Give Yourself Patience

Justin is considering starting an auto detail business, and he wants Dave's advice on how to start this business. Dave tells him he first needs to choose to do something he loves.

QUESTION: Justin in Tampa is considering starting an auto detail business, and he wants Dave's advice on how to start this business. Dave tells him he first needs to choose to do something he loves.

ANSWER: Running your own business, you will find that your boss is a jerk and he works you like an animal. Working for yourself is tough. Given that you're going to put in the hours, the blood, the sweat, and the tears, you better be doing something you love. If you don't love auto detailing and you're just doing it because it's plausible or because you think you can make a little money doing it, it's not really a business. It's more of a part-time job you're operating as a small business, and I would probably go another direction.

Think of something five years from now you'd like to have 300 people doing with you. That's what I would pour my time and energy into. Do what you love because you'll always be better at it. Pay cash and have a written game plan. Begin to lay out your business plan, which means how are we going to do our marketing? What equipment and supplies are needed? What do we project our revenues to be? What are we going to charge per unit of service or widget? What do we have to do to create that service or widget? Begin to lay all of that out as if you had to write a report for college on how you're going to start this business. That's what a business plan looks like.

I think you're going to do fine because you have a lot of entrepreneurial spirit. Take your time. Give yourself the patience, and know that you're probably not going to make $100,000 your first year doing it; most people don't. It takes years to get to that for a lot of things.

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