Business as usual? I don’t think so. Just in the past decade the small business owner has gone on an economic roller coaster ride of a lifetime. Not to fear, most of us are very resilient. We may have had to change hats, hang-up old dreams and dream anew, but the soul of an entrepreneur is to learn, move forward and learn some more. We have a drive within us that pushes us through the tough times and sparks our creative juices. With so many problems in the world to fix, coming up with solutions is part of the business package we – as a whole, tackle daily. A little recession or a slow economy isn’t going to stop the heart beat of an entrepreneur.
When the US real estate bubble burst in 2007-2008 and no one was getting their home staging Columbia MD, it was akin to an economic nuclear bomb that set off a ripple effect leaving upheaval that touched commerce around the world. There is no denying that life in business for yourself has unexpected twists and turns you may never see coming. The rules are likely to change overnight with new pitfalls and advantages continually coming at us. Take one of the latest issues; identity theft. More and more we are put in the path of the unseen villain ready and willing to take our hard earned cash. Now when many of us are recovering our financial footing, we have to keep a keen eye out for the black hats who want to take it from us.
My husband and I have been entrepreneurs for over 17 years and pride ourselves in our successes. We’ve had several businesses that have served others well and afforded us a comfortable lifestyle. As sole proprietors, back in the mid 2000s, we partnered with the bank on many of our real estate deals. We had a platinum credit rating that was over 30 years in the making and guarded with our lives. As self employed entrepreneurs, we knew the importance of an impeccable credit rating. We were heavily invested in fix and flips and transitional housing for short term renters. We had our ducks in a row, so to speak, with a mentor who had 25 years experience in real estate guiding us on important decisions. To make a long story short, when the banks stopped lending to small businesses and we couldn’t grow, our company stagnated and eventually stood dead still. The cost of putting money out with not enough coming back in was a blow that would have put most sole proprietors on their knees. However as entrepreneurs, we saw it differently.
We took a hit, there’s no doubt, but it forced us to look at different options. That’s what successful, self-made entrepreneurial types do. We began searching on-line ventures. As older adults, we wanted to enter a field that was not discriminate because of age. Over the years we had learned enough not to get caught up in what is popularly known as the shiny object syndrome and we found several legitimate opportunities. In our opinion a good business venture has to be profitable and based in service. It has to have a solid foundation with reputable people at the cornerstones of longevity, honesty, creativeness and service.
Entrepreneurs are the backbone of our country. There are an estimated 27 million entrepreneurs in the United States alone. That’s 14% of all working age Americans who are starting or running their own business. We are innovators, creators, doers. We have also learned that to depend on others for your long-term livelihood is taking a bigger risk than establishing our own business. When it come to relying on someone else for the security of home and family our philosophy is; it’s better to make it happen for ourselves.
No one is touting the idea that any of this is easy. Just get an idea and run with it – no there is a lot of work, patience and perseverance necessary to become a success. Choose the right niché, get good legal counsel, set reasonable expectations, serve others and believe. Wake up every morning willing to do what it takes to see your dream become a reality.