What you don’t know about business.

a woman is thinking surrounded by question marks

I’ll bet you didn’t know this one thing about starting a boating company in Maui. What don’t you know about your business that is lurking in the future?

NUMMI changed the way management is done in the US by knowing something others didn’t. You can read about it here. They took something people didn’t know about culture and turned it into an amazing success. You can do the same thing. Learning what you don’t know is an incredible way to build a standout business. The other side of the coin is, what you don’t know can kill your business.

What don’t you know about your idea?

Do you know that you can’t serve beer and pretzels together in North Dakota? This is a big deal if you think you’ll make your fortune selling beer to oil rig workers. Did you know bloggers have to pay a $300 license fee in Philidelphia? Nav.com lists 9 weird facts about entrepreneurship you probably weren’t aware of. These are the type of issues that, if overlooked can cost you a fortune in money but more importantly, time. Don’t jump into your idea without learning what you don’t already know.

What I didn’t know about my businesses.

I have started more businesses than I can count. Today I officially have two successful companies. One is in the power grid/communications industry and one is this business, with which you are interacting now. Both are “successful” in that they produce full-time income for me and around 20, full-time team members, plus a few contractors. What I didn’t know was how long it would take for them both to become “successful.” In the video below I also line out what I didn’t know about my competition and team members. Had I known how long it can take for these to work out I would’ve given my other endeavors more time before I killed them.

Dig in to learn what you don’t know first.

Ask questions first. Then ask questions about your questions. Then, chase out the answers to your questions so you can find more questions to ask. I promise there is something out there waiting to pounce. If you don’t uncover something surprising or difficult about your business idea, you haven’t asked enough questions. Do you know the insurance mandates? Are import/export laws an issue? Does your location match your customers traffic patterns? You need to dig deep into your idea to uncover the monster. Don’t use questions to hide behind, but make sure you are prepared to take on the issue once it pops up.

I learned this crazy rule about starting a boating company in Maui.

Don’t sink your time and money into an idea that will never work. Also don’t start something without know what it takes to make it work. Learn what you don’t know to find success that others haven’t found.

Comment (95)

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