What You Need To Know When You Are Starting Your First Business!
Q: As a first time entrepreneur, what part of the process are people often completely blind to? What part of the process were you completely blind to before you started and which hit you like a wall coming out of nowhere? Maxwell J. New York, NY USA
I have to laugh a little at this question because it takes me back to my first disaster at age 20 when I opened my first company. I was is a service industry and took on a client and a project that I had no business taking on. I was way over confident and I have to admit a little greedy (It was a multi-million dollar contract). What I didn’t do was double check on my client before I committed myself to the job to make sure they had the resources and stability to back up their claims and run the numbers carefully to insure that I would generate a profit, stay within their budget, and be able to meet their deadline without incurring extra labor expenses. In just a few months after starting the project the company suddenly went bankrupt and I was out thousands of dollars. It was a real struggle to regain my confidence and financial stability.
Years latter and lesson learned, I was once again approached with a huge and potentially very profitable project. This time however, I took a different approach. Even before our first meeting and with the clients full knowledge, I completed a full vetting process of them and the potential project. We then sat down to have our first meeting and go over their project and proposed budget. I had doubts about how realistic the budget they proposed was and asked for 48 hours to verify what I thought would be closer to the actual costs of the potential project. You noticed that I said “Potential” because I still had not committed myself to the project yet. Taking a more methodical approach safe guarded by bottom line but also presented a more professional demeanor to my client and let them know that I was looking out for their interest as well as my own by giving them the most accurate information that was available. The final result was that by extending the same level of professionalism and excellence throughout the project not only did I make a profit, I also had very happy customers. So happy in fact, that they referred my company to others resulting in two additional projects.
The bottom line; don’t take on projects bigger than your company, verify everything before you commit, and perform every task no matter how small with the highest level of excellence and professionalism. I hope this has given you a little guidance. If you are just starting out and feeling a little unsure as you build your business I understand. I know exactly how that feels and I would like to offer you gift to help you feel a bit more secure. To help you get started I have created a free Business Plan Toolkit you can download right now to help you stay on track and successfully build your business. Get it here!
If you need more in depth help please feel free to Contact Us. I would also strongly suggest that you download a copy of Business Genesis. You will find that a lot more detailed information than what I can provide to you here. We can also chat on our Twitter page where we let you in on our latest tips and resources for you and your business. Good luck!