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Category Archives: Self Evaluation

Aspiring Entrepreneurs: Change Your Lifestyle Prior to Launch

By | Business By The Book, Cash Flow Management, Financing a Startup, Ownership & Purpose, Self Evaluation, Starting Up | No Comments
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If you are serious about starting or buying your own business, one of the very first things to do is change your lifestyle. Anytime God calls us to obedience, it is often accompanied by a drastic change in direction. Becoming an entrepreneur is no different. If you have the typical lifestyle of credit card payments, car payments, and a house payment, it will be nearly impossible for you to start/buy a business and get it ramped up to the same level of income you need in short order. The question we should ask ourselves at this stage is not “how…

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Transitioning from a Job to a Startup

By | Business By The Book, Coming Up with an Idea, Planning, Self Evaluation, Starting a Family Business, Starting a Part Time Business, Starting Up | No Comments

Q: This question is related to transitioning. My husband has a job with great benefits and is making more than he ever has in his line of work, which he has been doing for 20 years. In the beginning of his career, he always wanted his own business but it just never worked out. As our oldest children are entering the teen years, going out on his own could serve many purposes: to earn income, teach the children about entrepreneurship, and develop a family business. How should we prepare for the big leap so to speak? It just seems like we should…

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Starting Your Business – Part 3

By | Business By The Book, Buying a Business, Buying a Franchise, Coming Up with an Idea, Planning, Self Evaluation, Starting a Family Business, Starting a Part Time Business | No Comments

In my initial post in this series I suggested a step-by-step process for launching a business. This article will focus on Step 3 – Evaluate, where you evaluate the opportunities you’ve identified. (See Part 2 of this series if you missed my explanation of Step 2 – Generate). Evaluating Opportunities – In this phase, the ideas generated in Step 2 are evaluated using the criteria established in Step 1. By using this methodical process of starting a business – and with God’s guidance – you will hopefully develop a high-quality business idea that can be pursued with confidence and enthusiasm. In this phase you want to eliminate bad…

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Starting Your Business – Part 2

By | Business By The Book, Coming Up with an Idea, Planning, Self Evaluation, Starting Up | No Comments

In the first post in this series, I suggested a step-by-step process for launching a business. Since we’ve already established a detailed process for Step 1– Define, where you define the evaluation criteria for a business idea, this post will focus on Step 2 – Generate, where you generate ideas. Generating Ideas – Your goal is to identify unmet needs, identify products and services to serve those unmet needs, and then identify various product and service platforms that are able to deliver the necessary products or services to serve those unmet needs. Always start and finish with customers. For example, the best Smartphone applications (“apps”)…

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Starting Your Business – Part 1

By | Business By The Book, Planning, Self Evaluation, Starting a Family Business, Starting a Part Time Business, Starting Up | No Comments
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In addition to wealth generation and Kingdom impact (such as we see with the Cook’s Pest Control case), having your own business – especially a family business – can also reform the family economy and relationships. A family business can reverse the conditioning by our consumer-driven economy to spend our earnings on wood, hay, and stubble rather than invest for a future return. Further, a family business can re-integrate the family, since one of the unfortunate consequences of the industrial age has been the “disintegration” of the family as we typically go in opposite directions to work. Finally, a family working together…

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Your Business Model Determines Your Success or Failure

By | Business By The Book, Financing a Small Business, Growing a Business, Organization & Strategy, Self Evaluation, Writing a Business Plan | No Comments

In business school, I had the privilege to read, study and analyze 1,600 business cases and as a strategy consultant I had the opportunity to transform several different businesses and industries. Additionally, over the past two decades I have reviewed, invested in, and created hundreds of business plans as an entrepreneur, Entrepreneur in Residence/Venture Partner with two venture capital firms and Chairman of a Seed Capital investment firm. One of the lessons that I’ve learned — often painfully as I look back on my mistakes — is that business models really do matter and have a tremendous impact on the…

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Preparing to Be an Entrepreneur – Example Roadmap

By | Business By The Book, Coming Up with an Idea, Planning, Self Evaluation | No Comments

  I encourage young aspiring entrepreneurs to prepare themselves by creating a roadmap to equip themselves for entrepreneurship. That roadmap might consist of academic preparation in a formal classroom setting such as a degree in accounting, finance, marketing, etc. (with specific goals to intentionally acquire specific skills), online classes, mentoring and apprenticeship programs with experienced entrepreneurs in the targeted industry, and specific job opportunities. Let’s say a young aspiring entrepreneur wants to be a commercial real estate developer where the entrepreneur will raise capital from investors to buy raw land and develop it into commercial real estate projects. That is…

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The Best Way to Generate a Startup Idea

By | Business By The Book, Coming Up with an Idea, Planning, Self Evaluation, Starting a Part Time Business, Starting Up | No Comments

Q: What is the best way to generate startup ideas? A: I would recommend that you first establish your criteria for a successful business: Personal criteria (your spiritual gifts, your passion to serve others, your abilities, your personality, your experiences, your ideal context (such as lifestyle) and your resources); Spiritual criteria (God-honoring business concept, value-added product or service, product or service that does not cause anyone to stumble, product or service that promotes increase, high-quality work environment); and Business criteria (industry, operational, financial, product and customer criteria) Then, once you’ve established your criteria, identify various unmet needs, products and services to serve those unmet needs…

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Should I Buy Into This Franchise?

By | Business By The Book, Buying a Business, Buying a Franchise, Organization & Strategy, Self Evaluation, Starting Up | No Comments

  Q: I am a Christian and college graduate with eighteen years of financial services experience. I am considering a franchise opportunity in senior care, but the franchisor (a friend) has yet to document the entire business opportunity and is offering me a discounted beta rate to be his first franchisee. Can your service help me assess this investment? Also, is it a mistake to venture into an industry I have no experience in? My wife is a new Registered Nurse, but with no experience either. A: First of all, franchises are typically a good way to go for an inexperienced entrepreneur…

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