- Due to sheer luck and due to the help of some family members and relatives, I jumped into starting my own business. It was the mid of 2021 and having built Websites for others in 2020 which was due to the pandemic, I jumped at the opportunity to start my own business. I incorporated a Web Development Agency and that is how it started.
- I want to make this a practice and will be posting a post every year I am in business.
Lesson 1: Traction is everything. Getting customers is hard
No one cares if you are in business for 1 Year or 150 years, all they care about is results. If you can bring it to them, they will pay you. They will pay you well. However, if your business cannot show any apparent result in a short period of time you are screwed.
Example from my Business – No one cared that I was new. I got business because I could deliver
Lesson 2: Word of Mouth > Words on Internet
People who came to us to build their Websites and Apps came to us because they saw their friends using us. They never had a look at our Website. Sure, they had a peek when they had to make advance payments etc. but it never was a deciding factor. Everything you do will contribute to the success. But anything you don’t may lead to failure.
Example from my Business – I had people give business to me left right center just because I was recommended by a friend. I have no contact with the original client.
Focus on the Business not on the Product
Lesson 3: Time is your most valuable asset
After a detailed analysis of our Chart of Accounts, it was found that the most time wasting clients were the ones paying us the least. We have made sure to make it a practice to never go to a clients place in order to make a deal. Business and Friends are separate. If they want something badly, they will agree for an Online meet. No one gains anything when you go to a client’s place and the client is thinking – Why should I give business to you? It just wastes everyone’s time
Example from my Business – Stats don’t lie. These are my business stats.
Online Meets only
Lesson 4: People break promises.
We found a pattern with all our Bad Paymasters, they all talked big. People use authority and prestige to get away from or break rules. All our good paymasters were other small businesses with something to lose. On the other hand, most defaulters were large and thought they could get away without paying.
Example from my Business – I always take advances and never go live without full payment. This is after being burned.
Always have leverage. Never deliver fully without complete payment.
Lesson 5: Your Network is your Net worth
No one gives business to someone whom no one knows. Everyone wants to please the Mr. Popular.
Example from my Business – A Network called BNI – Business Network International has been one of the best investments I have made in my business
Try to connect with as many people as possible
Lesson 6: You never know who knows whom
Just like Bacon’s number. You will be connected to most people within 7 or 8 connections. You never know, some big shot client can be just 2 LinkedIn connections away. Do an exercise, search for someone random and famous on LinkedIn. You will be shocked how connected you are to them.
Lesson 7: Anything remotely warm is exponentially better than Cold
People hate cold calls. Or anything cold. Best way to connect to someone is not by shooting a message. It is by asking the connected friend to introduce you to them. Better is a joint call or a conference call. Where the connector introduces both parties to each other. This way all 3 are happy.
Lesson 8: People are Conceited. Givers Gain
Why should someone give you business? Why should someone introduce you to someone else? People only take it as a privilege if you have done something for them in the past. Be it a small or a large favor. Collaboration is the way. Give business to get back Business.
Lesson 9: Gratitude for being part of the Economy.
A gives business to B. B gives business to C. C gives business to D. You know where this is going. Z will give business to you. Have patience. There is a part of the pie for everyone. You can’t be King of the Hill if there is no Hill.
Lesson 10: Work Hard. Period.
No substitute for Hard Work