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Old January 12, 2012, 01:09 AM
Dien Rice Dien Rice is offline
Onwards and upwards!
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,841
Default Risk taking, and how your potential resources are unlimited...

Originally Posted by Duane Adolph View Post
Hey Sowpubbers,

Are YOU an "Entrepreneur"?

I just read this short article by a Harvard Business School professor Howard Stevenson.

I thought he succinctly captured "A" definition of an Entrepreneur in under 25 words.

I won't spoil it by posting it here but check out the article (it's a quick read).
Hi Duane,

Thanks - interesting definition and article!

First... The article mentions the topic of "risk." If you look at a lot of books, they talk about "entrepreneurs" as people taking on a "risk"...


Most successful entrepreneurs figure out how to reduce their risk to as low as possible.

To give some examples...

When Richard Branson started Virgin Airlines, people said he was taking on a huge risk.

While he was taking on a risk - people didn't know he had a deal in place to reduce his risk.

I think his biggest expense was the actual Boeing airplane. In fact, he had a deal with Boeing that, if the venture didn't work, Boeing would buy back their airplane at the same price Richard Branson paid for it.

So - the biggest expense he had - he had reduced the risk by doing this deal with Boeing (as one of the conditions of the sale). He still would have had the cost of marketing, paying employees, etc. However, he had virtually eliminated the risk of the cost of buying the airplane itself.

Others reduce their risk with a "Plan B" (and even a "Plan C" and "Plan D").

Kirk Kerkorian bought surplus military airplanes (after WWII) from Hawaii, flew them himself to the US mainland (he was a pilot), and sold them for a profit.

However, he also had a "Plan B" - which was, while he was waiting for a buyer for any of his planes, he also hired the planes out for charter flights. So, he had at least a couple of different ways to profit from his airplanes.

Another part which is good in the article is that, it is true that you are not limited to your own resources.

In fact, the resources at your disposal are (potentially) unlimited!

It's called doing a deal. If someone else has a resource you want - you can try to do a deal to use that resource.

Let's say you need a warehouse - but you can't afford to buy one.

So you may be able to do a deal to get a warehouse.

You might find a business which owns a warehouse - but is only using part of the warehouse, with the other part of it empty - who may be willing to do a "creative" deal. (After all, if part of it is empty, they having nothing to "lose" as they are making no profit from the empty part of their warehouse, anyway.) Such a business may be more willing to do a deal with you.

For example, if you have the money, you could rent the empty space. Another alternative is, go into partnership in your business with them, and have their contribution of the use of their warehouse be part of the partnership deal. Or, instead of a partnership, have them be an "investor" in your company - and their investment, rather it being in cash, is through the use of their warehouse. Or, you could barter for the unused part of the warehouse - that is, give them free services or products, in return for the free use of the empty part of the warehouse. There are many different ways to structure such deals - depending on what you want, and also what they want.

I know a guy who got free use of a small warehouse. It's a kind of complex story, but the warehouse was sitting there empty and run down. The owner owns so many properties, he doesn't really care about some of his empty properties. The guy I know keeps the warehouse clean and maintains it - and in return, he has the owner's approval to use it - for free. (The owner will still make money from the increasing value of the warehouse, and the real estate it sits on, over time. That this guy keeps it maintained and clean actually helps the warehouse to maintain its value - so it's win/win for both of them.)

The fundamental idea is, you actually have potentially no limit on the resources that are available to you (as long as those resources exist on planet Earth). However, you have to have the creativity to propose a "win/win" deal with one of those people who controls the resource you want or need.

Anyway, this is "real" stuff - not just theory!

Best wishes!

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