What can you do when you are a broke entrepreneur?
Daymond John is an entrepreneur, clothing mogul and star of TV show Shark Tank. But did you know that he was BROKE when he started his clothing brand? I love Marketing (www.ilovemarketing.com) is one of my favorite podcasts to listen to when I’m running or have windshield time and last week the hosts were interviewing Daymond John.
John founded the brand FuBu. He was talking about his new book “The Power of Broke”. where he highlights stories from many well know entrepreneurs to show us that the power of broke can be our greatest competitive advantage. check it out here.
Did you know he was BROKE when he started?
Daymond John, knew about 50 people in Queens, who believed in him and his product. He sold his shirts to those guys, the ones he grew up with, who he hung out with, who knew him as a friend. He literally had $40 in his pocket and a few t-shirts to sell to those who knew him. If they didn’t buy, then why would he think he would be able to sell it outside his neighborhood?
What I took away from that podcast was not that he began his business when he was broke but that he marketed his product to 50 of his buddies in Queens. He started in his backyard, he began with getting those closest to him on board to “buy in” to his product. Over time and with lots of bumps along the way he turned that local effort into a global brand.
In his books he lists several others who are now uber successful, who began with the same humble beginnings. Mark Zuckerberg started on his college campus of Harvard. Can you think of entrepreneurs, whom you admire, who were “given” the keys to success and all they had to do was turn them? Probably not successful ones whom you admire.
We take our lumps, we crawl when we actually want to run, we cry when the world thinks we should be moving on or moving up. In this society where it’s instant gratification, we have a hard time waiting, for the phone to ring, for someone to take us seriously, for the business to take off.
It takes your blood, sweat and tears to create any successful business, never doubt your success, for that matter, don’t doubt your failure, consider it “data gathering”, what didn’t work, but what can you learn from that experience to take into the next adventure.
It also takes having a community to support your efforts, people with whom you invest and are invested with you. Daymond couldn’t have started his business if he didn’t have those 50 friends in his home town who believed in him and his product. He would never have gotten his brand off the ground.
Building a community, or as some people call it your “tribe” should be a priority in your business. You need a group of people who will be able to give you ideas when you are out, who will cheer you on when you have a success and will help you grow from one of your mistakes.
The IGS community can grow into that tribe for you, we can be a group of people who work alongside one another and help make each other’s businesses more successful and creative.
Who is in your “tribe”? Who can you ask to help collaborate in your business?