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Steve
10-07-2008, 04:14 PM
The other night there was a show on CNBC I think it was called The Entrepreneurs and it was hosted by Donny Deutsche. It was really very interesting.

http://www.gopherforum.com/uploaded-files/images/cnbc_entrepreneurs.jpg

They focused on a bunch of businesses and talked about how they got their start.

One of the companies that was spotlighted was this company called Feed Granola. http://www.feedgranola.com

http://www.feedgranola.com/img/mast_home.jpg

What a great story. Two guys that were models by day, would cook up this granola feed in their apartment kitchen and sell it through local stores. Then they scaled it up and got distributed to more and more stores.

I love it because I love seeing people be able to start such business from scratch with very little money down.

Did you see this show? What did you think of it?

SC93
10-21-2008, 12:50 AM
Donny also has a nightly show called 'The Big Idea' that is really good. I try to watch it all the time. Another good show on tv and radio is Dave Ramsey. I was using my own plan just like Dave's long before Dave got a radio show. His big thing is about being debt free...it works...I've always been debt free. I've never even applied for a credit card. I think it would suck to work all week and have to give that money to someone else...I've never had to do that. All my money goes straight in my pocket. It's NOT impossible...go to daveramsey.com follow the plan and you will be debt free within a few short years. It really is easy if you just try a little.

Steve
10-21-2008, 07:50 AM
Have any of the topics you have seen on Donny's show helped you? If so can you tell us which stood out?

Also, by watching that show, did it give you ideas on other businesses you would like to start in the future?

StartALawnCareBusiness
10-21-2008, 02:05 PM
I love watching "The Big Idea."

Last week there was a guy on who is developing a mapping system for college campuses.

It's a great idea but the guy just seems to be running his business all wrong. He is at risk of losing his home and bankrupting his family. It's good to focus on a goal and a dream but not at the risk of destroying all that's around him.

One of the many things I like about the lawn care business is the winter season. It's gives time to reflect on the year and plan for next season. Even if you're busy with snow plowing or still mowing like our friends in Fla., the colder months let us take off the blinders, relax, and take stock in the world around us and make sure we are focusing on the truly important things in life.

Keith

Steve
10-21-2008, 04:46 PM
It is fascinating to see how different people go about business.

The one thing about the show that kind of bothers me is the lack of structure. It seems like Donny hasn't hit his pace yet with the show and is still trying to figure out what to do with it.

I was watching it the other night and he had a couple on that had a son who wanted to be a golf pro. The couple claimed to be running three businesses and were looking into starting a 4th, which would be a golf attire business.

It didn't seem like there was much advice to be offered as they were having financial difficulty. I think the first thing I would say is to focus on the business that was the most profitable with the best future potential and not get spread so thinly.

But ultimately I am glad the show is on the air. With all these other channels available, nothing else is really offered in this realm. I don't know why either.

StartALawnCareBusiness
10-21-2008, 11:22 PM
Steve, I saw that episode too. Jim Cramer was guest host.

As I watched their ideas about a clothing line it struck me what a huge undertaking it would be to begin a golf clothing line.

Does it amaze you sometimes the enormity that many entrepreneurs attempt to achieve vs. the small volume that it truly takes to pay for the necessities in life?

Here's an example of what I mean. For some reason hot dogs have become trendy in my home town. I'm not sure if this is a local trend or a nationwide reawakening of hotdogs. :rolleyes:

Anyway, there are two new businesses that I have been watching. One location is a teeny tiny order window close to some of the downtown tourist attractions. Their entire shop can't be more than 8' x 8'. It's simply a take out window. They are already open and doing (from what I can tell) great business selling dog after dog all day long.

A second shop has been working on their store front for well over a month. They have sunk a ton of money into their business and they still aren't open.

The second shop might eventually be way more profitable than the first but the expenditure and risk is already much greater.

Quite often I get email (as I'm sure you do) from new business owners who think they need $30k+ in lawn care equipment (and loans) before they even begin advertising their business.

I think most of the regulars on this board would agree that it's best to start small, grow moderately, and control expenses at ever step.

What do you think?

Steve
10-21-2008, 11:57 PM
Does it amaze you sometimes the enormity that many entrepreneurs attempt to achieve vs. the small volume that it truly takes to pay for the necessities in life?

Here's an example of what I mean. For some reason hot dogs have become trendy in my home town. I'm not sure if this is a local trend or a nationwide reawakening of hotdogs.

Anyway, there are two new businesses that I have been watching. One location is a teeny tiny order window close to some of the downtown tourist attractions. Their entire shop can't be more than 8' x 8'. It's simply a take out window. They are already open and doing (from what I can tell) great business selling dog after dog all day long.

A second shop has been working on their store front for well over a month. They have sunk a ton of money into their business and they still aren't open.

The second shop might eventually be way more profitable than the first but the expenditure and risk is already much greater.

Quite often I get email (as I'm sure you do) from new business owners who think they need $30k+ in lawn care equipment (and loans) before they even begin advertising their business.

I think most of the regulars on this board would agree that it's best to start small, grow moderately, and control expenses at ever step.

What do you think?

I am really glad you brought all this up.

First off with the show. Running 4 businesses is about 3 businesses too many. I applaud them for dreaming and experimenting but when they say they are having financial problems and may lose their house, well it seems to me either their expenses are too high or they are not focused enough on what is making money.

You need to find one thing at first that will make you money, then you can expand and grow and experiment with other things. It's fascinating to me when I read success stories and so often you will find those who stuck to making whatever their main business was, better, tended to find great success.

On the flip side, I do love to see people experiment because you never know when you will hit on something better.

As far as the hotdog stores, it reminds me of Kinko's. Their first store was 10ft x 10ft. So small that the copier had to be rolled out front of the store during the day to be used.

If you are looking to start any business, start with a small experiment. I love the concept of the small hotdog business. It's classic! Start small. Keep your overhead small and you give yourself a lot better chance at success because you will most likely be in business longer. If I want a hotdog and I am at a tourist attraction, I don't need to eat indoors. I will eat outside and take in all the sites.

What advice do you think you would have had for that family on Donny's show?