I received an email from the Small Business Expo this morning and the 12 Rules For Start-Ups by Mark Cuban, billionaire, tech wiz, owner of the Dallas Mavericks and resident shark on ABC's hit show "Shark Tank". It caught my interest. He is one of the most sought-after entrepreneurs in the world.
Many of the businesses in Gold Star Referral Clubs are start-ups. This is great advice.
Let's look at these basic start-up rules from the man himself, courtesy of Entrepreneur.com. Take a look! I have included my own side-notes...
Twelve Rules For Start-Ups
- Don't start a company unless it's an obsession, and something you love. (Because if you're not in love with it in the beginning, it will grow into the monster that rules your life.)
- If you have an exit strategy, it's not an obsession. (It's okay to plan an exit. It's just good business.)
- Hire people who you think will love working there. (And don't hire relatives, no matter how much they need the job.)
- Sales cure all. Know how your company will make money and how you will actually make sales. (Sales do cure all and start building a referral-based business the day you open the door.)
- Know your core competencies and focus on being great at them. (Then delegate the rest to competent people.)
- Don't lure employees with perks like espresso machines. The right employee should WANT to work their hardest for your company. (Offer value not gimmicks.)
- No offices. Communication is key. There is no privacy in a start-up. (Unless you're really loud on the phone and need sound-proofing. And by the way, the kitchen table may work just fine for awhile.)
- As far as technology, go with what you know. If you'll be more efficient on the slightly more expensive machine, go for it. (Don't use your new business as a license to spend money on new toys.)
- Keep the organization flat. This is a small company. Managers should report to the head of the company, not other managers. (It's okay for the CEO to answer the phone. I do.)
- Never buy swag. People aren't going to walk around wearing your logo for you. (I agree. Most of the promotional stuff you buy is ego driven anyway. Don't fool yourself into thinking that they will keep it. Just check out the trash bin by the exit of the trade show.)
- Never hire a PR firm. Establish lines of communication with media partners yourself. (And branding experts are more expensive than attorneys.)
- Make the job fun for employees. Throw parties for them, and reward their hard work. (Always have fun. Life is an adventure. Love it and live it!)