Author: Jane Bradley


Growing up on a working cattle ranch in New Mexico taught me many life lessons. These lessons have proved invaluable to me in my life as a successful and serial entrepreneur.

When you think about it – ranchers and farmers are the working definitions of an entrepreneur. They are the ones that took the big gamble and risked everything to open up the West. Even in today’s world of high-speed internet and global marketing – ranchers and farmers are still the backbones of America.

At the turn of the century, my grandfather came to New Mexico – at that time it was not a state but a territory. He came alone with only his hopes, his dreams and the willingness to do the hard work to fulfill his dreams. His dreams were not only for himself but for the family he hoped to establish in the new world he was entering. He had courage, he had a vision and he had a plan.

This sounds a lot like a modern day entrepreneur – doesn’t it? We all have our dreams, we have courage, and we know what we want the outcome of our life’s work to be.

Here are 4 non-negotiable tips that will help you along your road to success as an entrepreneur. Your vision and your courage to face challenges are not listed in these 4 tips. Rather – they are a given to the success of any venture.

TIP # 1.

You must have a TEAM. In today’s world of solopreneurs and entrepreneurs, the biggest challenges you will face are isolation and lack of accountability. This is also true for partnerships and in small business. Building a strong team and meeting with your team on a regular basis will assure you of accountable to your time, your budget and any needs for change in your original planning.

TIP # 2.

A well thought out business plan is essential to success. This does not need to be the arduous “book” that we normally think of when we discuss business plans.

Rather it can be broken down to the essentials:

  • What are you going to do? (Overview)
  • How are you going to do it? (Simple marketing plan)
  • How long will it take (Timeline)
  • $$$ – How much will start up cost be and a budget of income and expenses. (The success of any business is in the books)

S B A and your local S C O R E chapter can be of enormous help with assembling this information and assisting with good planning.

Remember: their services are free!

TIP # 3

Rule of thumb – most small and startup businesses will not be able to take personal income from their business for the first year (+/-). It will be necessary to return income to the business to assure stability and growth. Do you have adequate funds or a plan to meet this demand in your new enterprise?

TIP # 4

Focus – Focus – Focus.

Webster defines an entrepreneur as: “One who organizes, operates, and assumes the risks of a business venture.” We all face the risk of yielding to the desire to follow the “new shiny object” that comes into our line of vision. As we work on our venture, we must be diligent and guard against the desire to start something new before we have fully expanded and realized success in our current venture.

The biggest and best tip I offer you is: FOCUS.

  • FOCUS on your goals – are you meeting goals?
  • FOCUS on budget – are you meeting your budget needs or do you need a team meeting to rewrite your budget?
  • FOCUS on tasks at hand – learn to determine the difference between what is important to the advancement of your business and day to day issues that distract you from what is truly important.

If you want to discuss the life of a serial entrepreneur or need a word or encouragement, please feel free to email me.


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