Between 1995 and 2000 (approximately), the internet experienced what is known as the dot-com bubble. People were starting online business left and right that experienced extremely rapid growth. If you added an “e-” prefix to the front of your name or a “.com” to the end, investors were more than ready to throw a ton of money at you, even if you never made a profit. Millionaires were made almost overnight. Never before (or since) was it as easy to make a ton of cash using the internet.
Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it), this bubble burst for a number of reasons at the beginning of the year 2000 and a lot of companies ended up filing bankruptcy.
In my opinion, this is one of the things that have contributed to a vicious rumor that's spreading almost like wildfire (at least, that's the way it seems sometimes). So many people think that you can come online and make a ton of money quickly. People seem to think that having a website might be the thing they've been waiting for that will propel their businesses to the next level automatically. Yes, it does happen that way sometimes, but is it likely? Nope!
A Knack for Business
If you've been following what I've been doing recently, you probably know that I've been doing a lot of reading, and listening to audiobooks. Well, at the moment I'm listening to an audiobook to “The Knack: How Street-Smart Entrepreneurs Learn to Handle Whatever Comes Up“, written by Norm Brodsky and Bo Burlingham. So far, it's been a great book and has been giving me a lot to think about when it comes to my business. It's definitely one I would highly recommend!
The more I read, the more it reinforces the idea that in order for my online business to succeed, I need to treat it like a REAL business, and not just a website. Taking that into consideration, I also need to face the following unfortunate (or fortunate, depending on how you look at it) that:
- Approximately 40% of American businesses fail within the first year.
- Approximately 80% of all American businesses fail within the first five years.
These figures seem to vary slightly depending on which book you read, but the general idea holds true. MOST businesses fail.
One of the things “The Knack” brought out was that one of the main reasons why so many businesses fail is not because they don't have the potential to be a great business, but because the business owner doesn't have the determination to see it through the tough times that most businesses go through, especially in the startup stage.
I don't want to make it seem like this is THE main reason, or a major focus of the book, because it isn't. However, it's one of the things that really stood out to me because I believe that it plays a major role.
As a High School science and Math teacher, I must be honest with you and let you know that I'm growing more and more concerned about the future of this nation. I'm not American, but I have grown to love a lot of what this country has to offer. That being said, I'm seeing more and more that students have been conditioned to give up too soon.
If I had a penny for every time a student jumped to the conclusion that they don't know how to do something, but ended up showing me that they could definitely do it (with a little prodding from the teacher), I could probably buy myself a ticket to a nice Caribbean getaway (and I'm way overdue for that now).
The thing is, it's not only our students, it's even us adults. And by us, I'm even including myself. I've given up on doing a number of things in the past because they were too hard. This has to change!
Are you ready to work on your business for 5 years?
I'm starting to look at my Biology website as my main business, although I haven't started monetizing it as yet. However, there are A LOT of stuff going on behind the scenes that are just really exciting and I can't wait to share it with you guys, so that you can implement the same things to grow your business.
Since I'm looking at my online stuff as a real business, I've had to ask myself a few questions:
- Do I really Love what I'm doing?
- Am I ready to give it my all for the next five years?
- Am I willing to stare disappointment and challenges right in the face and still work my butt off to make it grow?
Answering those questions were easy? YES, I love it, YES, I'm ready to give it my all for five years, and YES, I'm willing to stare disappointment and challenges right in the face. I'm ready to be in this thing for the long haul. I don't care how huge the mountains are that stand before me. I believe I can do it.
But the purpose of this post is not for me to answer the question. I already know my answers. It's for you. So here goes:
- Do YOU really Love what YOU'RE doing?
- Are YOU ready to give it YOUR all for the next five years?
- Are YOU willing to stare disappointment and challenges right in the face and still work YOUR butt off to make it grow?
Here's the thing. I know that you can do it. Do You?
I'm asking these questions now because I'm about to embark on a journey, as you may already know if you are a reader of my blog. As I take this journey, I will be sharing what I'm doing with you – what I've learned, the challenges I'm facing, what works and what doesn't, etc. In order for you to take your business to the next level with me, you will need to make decisions. The sooner you make them the better.
Everything else is just details. The details will come, but the commitment needs to be made. Are you ready to take action? Are ya?
Let me know in the comments below. If you are reading this via email, click here to leave a comment.