and figuring out how to address that demand in a profitable manner.


exactly so what made you go into the pet business? Seems like there is a huge market for it although it has been filled in my area.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 7:29:12 AM EDT

Originally Posted By krpind:

Originally Posted By neshomamench:
"



While technically you are correct on all accounts.

There are intangables that cannot be accounted for. Sometimes it is luck (being in the right place at the right time), sometimes it is fortitude.

The problem is your glass is half empty. Mine is always overfull

Perhaps your early success has somehow jaded you.

You know nothing of this young man and could not possibly know how successful he is capable of becoming. If he can sell and has a huge ego, I'll will take him, as a business partner, over your rich ass anyday.

Having a Harward education would assure you of a pretty good lifestyle, but if you want to be super rich......you have to be a salesman and have a huge ego. No other path, other than your parents, will make you a billionaire.

Sales will always be the key to a successful business.

Volume will hide all mistakes.



I think my post was lost on you as well. Check out the "that guy" part and the nothing happens till someone sells something part.

Link Posted: 1/26/2006 7:31:07 AM EDT
Download the Episode of Southpark with the Underpants Gnomes.

All the answers lay there.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 7:38:50 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/26/2006 7:43:03 AM EDT by krpind]

Originally Posted By neshomamench:

Originally Posted By krpind:

Originally Posted By neshomamench:
"



While technically you are correct on all accounts.

There are intangables that cannot be accounted for. Sometimes it is luck (being in the right place at the right time), sometimes it is fortitude.

The problem is your glass is half empty. Mine is always overfull

Perhaps your early success has somehow jaded you.

You know nothing of this young man and could not possibly know how successful he is capable of becoming. If he can sell and has a huge ego, I'll will take him, as a business partner, over your rich ass anyday.

Having a Harward education would assure you of a pretty good lifestyle, but if you want to be super rich......you have to be a salesman and have a huge ego. No other path, other than your parents, will make you a billionaire.

Sales will always be the key to a successful business.

Volume will hide all mistakes.



I think my post was lost on you as well. Check out the "that guy" part and the nothing happens till someone sells something part.




No your post wasn't lost at all.

I agreed with the technical aspects of what you said. The irony also wasn't lost.


There is simply a vodoo aspect to starting a small business. Even ultra successful people have failures in their pasts.

But simply stating that this young man won't succeed, or will have a problem ALL business owners don't, without even knowing what he is going to attempt......is silly at the VERY best. Especally since you seem to be basing that assumption on the fact that he "got a formal education."

ETA...Spelling nazi's stay away from these posts....I know I mispelled Harvard and lots of others.What can I say........I don't have a formal edjumacation

Link Posted: 1/26/2006 7:48:14 AM EDT

Originally Posted By stretch415:

Originally Posted By rxdawg:
Yes, I have owned a small business (exotic pet shop), and currently do some side work cleaning swimming pools. The hardest thing is determining a demand that is not being filled in your area, and figuring out how to address that demand in a profitable manner.


exactly so what made you go into the pet business? Seems like there is a huge market for it although it has been filled in my area.



I was living in south GA, close to King's Bay naval base. There was only one shop in the area and he just did dogs/cats/freshwater fish. We opened a shop and mostly carried reptiles and saltwater, our customers were mostly Navy/Marine personnel and families. It did okay - we covered expenses and even made a little money. I sold my interest in it when I moved back to TN. I had about $15k of my own money involved.

Having experienced both retail and service businesses, I prefer doing swimming pools. Cash outlay to get started (not counting truck) is about $1000, and you WILL make money in my area if you do a good job.

Like I said, the hardest thing is recognizing the opportunity.

Link Posted: 1/26/2006 7:53:24 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/26/2006 7:54:30 AM EDT by neshomamench]

Originally Posted By krpind:

Originally Posted By neshomamench:

Originally Posted By krpind:

Originally Posted By neshomamench:
"



While technically you are correct on all accounts.

There are intangables that cannot be accounted for. Sometimes it is luck (being in the right place at the right time), sometimes it is fortitude.

The problem is your glass is half empty. Mine is always overfull

Perhaps your early success has somehow jaded you.

You know nothing of this young man and could not possibly know how successful he is capable of becoming. If he can sell and has a huge ego, I'll will take him, as a business partner, over your rich ass anyday.

Having a Harward education would assure you of a pretty good lifestyle, but if you want to be super rich......you have to be a salesman and have a huge ego. No other path, other than your parents, will make you a billionaire.

Sales will always be the key to a successful business.

Volume will hide all mistakes.



I think my post was lost on you as well. Check out the "that guy" part and the nothing happens till someone sells something part.




No your post wasn't lost at all.

I agreed with the technical aspects of what you said. The irony also wasn't lost.


There is simply a vodoo aspect to starting a small business. Even ultra successful people have failures in their pasts.

But simply stating that this young man won't succeed, or will have a problem ALL business owners don't, without even knowing what he is going to attempt......is silly at the VERY best. Especally since you seem to be basing that assumption on the fact that he "got a formal education."

ETA...Spelling nazi's stay away from these posts....I know I mispelled Harvard and lots of others.What can I say........I don't have a formal edjumacation




You dont look at it like I do. I do some Venture Capitol/angel investing. When people come to me and pitch an Idea, the guy with the best numbers a best footnotes on the financials doesnt get the money. (Although, you need to demonstrate an understanding of finance) It is the guy that builds the best vision for exactly who is going to buy this thing and why.

Nothing happens till someone sells something.
I didnt say "All"...I was very careful to say "Most" There are exceptions to every rule. however, Most people fail while trying to be an exception. (That is so simple a concept and very few understand that)
Some people have something that cant be learned. You dont get this in business school. Again, It is my opinion that trying to formilize this "something" is a sure way to not have this "something"

And again, Right now, somewhere, someone is proving everyone wrong including me by making it big time. ....but also, sooooo very many arent.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 8:08:37 AM EDT
I have been in business for myself in some fashion for the last 24 years (since I was 16).
My real first business grew out of my dad having the entrepreneur bug for 20-30 years before that. He was a big coin dealer (big for a small guy) in Europe and then got into selling military insignia and awards. He hooked me up with suppliers and stuff and I began the military sales stuff as well.
Always have done it since then as a fun and part-time job...not for a living...well maybe for income while I was in college.

Anyway, I have since owned two retail stores. I bought the second one based on fond memories of the first one...I guess I had forgotten all the bad problems associated with it. I would like to give it up now. I still work for the .gov for a living and make good money. More than I could ever make in my retail store. I have a friend with a similar store and we were talking the other day. Bottom line is that he does it for a living and gets his sales up and business thrives while he is there. I have to have a store manager and for what I can afford, he is not worth much so business suffers. Neither store really make enough to support a family on their own.

If I were you and you really want to get into business, you better work for someone in the business you like first. This gets you in the door, you can find out who the suppliers are, where to get stuff, etc. All businesses have a trade journal of a sorts and shows to attend for suppliers/vendors. I once thought about getting into the SIGN making business (can be very lucrative) and searched the internet and found the trade journal for it and then found suppliers and everything. Never went thru with it but I had everything lined up to do so.

For military stuff or guns or that like, you can go to some big conventions (military surplus has a big one in Vegas) and of course the shot show..etc. For clothing, there are big ones in Dallas and even a mall there that features vendors for wholesale. You have to decide what you like (do something you like) and then investigate it...takes a lot of research...and sometimes a lot of capital. Don't go in underfunded. Don't try and develop large debt either...makes it tough in lean times.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 8:08:46 AM EDT

Originally Posted By neshomamench:
You dont look at it like I do. I do some Venture Capitol/angel investing. When people come to me and pitch an Idea, the guy with the best numbers a best footnotes on the financials doesnt get the money. (Although, you need to demonstrate an understanding of finance) It is the guy that builds the best vision for exactly who is going to buy this thing and why.

Nothing happens till someone sells something.
I didnt say "All"...I was very careful to say "Most" There are exceptions to every rule. however, Most people fail while trying to be an exception. (That is so simple a concept and very few understand that)
Some people have something that cant be learned. You dont get this in business school. Again, It is my opinion that trying to formilize this "something" is a sure way to not have this "something"

And again, Right now, somewhere, someone is proving everyone wrong including me by making it big time. ....but also, sooooo very many arent.



No, I again agree that "some people just should not be in business for themselves". The business world is cruel and will often quickly weed these "posers" out. (sometimes the people continue on because they are too stupid to quit)

I have said this repeatedly and was one of the lessons learned that could not be taught from a classroom.

In my business credit is extended in a fairly liberal fashion. This is where lessons learned are applied. While a great manager NEVER prequalifies his customer, history and that gut feeling is important. Some people come into my office and I know immediately that they aren't going to get credit. Experience is the only teacher for some lessons.

But we are off on a tangent with this.

Perhaps your initial post was not read by me and others from the perspective that you intended......


Link Posted: 1/26/2006 8:18:45 AM EDT
I don't understand what is so hard about finding suppliers? Call the manufacturer and ask them who they are.

startup money and money to sustain you (and your personal overhead) as you grow and surely experience some setbacks, is the biggest problem.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 8:31:33 AM EDT
In the early 1980's I was invloved in a Computer Parts start up in Ca. One of my friends was a GM of a local company that was discontinuing a line that they believed was not in their core business yet had good margins . We formed a small group to build and sell this line. Our group consisted of a Mfg Mgr, Sales Mgr, Eng Mgr, Acct Mgr and a Hr. Mgr. We got the business up and running over a three year period and ended up selling it to a well known NYSE listed Co. (before the technology changed) and made a great deal of money. The biggest mistake we made (one of many) was not hiring a Purschasing Mgr soon enough because of this we paid too much for materials and missed discounts. We were able to sell our product to OEMs as a second or third source but we greatly underestimated the lead time for the buys so we had real cash flow issues. We were able to survive the cash crunch but there were some days that the EE's got paid and we didn't. Besides making money I learned more in that experience than I had learned in all my years of school and work. Go for it, you don't need that magic new product. People need good reliable business partners that they can trust. Remember you can get plenty rich by being a second or third source no one wants to be dependant on one supplier.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 8:38:01 AM EDT

Originally Posted By INI:
I don't understand what is so hard about finding suppliers? Call the manufacturer and ask them who they are.



If you call the manufacturers I do business with, they had better tell you to call me, or they won't be my supplier anymore.

One of the most highly guarded secrets in business is suppliers. The internet has made this a much easier task than when I started my company. A wise owner will keep the sources of material and equipment secret.


startup money and money to sustain you (and your personal overhead) as you grow and surely experience some setbacks, is the biggest problem.


Only one of the problems and often not the biggest. I have seen guys with unlimited money fail.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 8:42:40 AM EDT

Originally Posted By krpind:

Originally Posted By INI:


startup money and money to sustain you (and your personal overhead) as you grow and surely experience some setbacks, is the my biggest problem.






Link Posted: 1/26/2006 9:20:35 AM EDT
Boy, I could write forty pages of the glories, hazards and pitfalls of starting you own company. But I'll give you the real skinny.

Prepare to give your life to the entity you create. Forget about vacations, and heading home when ever you feel like. Add any employees and they will consume your life.

Of 10 new businesses created, eight fail in five years.

Pay your taxes. Nothing will bury you quicker than the State and the FEDS.

What ever market you choose, before for know it, there will another ten outfits pretending to do what you do. Doesn't make any difference if they do not know what they are doing.

The internet is just another selling tool. It will not save a company despite all the hype, nor is it the single solution to your business needs.

I started my company 25 years ago with $500. I was one of the rare few that made it work while weathering a storm of competition, defaulting clients and economies that go south.

Persistence is the key. Your education or talent won't carry you very far. The world is full of talent and educated idiots.

Use every spare dime on advertising and have pros do it (not your sister-in-law with a pirate copy of Illustrator).

Had I known what I know now, would I still do start a business from scratch? Yes, but the learning curve is very unforgiving.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 11:31:31 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Ramjet:
Boy, I could write forty pages of the glories, hazards and pitfalls of starting you own company. But I'll give you the real skinny.

Prepare to give your life to the entity you create. Forget about vacations, and heading home when ever you feel like. Add any employees and they will consume your life.

Of 10 new businesses created, eight fail in five years.

Pay your taxes. Nothing will bury you quicker than the State and the FEDS.

What ever market you choose, before for know it, there will another ten outfits pretending to do what you do. Doesn't make any difference if they do not know what they are doing.

The internet is just another selling tool. It will not save a company despite all the hype, nor is it the single solution to your business needs.

I started my company 25 years ago with $500. I was one of the rare few that made it work while weathering a storm of competition, defaulting clients and economies that go south.

Persistence is the key. Your education or talent won't carry you very far. The world is full of talent and educated idiots.

Use every spare dime on advertising and have pros do it (not your sister-in-law with a pirate copy of Illustrator).

Had I known what I know now, would I still do start a business from scratch? Yes, but the learning curve is very unforgiving.



Sorry if I missed it but what does your business consist of?

Just want to say there is some great stuff in these pages and I plan on printing them off and filing them with my other stuff. A big thanks goes out to you guys for sharing your knowledge with me and anyone else thinking of taking the leap that is reading. Now lets keep er rolling.........
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