By Chad Reinholz
In his book, The Making of the Atomic Bomb, Richard Rhodes explains in great detail how the contributions of scientists working to make the atomic bomb in World War II only happened because of the scientific discoveries of others much earlier in the 20th century - and even the 19th century. Like most scientific developments, it can take years of research to perfect a new way of doing something, and that research is conducted by numerous scientists working on what are sometimes disparate projects. It’s the source of the term “standing on the shoulders of giants.”
If you plan to start a new green industry business, you likewise need to talk to those that came before you. Networking with experienced green industry business owners can help you avoid the mistakes that they made early in their business ownership and be profitable faster.
Luckily for you, we just completed a report based on a survey of hundreds of green industry business owners, and one of the questions we asked was “What advice would you have for a new green industry business owner?” Here are five of our favorite responses:
1. Understand what your strengths are, look for people to help with your weak spots, have a vision for your company and set goals to that vision.
One of the most important things you can do initially in your business is analyze what your strengths and weaknesses are. If you are a great salesman, but are terrible at managing people, find someone to manage your business while you sell. If you are great at crunching numbers, but can’t relate to people, find someone who can.
Then, create a vision for your company. What do you want to do? Who is your audience? What differentiates you? Why should someone hire you?
Finally set some goals. We like to start with a big, hairy, audacious 10-year goal. Where do you want to be in 10 years? Then work backward to set three year and one year goals.
2. Give quality. Know your numbers and price accordingly. Don't be afraid to say "NO!" Follow up. Hold employees accountable.