With more than twenty-three years of corporate experience, Brian Creager brings a completely different skill set to entrepreneurship. During his tenure in the corporate world, he built two seven-figure subsidiaries and decided he didn’t want to do that for anyone else again. Next time it would be for him. Brian chose to actively plan his exit over a two-year period and shares his experience.
After meeting Chris Ducker at a mastermind, Brian started thinking, “What is it I really know, and what does that mean to other folks?” Brian did very calculated things in starting his business, and took what was an asset to himself and used it as a leverage point before starting to look for opportunities. The best opportunity was pursued, which wasn’t following a passion or a gimmicky hook. If you have a fulltime job and a skillset in that job, it can be leveraged to start a business, e.g, social media companies.
The Pursuit of Opportunity
It is popular to say, “Just pick something and go straight into it.” While this can be a good mantra to live by, if you are delaying action and decision making, it is best to try different things. Once you find something that has traction, put effort, money, and willpower behind it and scale it.
Think about what you are doing strategically and not tactically. Remember, Amazon is a channel within a business. If you find something you are successful with, then think about it strategically and not just as one product or one brand.
Investing and Building Teams
Brian found his team through networking and word of mouth. It’s not so much a skillset match but rather about people with the right personality. Skills can be learned, but personalities can’t, so it’s important to be careful when selecting people.
The money is not yours; it’s the company’s. It’s a simple mindset. Figure out how much you need to live on per month and take the amount as an owner’s draw. The remainder of the money is to be invested in the company for growth. Invest your time and effort into continuing to grow the business. Hiring people is an economic calculation with the remaining money. If you can get someone else to do the work and pay them less than you would pay yourself to do the work, it makes sense to hire them.
Another good technique is to tie an employee’s compensation to a variable such as sales or profit. Don’t be afraid to invest in people and teach them, pay for them to go to courses, and develop themselves personally. The dedication you can get from staff when they see you are investing in them and their long-term growth and security can be amazing.
Leaving the Corporate World
Having a job is the ultimate in only having a single stream of income. If you build your own company that has multiple streams, you will have a much better mind set.
If you want to make a move, make sure you’re not running away from something. Make sure you’re running towards something. There are two ways to leave to the corporate world. One is to bank cash to give you a long enough runway to cover your expenses while you grow your business. The second way is to reduce your expenses down to the level of cash you already have in your bank.
Plan what you want to do and get yourself good accounting software! Know where you personally are in the business, what your cash is coming in, and how much extra you have to continue to invest and grow.
Mistakes Entrepreneurs Make and Solutions
The most important thing you can do when you are trying to reallocate time is to cut out the ‘fluff’ that sucks up time such as television and social media. Spend the conscious time with your family and focus on your objective, which is something you can run towards.
A big challenge solopreneurs have is indecision. A lot of people give up too soon. The more personal confidence you can have in what you are doing, the more successful you are going to be.
As the business owner, you are the most expensive employee in your company. Look at business decisions from a financial standpoint and an emotional standpoint. It is important to carve out specific, uninterrupted time to systematize your business and block out time in order to stick to a schedule. Additionally, having individuals in your life who can give you a reality check and help you see another way to do things is extremely powerful in a personal and professional way.
Brian’s One-One-One Strategy
Brian will have one million dollars in revenue with a minimum of 100 thousand dollars in revenue per month and works no more than 100 hours per month.
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Links to Resources Mentioned