Do you have your own business?

Discussion in 'Community' started by njmac, Jan 25, 2005.

  1. njmac macrumors 68000

    njmac

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    #1
    I am curious if anyone has their own biz, and can give me a little advice.

    I gave a wine class ( learned about wine and tasted 8 different wines) 2 months ago. It was very successful, I had about 75 people attend, and I charged $129 pp.

    I was also thinking I could get people to give a class on what they are experts at, say like filmmaking and cater to a college age audience in a college town.
    I know there are college age kids here as well as business people, do you think this is a good idea?

    Another one: with my mac, I was thinking of doing slideshows for events. I would buy a 100" screen and a digital projector.

    What do you think?

    Does anyone have any other good business ideas you would like to share?
     
  2. wordmunger macrumors 603

    wordmunger

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2003
    Location:
    North Carolina
    #2
    Well, I used to own a business -- book design and editing, and Web design. It got as big as 5 employees, but broke up because of a dispute with my partner.

    ADVICE: Don't hire anyone full-time until you're absolutely certain you can fill every moment of their schedule. Hiring freelance help is more expensive on an hourly rate, but you only use the hours you need.

    Don't take on a partner until you've spent a LOT of time working with them--and even then, be suspicious. I worked with my partner for 6 months before selling her half my business. She seemed great to work with and a good person until we actually were running the business together. Then it was a nightmare.

    Even when you have a LOT of business, you still need to be working on finding new jobs/clients. Very busy times will be followed by dry spells, so you constantly need to be looking forward.

    Stick with what you do best and what you like to do best. Don't go into a new line of business just because it seems "hot" -- go there because you are the best person to provide that product or service.

    Don't try to compete on price. You don't want to be known as "el-cheapo" provider of X; you want to be known as "the best" provider of X.

    Your ideas sound like good ones, but make sure you have a good reason (or preferably, many good reasons) that someone should hire YOU to do it and not someone else.
     
  3. njmac thread starter macrumors 68000

    njmac

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    #3
    Thank you! The best advice comes from those with experience, thanks for sharing yours. I'm still in the planning stage and need all the info I can get.
     
  4. makisushi macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2004
    Location:
    Northern VA
    #4
    I own my a business, and my advice to you is:
    1. always be the one in charge.
    2. keep meticulous records
    3. take chances
    4. you must go out and get the business yourself, don't sit around and wait for them to call you, because they won't


    the list can go on and on.
    Good luck with your endeavor. It sounds to me like you have a good idea.
    Owning your business is the best and most rewarding feeling in the world.
     
  5. kiwi-in-uk macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2004
    Location:
    AU
    #5
    All of the above, and ...

    a) Do some market research
    b) Don't diversify too quickly (spend some time thinking about what exactly it is you are offering)
    c) Don't take on any debt

    Good luck!
     
  6. AmigoMac macrumors 68020

    AmigoMac

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2003
    Location:
    l'Allemagne
    #6
    I have had my own business -IT Support- for a couple of years, together with my regular job, I'm starting again but now I'm going by big fishes and not just casual customers, do a good market research, prices, and focus one thing at the time while you are starting, then you may think about 2 or 3 activities. Good luck!
     
  7. njmac thread starter macrumors 68000

    njmac

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    #7
    Thanks everyone for your responses. I am taking notes, and taking this very seriously. I am lucky enough that I don't have to survive on the income of my business right now, but I hope to someday. Not taking on any debt.... well, that is going to be tough at first, but great advice none the less. Thank you all, this community is the best find on the internet!
     
  8. makisushi macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2004
    Location:
    Northern VA
    #8
    Personally, I disagree about not taking out any debt.
    As they say, "It takes money to make money..." what they should have said, is "It takes other people's money to make money"

    It will be a personal decision for you, but the SBA exists for a reason.
     
  9. wordmunger macrumors 603

    wordmunger

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2003
    Location:
    North Carolina
    #9
    I think a real key here is to have a plan for paying off the debt you incur. Cash flow is THE issue, and if you can't meet your fixed expenses (including debt), your business will tank FAST.
     
  10. killuminati macrumors 68020

    killuminati

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2004
    #10
    Hey, I'm 14 and I wouldnt call it a business, but thats exactly what I do. I make slideshows on my pb for events and then display them with a digital projector. I enjoy that more than babysitting :D
     
  11. njmac thread starter macrumors 68000

    njmac

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    #11
    That's great, how is business? How did you get the word out?
     
  12. killuminati macrumors 68020

    killuminati

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2004
    #12
    Well, I started off just doing things for friends and family. And each time more people would see them and the more things I would be asked to do. Just word of mouth :).
     

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