Ideas Hold the Key to Your Business Future
I love the story of Jim Penman, founder and CEO of Jim’s Group.
A rejected Phd. student that decided to start a lawn care business with $24 capital in the middle of a recession, and a drought! I love the story so much because I had an insiders view. Jim and his young family were within my parents’ social circle. I was probably about 13 or 14 when I found myself at a Christmas social function at his home in suburban Melbourne. I also recall overhearing – I was an Olympic gold medallist eavesdropper back then – a number of people talk down his lawn mowing business which was then in its infancy. For such an educated man, it was clearly beneath him. “What a waste of talent.”
Well, 30 years later, and history will tell us that Jim and his business is not only a success, but one of the great stories of Australian free enterprise. It’s the biggest ‘real’ franchise system in Australia, and now has worldwide exposure. Incredible. All from a self described socially inept man who couldn’t sell a thing.
And it all started with an idea. An idea that is now worth millions of dollars, employs thousands of people, and is one of the best known and most trusted brands in Australia.
Given the challenges at the time of his start up – a lack of capital, a serious economic downturn, water restrictions and hence dying lawns – ideas and innovation became the mainstay of his survival. Not just a part of it, they were IT. He explains: “Twelve months earlier, in normal economic conditions, with good weather and no debt, I had gone into business and failed. Now, saddled with debt during an economic downturn, and with my core mowing work virtually wiped out by drought, I throve. To the new me, dry conditions were an opportunity.”
Inspiring stuff, but also instructional. Harsh times don’t have to be the end of times. We all have a creativity that if tapped correctly holds the key to each of us succeeding in business. Creativity, ideas, innovation, are often terms many business owners are afraid of. Why? Because it implies risk, and risk implies loss. In reality, a failure to bring forward ideas, and to innovate is itself the bigger risk.
Harsh times don’t have to be the end of times. We all have a creativity that if tapped correctly holds the key to each of us succeeding in business
The Whitestone philosophy is that small businesses revitalise themselves through new ideas and innovation. It’s something big business has known about for years. It’s also something that often has required big money. So for a small business with, for want of a better term, small money, how can something similar be achieved without busting the bank?
The Whitestone philosophy is also that ideas are free. No one has yet thought of a way to tax them, and there are no regulations governing the birth of ideas. Getting the idea from your brain to the balance sheet though is where the cash registers start ringing. But it doesn’t have to be that way with Whitestone.
Through our “Build Up Your Biz” program, we can help you get your ideas out of your head and into your business in a very affordable way. Because Build Up Your Biz is a program, and not an open-ended consulting engagement, we are focused on tangible outcomes within a strict timeframe, from day one. There are no attractive business plans that sit in their fancy binding on your desk gathering dust. While planning detail is certainly part of the program, they are not the outcome. We work with you to determine the outcomes you want, and what you want to pay.
This is no cookie-cutter approach to new ideas. The path of taking your idea to the bank is tailored to suit the business variables at play. Build Up Your Biz’s focus is Tangible outcomes, in a defined timeframe, at a reasonable cost. All key principles in delivering on our basic philosophy of ‘Ideas to Income’.
The first consult is free, so why not call us today to set up a time to meet? You can get us on (03) 9015 7622, or click here to email. You can even try skype to whitestone_enterprises. Just state the purpose of the contact in the contact box. If you want to learn more about Build Up Your Biz, click here.