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Greetings!

Many successful businesspeople have commented that much of their success is due to having a mentor. I’ve had a few over the years but no one that seems to have guided me the way others have been guided. Maybe I had the wrong mentors or asked for the wrong help. Not sure exactly. I know I’ve done something right as I have survived owning my own business for more than 25 years.

I didn’t realize what an accomplishment that was until recently. I was attending a conference and one of the speakers said that more than 90% of businesses fail by their 10th year in business. Now after that I had to research it myself and there are many different statistics about how long the average business will last.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics two out of every three businesses with employees (a distinction to be sure) will last two years. Only about half of the remaining will last five years. So, I guess being in business, with employees, for more than 25 years is an accomplishment.

Why is that? Being a long-time entrepreneur, I do believe that on same level you need to be a workaholic. A while back, my sister decided she didn’t want the “corporate” job any longer, too much stress for her. So, she decided to become a realtor. Many don’t realize, you are your own boss, an entrepreneur as a realtor. You determine how you are going to find clients, spend your funds and grow your business.

She hated it. She called me after about a year and said, “I didn’t realize how hard this was and how much you do as the owner”. She said she was going back to her old job. She also commented about how she had a renewed respect for me.

I think one of the reasons people fail is they become afraid they will fail. I personally never saw failure as an option. Not sure why, just didn’t. I also believe that many businesses rely on someone else to understand their finances (a bookkeeper, CPA, etc). Now, I will always seek a professional’s advice, but at the same time, I know where and how I’m making money.

I’ve had companies over the years ask me to match pricing from a quote they got from someone else. Most of the time, I’ve already given my best price. I know I have a certain margin I need to make to stay in business. I’ve had companies call me a year later and ask “remember that job that you wouldn’t match the price?” And, since it was an odd job, I did remember. And they wanted me to match the price this year.

Of course, I said no and asked, why not get it from the company that did it for you before? And you know the answer, because they were out of business.

Being an entrepreneur in many ways is understanding your own strengths and weaknesses. I have hired good people over the years. Many staying with me for more than 10 years at a time. We have processes that we follow for just about everything.

And one is regularly reviewing our clients. And as we come into the fourth quarter, I am starting to Evaluate who is profitable for us and who might not be. Deciding if there are clients we need to “get rid of”. It sounds harsh, but we are all in business to make money, even the non-profits.

When was the last time you took a good look at your client mix? Are they all still working for you? If not, maybe it’s time to make a change for your long-term survival. You might be glad you did.

Danette


Did You Know:

When it comes to corporate responsibility and public perception, resilience is measured in the things one does to bring our environment back from the brink of being covered in garbage.

Danette

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Gossett Marketing

3701 Poinciana Avenue
Coconut Grove, FL
33133
US

danette@Gossettmktg.com
(800) 989-5690