Would you like to start your own business? (Part 1)


Starting your own business by Linda Torres (Nina Trs) Employee Retirement Services

“I make $5,000 a week with this simple trick online!” “I sell $10,000 a month on Ebay!” “Make hundreds of dollars a week stuffing envelopes!”  A few years back these quotes probably  made us click the link in a heartbeat, even if they sounded too good to be true.  I remember being asked by clients if I knew of a legitimate work-at-home opportunity because they had lost money online on scams or by mail.  Are there any real “work-at-home” opportunities?  Yes there are.  But first let me give you my pep talk in regards to “Profits are Better than Wages” philosophy.  Honestly it’s NOT my quote but of Mr. Jim Rohn.  I’ve lived by this philosophy for many years and have passed it on to many friends and clients.

To me the saddest part of an ailing economy is the high number of unemployed people that truly depend on someone or some company to give them a job thus the financial future of their family depends on that single act.  Instead of waiting for a call back from an interview or waiting for the help wanted section of our local newspaper why can’t we CREATE an opportunity for ourselves?  A company can close your position, fire you or simply replace you for no reason but on the other hand no one can stop you from making a sell or soliciting business. If you empower yourself with the necessary tools and knowledge, your family’s financial future will never be jeopardized again.  Take control of how and how much money you will make based on PROFITS and not wages.  There are a number of ways to make PROFITS: owning your own brick and mortar retail place, a home-based business, as an independent consultant/contractor, and network marketing to name a few. I understand and am a firm believer that being a small business owner is NOT for everyone BUT it can be done by ANYONE.  In other words, I realize that some people lack IDEAS or initiative BUT, what truly keeps a person from starting a home-based business or general business for that matter is the LACK of education (and money in some instances but not all businesses require money).  Lack of education or knowledge equals uncertainty.  Uncertainty leads to anxiety and anxiety will freeze anyone and ultimately prevent them from even starting part-time.

There are several principals you must understand and take to heart if you want to start a small business.

  1. Personal Development: First and foremost I cannot emphasize enough on the importance of personal development.  You can only achieve as much as you invest in YOURSELF.  We shouldn’t wish for less problems but wish we were better skilled to solve them.   Knowledge is POWER.  Knowledge will give you the power to create opportunities for yourself for your family. Knowledge helps you think outside the box.  How many books have you read these past 90 days? How many workshops or seminars have you attended to help improve your skills (sales, computer, management, etc.) this past year?  Do you own any motivational cds to listen periodically?  I have books, videos and motivational cds throughout my house and office.  Some are over 10 years old and I still pop them in my car once in a while.  I personally recommend books from Robert Kiyosaki and Jim Rohn.
  1. You need a business philosophy.  Better yet..what is YOUR business philosophy? Why do you want to start a small business? Are you broke, unemployed, too much time on your hands, hate your boss/co-workers? These are NOT good reasons to start your business. Why? Because all those things can change.  Once they change or improve you will lose focus on your dream.  You can have the best product, best support system, best tools, but unless you have the right philosophy that DRIVES you, then NOTHING will happen.  What is YOUR story?  For example some people will buy wholesale products because he/she thinks it will sell well.  But, if she has NO passion or deep down hearted belief in it, it’s going to be a difficult sale.
  2. Profits are better than wages.  Once you learn that, once you understand that, you will start making serious money.  Wages are capped.  There is only so much you can do with overtime.  Profits have NO limit.  If you are currently working at an 8 – 5 job simply say: I’m working full time on my job and part-time on my fortune!
  3. Law of averages.  When starting a business do not go with the idea that it will, it must go well 100% of the time.  The law of averages applies to everything: sales, test scores, sports, etc.  Soon in your business an average will appear.  After X numbers of estimates or quotes a client will buy.  After visiting X number of business owners one will say yes. Take notes and an average will appear.  Averages do change once we become better.
  4. You must learn to motivate YOURSELF and comfort YOURSELF.  When we have an 8-5pm job our bodies/mind knows that we MUST get up otherwise we might jeopardize our job.  Once self-employed there is nothing or no one to tell us what time or how many days we must work.  Family and friends will be the first ones to discourage us from our dream with statements like: “you need a job” “you need something secure” “when are you getting a real job” etc.  As small business owners we must learn to block that negativity and comfort ourselves.

Now that you are determined to start something let’s talk business.  Perhaps you don’t know what yet but you are motivated to take charge of your financial future.  First of all I must admit that Brownsville is a tough market.  Don’t know what it is but, Harlingen and the McAllen metro area have a much better client base.  You must be patient and CREATIVE in order to sell to Brownsville.  There are several resources you can use to help you determine what could work best for you.  Once you gather a list of perhaps 3 or 5 possible business ideas select the one that you see yourself being passionate about.  Make sure there is a demand for your product or services before any kind of investment both monetary and time spent.

  1. Make a list of your current skills (e.i. construction, cooking/baking, crafts, landscaping, good sales person, hairstylist, etc.)
  2. Make an appointment with a local bookkeeper and ask them what businesses are having more success in Brownsville and perhaps include select geographic areas like north side, southmost area, downtown, etc.
  3. Visit your local SBA in Harlingen for reading material and available trainings.
  4. UTPA –SBA has a program that they can help you write your business plan for free along with your business cards, brochures/flyers.
  5. Visit http://www.license.state.tx.us/  to see if you will need any special license or permits for your specific business.
  6. Surround yourself with people that have a similar mindset.  People with an entrepreneur spirit will encourage you to start your business and applaud you once you are up and running.  On the contrary people that are comfortable with their 8-5 hourly job will try to persuade you to get a “secure job”.   I love talking about business and business ideas. I can do this for hours.  If you’ve been pondering on a small business idea for a while and would like some insight or need more concepts feel free to contact me.  I’m available at all and odd hours.  That’s the beauty of being your own boss.

Part 2 of “Starting Your Own Business” will consists of a list of legitimate businesses like: Work-from-Home, Network Marketing, Import-Export, Wholesaler, Drop shipping, Ebay and Youtube.


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