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If anyone is thinking of starting a business, they should be prepared to deal with all the obstacles that come their way. It is rarely ever a smooth ride. You have to be the type of person that will persevere and push through all of those challenges.

I remember when we first started and it was a fragile business -- like all startups probably are -- we were always worried about whether we had enough money to pay bills and whether we were doing the job right. You have to cope with all the ups and the downs.

Having a plan and knowing where you are going is key for any new business, and part of that is having adequate funding. Just how much you need is difficult to define because it depends on what type of business you are running. In our case we started out with very little capital but in the modern era, I wouldn’t recommend that.

Having a plan and knowing where you are going is key for any new business, and part of that is having adequate funding. Just how much you need is difficult to define because it depends on what type of business you are running. In our case we sta
rted out with very little capital but in the modern era, I wouldn’t recommend that.

It is not possible to do everything yourself in a successful business -- you need to delegate. Look around and think, "Who can do this better than I can? Who has the right skills?" Appoint good people -- then trust and support them.

There are many different types of people in business with different educational backgrounds, so don’t feel excluded. Some successful people are quiet, some are loud, some are good salespeople or good at finance. All can make it if they have a good team to help carry forward their plan.

It is easy to think core values are something you only worry about when the business is already successful. But in fact the reverse is true: Core values are what make you successful in the first place.

Retain ownership of your business if you can. Don’t give it away or sell too early. So many entrepreneurs today say, "I’m going to run it for five years then sell it." But I don’t think that’s what true entrepreneurs do. Instead, that’s being a speculator.

I almost sold once in the early part of the company’s history. I had an offer on the table but had a change of heart and walked away, and it was the smartest thing I ever did.


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