If you go where the money is, if you’re good at what you do, if you continually learn and are prepared to work hard, then you’ll see the rewards.
Seven years ago we started Brandon & Gullo out of our ironing room! Over the years we’ve certainly made some mistakes and learnt some big lessons but we’ve also celebrated some great wins along the way. Two years ago we were recognised on the BRW Fast 100 list. While this was a wonderful moment to celebrate with our team, there are definitely some keys that have helped myself and the firm achieve this. Here are just six things (out of the thousand) I’ve learnt or seen that might help you in your new or existing business venture.
Go where the money is
You will never have a thriving business if you are in an industry where there is no money. You might have a good product or service, but if demand is low then it won’t be profitable. I know many entrepreneurs who struggle with this reality. Your idea might be revolutionary but if no one is willing to pay for that idea or macro-environmental factors mean it is inaccessible or not feasible your business won’t succeed. Make sure your business is viable in the context it needs to survive.
Are you good at business or just good at something?
This is a tough question. The reality is you may be really good at a trade or skill, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re going to be successful at managing and running a business applying this trade or skill. Often times people go out on their own when they are probably worth more (in terms of wages) and can leverage greater promotion opportunities as an employee. If you’re not passionate about business and prepared to do the lonely long yards required of a business startup, let someone else take the risk and cost of running a business and you just focus on being a brilliant employee applying your skill or trade! Doing business is a skill in itself and the reality is not everyone is cut out to run a business.
That’s the one thing I did and still do! It’s very easy to get discouraged especially when you take a hit, therefore it’s so important to surround yourself with people who believe in you and get what you’re trying to achieve. Take calculated risks and back yourself because as they say “fortune favours the brave” and “haters gonna hate”.
The idea of having margins in your life is not a new one, whether it be time, energy, health or finances. But when you’re starting a business, having financial reserves allow you to endure through tough times, which are inevitable. As a secondary point to this, avoid debt and get sound financial advice. Building reserves is a lot easier when you don’t have debt or the consequences of poor financial decisions hanging over your head.
Have a good name
Be honest, be truthful and have integrity. I believe in the basic principal of what you sow you reap. Having an honest and integrous business will go a long way in building trust and your reputation in the community and marketplace. Keep your word and build a relationship-based business.
Be prepared to make no money for the first couple of years. Longevity has effect and the longer you’re in business the more profitable you should be. Hard work and discipline will pay off but having a long-term frame of mind will keep you running and jumping over the hurdles you may face.
This is definitely not an exhaustive list, but these are some of the keys that will assist you in your business. If you go where the money is, if you’re good at what you do, you continually learn and are prepared to work hard, then you’ll see the rewards.