One of the unique value propositions I pride myself on in running my operation as a business coach is that of being able to extract value from each client while giving them value as well, in a manner which takes nothing away from them. For example, in asking some of the most successful of these clients of mine what advice they’d give to themselves if they could go back in time to back when they were starting out, this is some advice which I can pass on to my less successful clients without it taking anything away from the ones who shared that advice.
It’s a win-win-win situation and frankly makes a large chunk of my own job that much easier. Obviously I don’t just pass it on as is because we’re after all dealing with human beings here, so in some instances these business leaders who are happy to share their advice only really do so as part of the many exercises they’re required to complete, this in turn as part of the business development process.
In any case, here are some pointers which I feel make for some great advice anybody looking to get into a new business would benefit greatly from.
Use existing solutions
This is perhaps a paraphrasing of the famous phrase of avoiding the desire to try and reinvent the wheel. Yes, there are indeed certain businesses in which you’d be best served learning the ins and outs of the primary production process, but in every other instance it’s much easier and more cost effective to use existing solutions.
Just to make an extremely simple example to make a case in point (perhaps a simplistic example, I’ll concede) think about the development and evolution of the PC over the years. At the core of the Personal Computer is a little device called the microprocessor and without what is essentially the heart of the computer the PC would effectively be useless. Why doesn’t Intel manufacture the whole computer though and why don’t PC retailers who typically do nothing more than buy parts and assemble them try to manufacture their own microprocessor though?
It’s because it would be unnecessary and as an entrepreneur your aim is to make a profit, not reinvent the wheel.
Branch out cautiously
What this means is that you should indeed pursue opportunities which perhaps stretch beyond your core business offering, so long as they don’t compromise the quality of your core offering. If you’re going to branch out at all, target areas such as your supply chain, so this is when in our PC example you can perhaps look towards developing your own microprocessor, but it all still has to make business sense.
Take your business online
Admittedly the few leading business minds who came out with the advice of running your entire business online if you can did so with a bit of conflict in their delivery. These people are creators and they’re all for creating tangible solutions which solve problems, but they also understand the need for an up-and-coming entrepreneur to start generating some positive cash flow. So if you can indeed operate your business in the virtual space, you will save a whole lot on traditional overheads.