The Three C’s: Common Sense, Commitment and Cash

There are three C’s you must have, in my opinion, to start a business and take it from Kernal of Hope to Thriving Cash Register:

1. Courage.
2. Commitment.
3. Cash.

Without all three of these attributes, your Tiny Idea will never be the Next Big Thing. Running a small business is a lot like a marriage: it’s a constant never ending struggle and you have to be present in every moment. It’s also amazingly rewarding and some of the most fun you’ll ever have.

Let’s take the first “C”: Courage. We all know what Courage is, and a small business owner or home-based business owner needs Courage as much as a knight of old needed courage to hop on his trusty stead and ride out to fight the dragon. Because fighting dragons is what you’re doing all day every day when you’re running a business. Whether that dragon is rising insurance rates, plummeting sales, employee issues, or even too much cash (and, yes, believe it or not, that can be a problem!), a small business/home-based business owner spends most of her day slaying dragons. And that, my friend, takes courage. The courage to get up every morning, confront problems head on, make a decision, implement the decision, and live to fight another day. And, the NEXT day…and the next one, and the next one, and…you get the picture.

The second “C” is commitment. I wasn’t kidding when I said owning a small business is like a marriage. It’s not just like a marriage, it is a marriage. A marriage between you and your business. You each agree to take care of the other in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health, in exploding growth, and imploding market share. Once you decide to start a business, you have to be committed to make that business survive and thrive. There are no free lunches or days off. Even if you go on vacation, you’re going to be checking in every day. (Probably more than once.) Especially in the beginning, you aren’t going to leave that business alone for even a day. You’re going to be available to your customers big and small, and all of your employee’s are going to have your home number, your cell number, the number of the hotel, heck your mother-in-law’s home number and cell number. Because to be successful, you have to be committed (Some would say in more than one way!) because you’re the only one who really cares. And let’s face it, it’s probably your life and livelihood on the line. A business that doesn’t have the commitment of the owner, is a business that is soon dying on the vine.

I debated whether to put the last “C” at the beginning of the post or the end of the post because I would argue it’s the most important “C” of the three. Ahhhh, CASH. The Elixir of Life for a small business/home-based business. With Cash, all things are possible. Without it, nothing, well, okay, very darn little, is possible. The old saying “Cash is King” is there for a reason: it’s spot on. Cash keeps the wheels turning. It’s why you care what your gross margin is, what your profit margin is, how much insurance you need, and how soon your receivables get paid. Nothing matters more to your business than how much Cash you have and how long it’s going to last. It’s what makes up your dreams, and keeps you awake at the three in the morning. It really is the Elixir of Life for a small business.

So, there you have it, the three “C’s” any small business/home-based business needs more than anything else. If you’ve got these three nailed, you’re going to have far less trouble than most, and what’s even better, you’re going to be able to nurture your fledgling business from Kernal of Hope to thriving Cash Register in no time.

CHA-CHING ya’ll!! ☺

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