Do you want to start a business that compliments your life, that works with your schedule, provides extra income, grows, and that makes you proud?
When I was in college, topics like economics, marketing, and starting a company where far from my mind. I was busy writing poetry and short stories, playing jazz, and chasing girls.
Making money with a business was something I never thought I’d be interested in and was reserved for only special people. Back then, no one was talking about success or starting a business as much as you see today.
Trends on social media have changed all that. Now it seems likes everyone and their mother is talking about starting or growing a business.
I spend a good deal of my time thinking about how to do it for myself.
The cool thing is that it’s possible for anyone — it’s not reserved for a select few that have a certain personality. Business accepts all personality types.
Most people just talk about doing it and never try. I’ve invested my time and my money and have learned a lot from my experiments.
Since then, I’ve tried to turn a few projects into a working business. I’ve made some money with them but nothing sustainable like a full-fledged business.
When I look back at my failed attempts, the words of Jay Abraham keep replying in my head, that you have to have a proven model first.
If you asked me why I fell short, I’d say that I based my idea off of an unproven model hoping that it would just work out because I was passionate about it.
I like how Ray Dalio says that you have to be ultra-realistic. I take this to mean that you should look at what is already working and base your idea around that instead of solely your passion.
Passion is great but it can run out when you need to pay rent. That’s when reality kicks you in the gut.
Is this working or is it not? That’s an ultra-realistic question to ask yourself.
To be realistic in the Abraham or Dalio way, you have to ask what business models work…
What is a proven business model? A system that generates consistent sales.
There’s a reason why cars, plungers, and t-shirts still sell. Because the product and marketing are built around a proven model.
The system is both your product and the marketing of that product. Marketing is just the reasons why someone should buy your product or service.
Photo by Headway
For your first business, why would you start anywhere else than with a proven model? If you are like me, you don’t have endless amounts of money or time to run a million experiments.
Your task is to decide on a proven model and apply it to what you want to do.
Even further, the proven model should influence the business that you want to start from the beginning. This way, your idea is based in reality and has a greater shot at succeeding.
Why not choose something to get your feet wet that has proof that it works? Maybe it’s not the ideal, dream business but it a realistic way to start rather than burning out from a passion project.
When I took the strength finder test a few years ago it told me that I not only loved ideas, but that I liked the future. That means I’m basically a professional daydreamer. That is not really helpful when it comes to starting a business that has a proven track recording of making money.
This line of thought comes from trying many projects and not being able to keep the enthusiasm and flow of money from them alive. I have to respect the wisdom of a multi-millionaire marketer like Jay Abraham and follow his simple advice.
It’s great to dream but if you’re anything like me, you can get caught up in the flow of creativity but not sure how it fits in with reality.
Why dream big for your first business? Who runs a marathon before they take their first step? Nobody.
Then why do we do this with business, myself included? It makes no sense.
Reality is not a bad thing. It shows us what works and what doesn’t. Yes, reality changes too. Airplanes and flying have become a new aspect of reality but I’m not concerned with that here. You don’t need to invent the next technology to have a viable business.
Is it really wise to start from scratch if you are working a day job and want more income coming in on the side? Probably not. You can develop your plan of world domination after you get out of the gutter.
All that is required is basing your business on a proven model, one that is successful that you don’t have to create from nothing. Starting from scratch is not leveraging the hard work that others have already done.
Call it your starter business if you want, but use it to provide a secure reality for you and your family.
Pursue your passion project after but get this done first so you have the freedom, the time and resources, to create whatever you want in the future.