“Through every generation of the human race there has been a constant war, a war with fear. Those who have the courage to conquer it are made free and those who are conquered by it are made to suffer until they have the courage to defeat it, or death takes them.” – Alexander the Great
If you’ve never done anything entrepreneurial, you may feel understandably intimidated by the process. You don’t know what you’re doing. You don’t know what will work. You don’t know where to start.
The key is to simply start somewhere. Do something. Don’t let fear or any lack of knowledge or skill hold you back. Just do something and see what happens.
Some of your experiments will fail. When that happens, since you’re experimenting on the side – in my last post I stressed that as you stretch your entrepreneurial muscles, you’re not going to do anything that jeopardizes your finances or your family – and you don’t have to worry that you won’t pay your bills.
By experimenting with entrepreneurialism you’ll walk away with more knowledge, skill, experience, and wisdom that you can apply to your next venture. And when something does succeed, you’ll build it as long as it makes sense. It may even be profitable enough to allow you to quit your job over time. If it doesn’t, you’ll still have more income that you can save and eventually invest.
Consider the case of Kyle Moffat, born and raised in Alaska. He’s 30 years old and works full time as an oil field production operator at an oil facility that puts oil down the Trans-Alaska pipeline. He makes great money and only works five months out of the year, working two weeks on and two weeks off. But no matter how much money he makes at his job and no matter how flexible his schedule, he knows he’ll never be truly free working for someone else.
In 2012 he started on an online blog called The Alaska Life. As an avid outdoorsman and adventurer, he constantly had people asking him what gear to use. So he started the blog as a way to answer people’s questions in one place. He had no business plan for it; it was just a hobby. But he was pleasantly surprised when the blog took off and a loyal fan base developed. He started selling branded hats, hoodies, and t-shirts and made $20,000 to $30,000 in gross revenues, just playing around on the side. After a couple years he had over 250,000 Facebook fans.
He started looking for ways to monetize the business even further. After taking online courses on drop-shipping, he launched an Amazon drop-shipping business on October 1, 2014, starting with private-labeled GoPro selfie sticks and stainless steel water bottles. His first product order was for $6,000 and he was sweating bullets, wondering if he’d really be able to sell anything. Within eight weeks of launching he was selling $90,000 per month (sales spiked for the holidays). In 2015, his first full year in business, he made a total of $750,000 in revenues. He now routinely makes product orders of $100,000 or more.
Although the business makes between $6,000 and $12,000 per month in profits, Kyle hasn’t pocketed any money yet. He’s rolling all his profits back into the business to keep the growth going. The business has funded itself. He expects to replace his job income soon.
Kyle told us, “Everyone I work with makes awesome money for as much time as we work. People here are fat, dumb, and happy. They pour money into their 401(k)s. But there’s no real long-term wealth in doing this. I tell people they have to shift their minds. You have to do your own thing because you’ll never get ahead if you’re just working hourly, even if you’re making good money.”
I continue to explore entrepreneurialism in my next post. Tell me – what ideas do you yourself have for becoming more entrepreneurial? Are you close to realizing them? Thank you for sharing.
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