First Thing You Need to Understand When You Want to Open ANY Business…

I was talking to a colleague the other day who happened to open up a restaurant when he reminded me of the most important thing to understand and know before you start ANY business.  It wasn’t the point of the conversation, but it came out pretty quickly.  I know it will sound trivial and rudimentary, but it is more important than anything else in 98% of the cases.  When you are about to open any business you have to remember that you are actually running a business.

Law Firm to Restaurant to Running a Website

For the most part, it doesn’t matter what type of business you are starting…there is still the basic structure of income vs. expenses.  Maximizing one while keeping the other one low is the only strategy for long term success.  Granted sometimes you have to flip it a bit (i.e. leverage) for future growth, but if you don’t remember that first rule your business will fail over the long term (well, sans some creative accounting).  This is true whether you are running a law firm, restaurant or a website.  

Think about all those episodes of bar rescue, kitchen nightmares, etc., most of them have one thing in common they forget this “rudimentary” concept.

Going back to my colleague, will his restaurant make it? Who knows but it is certainly inspiring to listen to him talk about controlling food costs, knowing how much they have to turn over in a night to be profitable, etc.

6 Responses to First Thing You Need to Understand When You Want to Open ANY Business…

  1. Great advice! Running a business is very different from starting or buying one. The day to day management requires discipline, vision and paying attention to details. The key with a restaurant is consistency and yu can still lose customers because things beyond your control. Things like large employers leaving the area. I had to constantly promote the business.

    • I always google the new and old names of the bar to find them on yelp and see if it is still even around or if it is thriving

  2. Oh so true. It happens with photographers, too. I see so many (mostly female) photographers who say “oh but I love doing it” and so don’t treat their photography businesses like, well, businesses. Then, 2 years into it, they’re working a bajillion hours and yet can’t afford equipment, can’t afford to take time off, can’t afford to hire help, and don’t understand how they got there.

    It’s sad. Business is business. If you’re not prepared to run a business, then don’t start one.

    • My facebook feed is FULL of “friends” who thought b/c they bought a DSLR camera they have a photography business LOL so ridiculous

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