OK, I admit it freely. I’m a typical enthusiastic entrepreneur. You know, the type that gets excited about every little shiny object that we see everywhere. I look for and see opportunities everywhere and I often go for it and either suffer another failure, achieve a little success or sometimes thankfully really feel like I found a home run.
I cannot help myself, but go looking for opportunities everywhere I go and I actually find them to be abundantly present all over. Not all opportunities are created equal though, and I have set up in my mind a few criteria that an opportunity must have for me to want to engage myself further, whether with investment, my time and effort etc. My criteria have been formed from the abundant experience of past ventures that I have endured, suffered through and enjoyed and predominantly my criteria are based on my personal tastes and preferences for how I like a business to be formed. I ask myself questions such as:
- “How many people does the business require on a daily basis to achieve the results?”
- “How much money does it take to get the initial results desired?”
- “What technical stumbling blocks do we as a business have to overcome to get there?”
- “What market are we serving and more importantly who are we serving and how do we bring value to our customer?”.
Following my experiences of the 2.5 years since 2008 in which year I was the wealthiest I have ever been, but also became the poorest I have ever been, basically loosing more than I owned big time (a story for some other time), one of my newest questions that I ask of every opportunity has become:
- ” How scalable is the business?”.
I write 2.5 years since 2008, since that’s the time it took me from going with a huge debt load to no debt at all (and I hadn’t been debt-free at that time since I was only about 14 years old). From really broke with huge debt back to comfortable levels of livelihood and no debt in just 2.5 years. Wow, that surprised me . What I learned from my struggle to get back on my feet, was that you can achieve incredibly big results incredibly swiftly. Bigger and quicker than I had ever thought possible and bigger and quicker than I expect most people think possible. That’s why I have added the question of scalability. I’m not yet where I want to be, but I’m at least enjoying the journey (something that only took me 38 years plus to learn – at the time of writing this, I’m 44 years old).
In truth, I’m in search for the ultimate lifestyle, and I know that my version of the ultimate lifestyle require some decent amount of money. Not because money makes you happier, but because of all the things you can do with money, yes, including the toys and the great travel experiences etc., but especially the sense of freedom having money can give you and also what you can do for others and the world around you. But besides looking for the ultimate lifestyle, I also find it stimulating and fascinating to engage myself in many varied things. I love the many faceted businesses that I have engaged myself in (although at times I also wished I never entered one or two) and I love that my day today is not necessarily the same as my day yesterday. I also often have enjoyed the fact that with multiple businesses and multiple different ventures I have invested in, that I also benefit from one business making me a nice return while another may see challenging times. Multiple streams of revenue and income help overcome tough times and times when a business need to grow before a positive return let alone a balance will materialize.
Recently, some people that I really trusted and held in high esteem really let me down and seriously disappointed me. But even worse than that, as a result of this let down, they also let down a third party that I had foreseen a great future for as part of a new venture. I was left in a position in which I had to turn down what I had more or less promised to this talented person and I knew this would be extremely upsetting for him, not least because of the enthusiasm and engagement he had already poured into the prospected venture. The experience, however, also induced a good influence on my thinking in that it stimulated even more so the need for me to find ways of how I could help others who are struggling or finding themselves in dire situations. I think this is a great thing. I used to always be all about me. “What’s in it for me?”, would be my modus of operandi. Don’t get me wrong, I still want to achieve all the riches and all the toys and fun (although that has become actually way less important these past 4 years) and I still hold some selfish thoughts in me, but I’m seeing more and more joy in helping others along the way.
So just a few weeks ago, I took the leap to enter into a new venture that I was introduced to. I wasn’t too sure about this one and I was very skeptical to say the least, because it entailed one of those situations in which it just sounded too good to be true. And we all know, that “If an opportunity sounds too good to be true then it usually is too good to be true”. But I trusted the person who introduced me and I decided to take the leap of faith and go for it. And so far it looks like a huge winner. The venture not least seems to fit my criteria extremely well and it requires only about 2 to 3 minutes from me a day and other than my initial purchase I don’t even have to sell anything or poor more money into it.
With my new mindset that enjoys a more altruistic outlook in mind of how I can help others and with such a great new venture that I already enjoy the fruits of, I have decided to give away the first US$ 2,500 that I make from this new venture away to charitable organizations. While that’s a lot of money, it really only is equivalent to 17 days of my revenue share from the new venture. So not only am I enjoying a new venture that seems like a home run, but I’m also enjoying giving away a size-able amount of money to a worthy cause.
My choice of charitable organization for this round of donation is Team Hole In The Wall.
Founded by Paul Newman in 1988, The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp is dedicated to providing a “different kind of healing” to seriously ill children and their families throughout the Northeast, free of charge. It’s a community that celebrates the fun, friendship and spirit of childhood where every kid can “raise a little hell”.
The camp serves more than 20,000 children and families annually.
But listen. Even though US$ 2,500 is a good chunk of cash, it’s still but a drop in the ocean, so I like you to consider joining in and spare a little for a worthwhile cause. Help me raise the donations – every dollar helps and I know that a lot of children will be happy.
I think this is just the beginning of things. I like where this could be headed and I’m enjoying the journey.