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Launching a successful business Launching a successful business
by Joseph Gatt
2020-06-30 08:30:47
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Let's keep it short for today. Straightforward tips if you want to launch a successful business.

I was reading books about the art of minimalism in Japan, and the basic idea is that you should get rid of anything you don't need and own minimal possessions to be happy.

I tend to disagree with that notion. I would tend to think that the more stuff you own, the better, as long as you “know your stuff.” That is, if you own possessions, be they clothes and fashion items, material possessions and so on, the general idea is the more stuff you know about your possessions, the better.

suc001_400So if you own a painting for example, it's always good to know the painter's biography, the different items and objects represented in the painting, what art trend or movement the painting belongs to and so on.

If you own a board game, you want to know the rules, bonus points if you know who invented the game and in what circumstances. If you own a fashion item, you want to know who designed it, what purpose it serves and who the different people (as in famous people) are wearing it and in what circumstances they are wearing the item.

I diverge.

So on launching a successful business.

A lot of people tell me that the key to a successful business is having startup funds. Wrong.

A lot of people tell me that the key to a successful business is knowing the right people or hiring the right people. (Partially) wrong.

A lot of people tell me that the key to a successful business is “knowing how to take risks.” Dead wrong.

A lot of people tell me that the key to a successful business is “knowing how to sell” or “being a good salesman.” Wrong.

So what's they key to launching a successful business?

The answer is... drum roll...

To know your stuff. Know your stuff. Know what you are doing.

So here are the steps you'll take when starting your business.

-Do some soul searching. Over the span of your life, what are the things (or thing) that you studied so carefully and observed so meticulously that you master the object (or idea) completely, or almost completely.

-For example. Maybe you've done a lot of travelling and know tons of stuff about tourism, hotels, resorts, entertainment facilities, shopping in tourism areas and so on. “So do I launch my tourism business now?” Wait. There's more.

-Now that you've done some soul searching and realized that you know a lot more than the average person about that object or idea (let's say tourism) you want to take some time to read books, magazine articles, newspaper articles, testimonials, join Facebook and Twitter groups and so on the topic, (in this case that would be tourism.)

-So you want your business idea to be as concrete as possible. In the tourism business, you want to study the legal aspects of owning a resort, and the security aspects, client satisfaction aspects, construction aspects, accounting aspects, seasonal tourist flow aspects, and a few “cheat” techniques (not really cheating, just that most resorts jack the prices up during peak seasons, supply and demand oblige.)

-Now that you have a very concrete idea of what that business of yours will be (I say resort, could be a restaurant, a pub, a clothing store, a bakery, a language school, a taekwondo school, you name it.)

-Clarity will be your best friend. If you run your business in clear, structured manner, and that the business works, now you can franchise your business and invite franchisees to open stores using your model around the city or country.

-Question: I franchising a store a good thing? Yes and no. It's a good source of revenue, and it prevents people from “copying” your model and beating you at competition. But then it's a lot of work, and you have to learn how to say no. That is if someone comes to you and wants to open a franchise but (pardon my French) looks too dumb (or not fit) to run a franchise of your store, you need to know how to reject them.

-Question: when will I make my first million? In theory, you should be so absorbed by running your business that you won't even notice you made your first million.

-Question; what's the best way to get funds to run my business? In theory, if your business idea is clear, viable, feasible, and that you have the drive it takes to run your business, you should not have problems gathering the funds.

What I suggest is that you start with a very small business (that way you will learn a few things about doing business) before you use the profits from your very small business to build a bigger business and so on.

Example: if you want to open a resort, start by renting rooms on Air B n B (for example) and study the flow of tourists renting those rooms (you'll learn a ton of stuff). Then rent more rooms, a few more rooms, save up a good stash of cash. If there's still not enough cash to open that hotel/resort, you can borrow a little bit here and there. Banks will be happy to loan you money if they know they're only funding 20% of your project.

Mistake: a guy once came up to me and said “I have a million dollars in savings and want to purchase a 4 million dollar hotel in Paris.” My advice was: you have a million dollars in savings, purchase a 300,000 dollar hotel in a small, charming, touristic town somewhere in France outside Paris.

You get the idea.

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