How To Start A Small Business Part 1
9 years ago, I decided I would rather struggle and starve than find a normal 9-5 hr (is there such thing as 9-5? I wonder) JOB. I was just a greenhorn right out of high school at ripe age of 17. I had my shares of ups and downs. And boy, do I have few horror stories to share? Today after putting together a successful business, I often wonder if I’d do things differently if I have to start again. Of course there are tons of things but I am going to highlight most important ones here. I know these are going to help you a lot.
I don’t know why you are starting out? may be you don’t like your boss or may be you think it’s better to work yourself and make all the money. Regardless of your reasons, you’ll find this list helpful. Don't forget you can use these techniques on internet too. # 1. Have More confidence in Your Skill : No matter who you meet, be it an expert businessman or an authority figure in your niche.
Have more confidence. I cannot stress this enough. If you have worked hard to learn a skill then I can bet, there are only a few people better than you. I was a programmer and I understood this unknowingly to the extent I was arrogant about it. I have met many highly paid programmers and knew their skills weren’t at my level. If I start again, I’d not mind crossing the arrogance line once again. Why? If you are confident in your skill, that’ll come across in your communication and will help you land a client or two regardless of your experience. I had more than few HR managers of big firms looking to hire me. # 2. No More Free Work : I’d do no work which doesn’t get me paid right now.
Nope, never. I did this mistake to “build my portfolio”. And trust me not many people trust your skills if you are working for free. If you like doing charity work, then I can show you tons of guys who’ll squeeze every drop of blood out of you before you say “Hi”. # 3. Give discounts or Free for promise of more work: Now my first client was like “If you work for me, I’ll get you this guy, that guy and that guy’s account and more over you guys aren’t even experienced, nobody will pay you a single dime”. If that happens to you. Find a better client. Trust me… This client was big headache. I had a bad hunch, but my partner told me to go ahead.
Now this client would change his requirements of this project every day and then later cut down the deadline from 90 days to 50 days. If you have been in programming, then you know it’s not easy at all. From coding, to testing and debugging. We worked like maniacs… and what we got? Nothing, Nada, zippo. No more price cutting or competing on price. You'll always end up on losing side. Well the only good thing we got out of this client was understanding how to deal with people like him. That’s it. Never got paid for this project. My finger tips still hurt after working for him day in day out.
I might talk more about dealing with guys like him in another post. You'll read 4 more tips in my next part of this series.
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