Growth opportunities and doing the math

If it’s the right thing for your company to expand rapidly, consider giving some of your profits away.

This can be engaging a marketing company; hiring a top salesperson or sales organization; accepting money from investors; and whatever is relevant in your industry that fosters growth.

I talk to many business owners who are so focused on costs and percentages in a vacuum, that they lose the context of those numbers, don’t appreciate the ability of strong partners, and lose sight of why they want to grow in the first place. And because of that, their performance hits a ceiling and they set themselves up to either get eaten alive or remain unfulfilled.

Owning 100% of a million-dollar company sounds sexy; but for me – I’d rather own 1% of a billion-dollar company.

Of course – the above is over-simplified and there is much more to making a decision that relates to this. You need to make sure that growth is truly a lifestyle and decision with consequences that you’re prepared for (which is why I wrote “IF it’s the right thing…” in the beginning); you need to properly vet growth partners (they are not created equal, and the cheapest is never usually the best); you need to play out best/average/poor-case scenarios (plan for the best but prepare for the worst); and you need to take inventory of your current resources (is your existing manpower, capital, experience, and team reflective of your 1-, 3-, 5-, and 10-year goals?).

But don’t be so consumed with how much something costs that your blinders are on to how an investment could return for you. Marrying your spouse COSTS you. Having kids COSTS you. Buying a nicer, more reliable car COSTS you. Going to the gym COSTS you. But they can be exponentially rewarding, and if you only lived life based on what’s safe and how much something costs…it’d be a sad life on at least, 1,031 levels #exaggeration

If you really want to measure costs, compute the loss of opportunity as well. Don’t orphan that super important metric.

Let go of what is, so that you can receive what’s possible. If you want to go fast, go alone; but if you want to go far, go together.

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Things people disagree with me on

Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.” – Mark Twain, an incredible writer and thinker whom I would’ve been star-struck to meet if he were still alive.

In an effort to peel myself out of the reactive, unoriginal, brainless thinking that being busy and surrounded by tradition and comfort encourage…I’ve been trying to take inventory of my thoughts and behaviors and asking myself these questions:

  • Is this true?
  • Is this reflective of who I am and what I love?
  • Am I just thinking/doing this purely out of comfort, avoiding conflict, convenience, and safety?
  • Am I just thinking/doing this purely out of tradition and “the way it’s always been?”
  • Is there a better/different way?
  • What would happen if I did/thought the opposite?
  • How would a successful person I look to think about or do this?

Here are some of my beliefs/actions that you and/or most will argue against:

  • The current education system has – for better or worse – programmed students to become good workers – not world-changers. They are taught what to do, not how to think. Home schooling is one solution that – when done effectively – can help students find themselves and have a real-world experience that’s relevant.
  • You should put as little down on a house as possible. You can use the money you withheld to invest at better returns, will have more tax-deductible interest to write off, and/or will have a bigger cushion in case anything happens (and they will happen!). Your equity will be destroyed if the economy downswings; you will enjoy the same increase in value if the economy upswings; and when you do need equity i.e. lost a job, have debt, etc. it will be difficult-to-impossible to access.
  • It’s safer to invest in a startup franchise than a mature franchise. I may be drinking the Kool-Aid here; and of course, this requires proper thinking/research/struturing, but I’m happy to explain my perspective and share case studies in a future post.
  • Being on-trend is dangerous. You risk being buried with everyeone else swimming in the same waters and you won’t be changing the world being like everyone else.

 

I have a lot more ideas to share, but that’s for a future post. Not because I am an awesome storyteller and want to create a cliff-hanger; but because I forgot to jot them down and my memory sucks lol!

Until then, would like to know if anybody in the blogosphere would like to share beliefs/actions that they see a lot of disagreement/resistence on. Please share!