If you could go back to when you were 25, what are things you would have told your business self?
This topic started an intriguing dialogue among my entrepreneur and CEO colleagues. When I speak to colleges or university students majoring in business, entrepreneurship or the arts, this is a talk I find helpful.
I will also include an emphasis about “The Power of Yes in Business and How to Avoid No’s.”
Speaking with very engaged millenials and their zest and eagerness to “dive in” utilizing the comfort of growing up with the Internet in their pocket, is not something past generations had. “When the experienced business person of 20+ years learns how to combine their experience with a younger generation’s perspective, what you have is a powerhouse combination at your fingertips!”
Here are some top lessons I share from my talk What Would You Tell Your 25 Year Old Business Self?”
Rg Lutz says:
- Never underestimate any contact you have or just recently gained. (Just putting out a request to old contacts for help, can yield results). Immediately add your contacts into your list (and write down everything you can about that person to remember them and their potential leads or source of help).
- If you want an advanced degree, get a law degree – skip the MBA. Much of the MBA is learned in practical business. Small part of it, you learn from books. The most important thing to remember in business school “competitive advantage is only temporary.” A law degree gives you an advantage in contracts, negotiations, and analyzing. Useful for critical thinking and rationalizing.
- The most important aspect of business: Friendly, honest customer service. Clients will take a B quality company with A level customer service over an A quality company with B level customer service. Clients will give the benefit of the doubt to a company that is trying as long as customer service is up to par or better.
William Gearhart says:
I would advise myself to follow the path of the things I enjoyed the most to do, not the things that provided the most immediate rewards.
I would save $5000 a year for 10 years and invest that money in Warren Buffet invested stocks.
Philip Falzarano says:
- Whatever market you intend to get involved in, know the numbers and trends of that market. Understand the demographics and any regulations involved within that sector of the market you are going after. Knowing the numbers and the trend will put most ahead of anyone else.
- Have a plan, anyone who: PLANS THEIR WORK AND WORKS THEIR PLAN will exceed. You need a business plan within the plan you must ID the:
- Market sector you want
- Relationship of the owner(s)
- A business entity
- Enough capital ( this will be based on the study of the market sector there are going after, knowing the numbers and trends)
- Understand how to protect your intellectual property
Lisa Caprelli says:
Pick the right people on your team and get the wrong people “off your bus.” Going understaffed is better than having someone who is not a value added player.
- Take the time to vet your business partnerships. Just because you are friends with someone, doesn’t mean you should go into business with them or that you will like their business traits. Work together and see how one another performs to see firsthand someone’s business skills at play. Don’t sign up partnership agreements until you do this. Often times I backed out of business “partnerships” because it simply was not a match.
- Be fair and communicate what your expectations are. Refer to an attorney or business advisor on important decisions. Read COMMON BUSINESS MISTAKESinterview by attorney, Phil Ehrlich.
The above are opinions and perspectives from a sample of 25 people interviewed.
Do share: What would YOU tell your 25 year old business self?
We hope to include your voice in The Business Experience Show blog.