|Posted on 3 January, 2019 at 13:00|
So here goes! First ever blog!
Some days my brain could literally explode with ideas and things to write about, no idea if these things are even good or will help me or anyone else but a blog is a blog. Full of information and experiences good and bad. The other thing is people do actually ask me for advice as i am very 'long in the tooth ' as it goes now days in business. 'Long in the tooth' maybe for 10 years of being self employed and running my own business.Some might say 10 years isnt even that long. Who knows. All i know is ill write and if someone can learn from it then good.
In my personal opinion i think that i have just ran for 10 years and basically uncovered every single mistake there is to be made in business, as basically if you are going to run a business you are putting yourself out there for some very very hard work, and mistakes! You will find all the 'i shouldnt have done that' things out till you start sailing along actually doing something that is really great. So if a beginner asks me somethng i will know the exact answer to their question and the 'what not to do' and they are made up !As how would they know, i will because i will have done it wrong one time or another and learned as i went along and im not scared to say that im not perfect at all just hugry to work and be a sucess.
I spent my first couple years picking peoples brains and i still do. If i get together with another business owner if it be in the butty shop next door to me, the hardresser doing my hair, the lady that runs the suppliers who supplies me with all my equipment , every person has the same things to talk about. Everyone has the same moans and every one has the same abilty to share their knowledge. I love meeting other people that are willing to share things they are in to at the present time, like what is helping them out at that moment or what they have discovered. Helping others in business is what i like to see. I dont think every business person is like this but postive relationships are like gold. If you know another person in ANY business in a good way this can only be a positive thing.
I am just going to outline (or try to ) the best things that i have taken from people in the business in the very beginning that helped me first off, i was in an employed job from being 16 at the Wigan Pier Nightspot , i had my little boy very young at the age of 19, there is nothing like being on your own with a child with absolutely nothing but yourself to rely on to kick start your inner self drive and fight. I dont know if i would have been so driven if i had not have landed on my own with Charlie but i am a very very driven individual, at 19 i knew i really really wanted to cut the crap and make something of myself , i dont know if it was just the way i was or the fact me and Charlie needed to do something quick sharp to save our little young selves from poverty, no prospects and basically not having anything in life and today i stand knowing i never gave up, im still self employed and i never did go back to a 9-5 no matter how bad it got.
First bit of simple advice i took -
This advice was given to me by a Mr Tony Seddon - i used to work as a cleaner at FX Leisure in orrell and there was a man he will be around 55 now he was the husband of Penny a girl who used to teach the classes in the gym. I knew he was a business consultant, but a consultant top of his game, i asked him what he thought of what i was doing as a business and his thoughts, i cant even remember if he even asked me what i was doing. His advice was very quick and efficient and probably because i wasnt paying for his advice and he wanted to get rid of me quick , maybe not as he is a really nice guy. He said - work out the profit of your job, for the profit you take off your job and how long it takes you to get it and what you have actually been paid per hour. This will give you the answer to if you are even making any money, how much and if to carry on . At the time i was a cleaner and a trader, i was buying and selling things, so i worked out how many things i had sold that week, and how much actual profit i had made.
My first business in 2002 was a cleaning business (still is ) , i was a solo cleaner and i am still 'a cleaner'. Ill be 'a cleaner ' till i die. If someone asks me 'what do you do' i always reply 'i am a cleaner'. I got a clening job at FX Leisure in Orrell when Charlie was 1 in 2002 and i started to clean peoples houses for £5 per hour from then on , same houses every week, walked there because i could not drive and i used to customers things to clean. That ladies and gentlemen is what you do when you are 20 , cant drive and have a small 1 year old, and i took Charlie with me, i cleaned peoples houses for them that didnt mind me bringing my child with me, at £5 per hour profit. In 2002 £10 would have fed us for a week anyway. But everyone knew me! 'There is that cleaner she cleans the gym when it shuts and she cleans everyones house ! I learned everythig i know about cleaning myself and everyone knows my history that has seen me over the years with my cleaning stuff. So the profit from that was fine for our needs, a future?? I couldnt see one at the time as there were no opportunities to grow really, but the business start up cost was nil, the outlay was nil. There are not many businesses you can start withabsolutely nothing. The difference is the 'business ' i was running was a job not a business. I started a business yes but i was just basically creating a job fr myself. I was working in my business not on my business which is a totally different thing from the cleaning i do today.
My trading days started years later when i could drive. At the time where i was getting more hungry for running something more real. I had made sales that saturday of £120 which i was absolutely over the moon about ! I was there happy as larry after getting up at 6am saturday morning along side a full time job happily counting my £120 this would have been alot more than it sounds in 2004. I then sat down and worked out the things i had sold that day and it became clear the things i had bought and the things i was selling actually cost me £60 and the pitch fee at earls town market was £26 so i was actually left with a £36 profit for the day, so i was on the market for 6 hours and so i was working for myself for £6 per hour not to mention all the hours i spent finding the things i bought to sell, I have also never found trading thsat easy as even then the internet was a big thing. In them days working for £36 a day would have actually worked, it was a saturday market i was standing and i used to really enjoy it, sales went up and down but i liked going so i actually stood Earlstown market every saturday for about 2 years. I used to really enjoy playing shop and buying and selling things , the buying and selling trade is still of an interest to me these days but the difference between trade and services is very clear. Trading and selling anything at all these days is very hard work. My services job at the time was a winner in the very early days.
This advice i took at the time has just been compared by me to my very early days but this advice i took all them years ago can be compared to absolutley anyones business in the whole world and i use this all the time -
- How much money did you make today or this week?
- What were the costs overheads ?
- How much were you left with at the end ?
You can make this calculation for the day, the week, or even the month depending on the business.
Then work out how much per week or per day it actually is (no cheating).Then the real part is the answer, whats the answer and is it what you are looking for ? Is it something that can continue without you 'going bust' ? Can it keep you and your living expenses going ? With a view to grow? Does it fail at the first calculation?.
You can in some cases actually work out the absolute maximum profit of some businesses. Like mine now at Restore Cleaning i can work out an absolute maximum top dollar day on the carpet cleaning van. It would probably never even hapen but the day rate of a carpet cleaning van can be worked out.
The funniest one is a business like a gym. You know the ones with 'memberships'. This would never ever happen but just imagine if every single member of a gym like the large chain gyms turned up all on the same day. Oh my lord , that really would be a shocker.
So there it is , as my blog is going to go on for ages if i dont shut up. But to determine what you are actually even going to set out to do in the first place this simple little bit of advice i got at a young age has helped me through my business life. I am forever number crunchng , always adding up and subtracting always monitorig things, i know the sums to my business, i know i am growing and why, i try to know what works and what doesnt. Do you ??
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