Earlier this month I spoke with 2 real estate agents. They had two very different philosophies of doing business. This lead to two very different life styles but netted them the same income in the end. I found it very interesting as both of them were very happy with the outcome. It was due to their differing priorities and goals for their business.
The first markets her business through high profile advertising. Billboards, radio spots and high quality brochures to several neighborhoods is her norm. She employs a full time assistant and a buyers agent to follow up extra leads. A normal month would see 8 to 10 deals being done. She has office walls decorated with awards and is recognized like a minor celebrity in the neighborhoods she works.
The second markets only through word of mouth and social networking. Coffee and lunch meetings, personal cards and phone calls to past clients is his was of bringing in business. He employs a virtual assistant and handles all his clients personally. A normal month sees 2-3 deals being done. There are very few awards on his office wall.
The first works several more hours per week than the second and shows a much higher production level for it. In the end, after expenses, they net about the same income.
Who has the better business plan? Both and neither! These are two people that have very different motivations and have created businesses that fulfill them in different ways.
The first feels fulfilled by knowing that she is a top producer in her industry. She enjoys what she does very much and wants to be at the top of her field. She accomplishes it and feels happy.
The second values free time and the ability to control his schedule. Awards don't matter to him but free time does. He accomplishes that and is happy.
When you start a business, examine your motivation. What do you want as a person from your business? Is it about recognition? Is it about money? Is it about flexible time? Is it about contribution to society? There is no wrong answer. You need to know your motivation and be comfortable with it. Then you can build a business that provides that very thing to you.