Monday, October 03, 2005

Can You Make Yourself Wealthy Doing Something You Love?

Contributing writer Michelle Loyalka addresses the process of determining whether a hobby or personal passion can become a successful business. For those wanting to become the next Ty Warner, the first issue to address is whether the idea will appeal to enough people--and survive those wanting to compete after they see initial success. The next issue is whether your idea is different enough from what presently exists in the marketplace that the new entrepeneur is not at the mercy of generally merciless price competition. In some cases, this means that a little improvisation may be in order (remember that Levi Strauss did not make a fortune by mining gold in California; rather he supplied clothing needs of the miners). Next, determine whether you can handle the "drudgery" of business (inventory, correspondence, accounting, etc.) or are willing to pay to "outsource" business functions. A final key is patience; even well-thought out new businesses in this arena often take two years or more to become profitable.

Many good ideas here; probably the best are creativity (see the Levi Strauss example above) and patience. Having a spouse/companion who can work elsewhere at a stable salaried job while the business is getting off the ground is a real advantage also.


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