Sunday, November 6, 2011
This is soo great!
BlogHer.com has partnered with Starbucks and Opportunity Finance Network to get the word out about Create Jobs for USA
Here's the deal. Everyone is worried about jobs and the economy. This organization is collecting and then donating money to help small businesses and entrepreneurs. I absolutely love this and will gladly donate to this very worthy cause.
As an entrepreneur and small business owner myself, I can totally relate.
About 8 years ago, my husband, Robbie, and I decided to start a swimming pool service business. Because he was working at an auto dealership selling cars and I was staying at home and home schooling our son, we decided I would get it started part time while he continued to sell cars. We literally started from nothing. We learned the legal issues necessary for our industry and since we were too late to be entered in the local phone book, we ran an ad in the paper. We then got set up with a distributor, bought about $300 in supplies and home office equipment, and became official business owners. We worked from home for about 5 years gradually growing our service business.
In addition to that, we found a network marketing business that we just loved, Monavie. We really weren't looking for a network marketing business at the time, but Robbie was having some serious health issues and this worked for us miraculously. We really only started that business to get our products free. We fell in love with the company and decided to work that business part time while we build our pool business and Robbie's car selling job.
Right around that time, the car business really started to tank. He worked for a GM dealer and we all know where that went. They kept re-structuring his pay plan so that every time he started to make some really good money, they would basically take it from him. We learned that some companies don't like to give too much money to their employees, even though he was working on straight commission. Every day he would tell me how much he hated his job.
Meanwhile, the pool business was growing and I began to notice that there are a lot of swimming pools in our area with homeowners taking care of them themselves. To buy supplies, they had to drive at least 30 miles in either direction to the nearest pool store. Every time he told me how he hated his job, I suggested he quit. He wasn't making any money anyway and working really long hours. He wouldn't quit. He was afraid. He was afraid that a pool store would cost too much money and couldn't support itself. I assured him that the store would make more money than the service business but his insecurity outweighed his desire for job freedom.
Every night he went to bed afraid. He told me through all 3 rounds "I think I'm gonna lose my job tomorrow." Then on the 4th round, he called me that morning and said "I just lost my job." While that scared me a little too, I said "THAT'S GREAT!!! We can open our store now. This is really the best thing that can happen to us." I didn't want him to know that I was a little scared too, but I knew in my heart that I was right. He didn't really believe me but went along anyway.
*As an aside: Its my belief that in a marriage or partnership, only one person can freak out. The other person is responsible for being the calming influence. Every now and then, I have to remind my husband that its MY turn to freak out!! He's a good sport about it. :)*
That was 3 years ago and our business has continued to grow and expand. In fact, this winter we're going to be selling 2 lines of hot tubs. That's in addition to the fact that we've also just recently partnered with a local pool builder as well as selling above ground pools.
Every now and then, as he tallies up the total income for the day, he says "Man!!! Who knew it would could be this great?" I slowly raise my hand. :)
I feel blessed that we decided to start the business before we needed to while we didn't really need the money. I also feel like God has been guiding our path each step of the way. I feel blessed for the Monavie business, because the extra income there has been HUGE as well as the health benefits we've received. I truly don't think we could have done this while Robbie was in such poor health. Because of all that, we were able to start our pool business without having to borrow money. In addition to all that, I haven't really noticed any drop in business due to the economy. However, we did open the store in a bad economy and it's never really come back yet. So, who knows how great it could be when the economy DOES turn around.
I'm listening to an audio book right now written by Donald Trump and Robert Kiyosaki entitled The Midas Touch: Why Some Entrepreneurs Get Rich - And Why Most Don't. I recommend everyone considering business ownership read that book.
One of my favorite things in the book is when they talk about how too much education is actually detrimental to effective business ownership. Too much education leads to too much specialization. In business, one needs to know a little bit about every aspect of their business. So a person would be better off learning all they can about business, sales, marketing, technology, legal aspects specific to their industry, and accounting instead of focusing only on their talent or specialization.
My philosophy has been from the get-go, if you don't have a job...make one! Create Jobs For USA is helping people do just that. Go check it out and if you feel called, give em a donation. Its a heckuva lot better than waiting for the government to take care of us all!