Introduction to Entrepreneurship
1. Identify three nonfinancial benefits of entrepreneurship that might be important to you. Write a paragraph about each.
This first nonfinancial benefit of entrepreneurship for me is control of my future. I say this because even though working for a company I do have control of what I do and where I go. I don’t have control of what the company does as it moves forward and making critical decisions regarding its future. Some of the things I would like to have control of are, building and sustaining a business’s culture from the ground up and hiring of top management to fit the new company’s culture to name a couple.
The second nonfinancial benefit for me to own my own business would be a flexible work/life schedule. Being able to do things when and how I want is a very appealing part of owning my own business. Being able to work from home if I please, being able to attend family functions without conflict, and being able to coach my children’s sports teams are all reasons I find important.
The third and final nonfinancial benefit of entrepreneurship for me is ability to choose the people I work with. Currently I wouldn’t say that I don’t like the people I work with, I just think there are people in positions they have no place being. The idea of being able to control that aspect of my business is very attractive. Hiring the right people that I believe could bring success to my business is an awesome thought.
2. If you were to start a business, what would be your opportunity costs? In other words, what is the next best use of your time? How much money could you make working at a job instead? The answer to this question will give you a rough idea of how to value your time when you start a business and have to figure out how much to pay yourself.
Depending on the business I plan on starting would really determine my opportunity costs. I will use consulting for example, it’s very difficult to have a full time job and also do consulting work even part time due to customer demands and the travel involved. In this case I think the decision would come down to how much money can I make doing consulting work full time compared to my current full time job? If I can make more consulting and I enjoy the work then it becomes a no brainer. For me the unknown but also exciting part of it is making the transition from employee to owner.
3. Describe an idea you have for a business. Explain how it could satisfy a consumer need.
In my current position as Manager of Continuous Improvement for the Raymond Corporation I teach and train lean principles related to the Toyota Production System (TPS). Over the past couple of years I’ve had the ability travel to our dealerships and share the concepts with executives at their respective organizations throughout North America. When I first started in my position I found that even though the company is owned by Toyota there were very few people that understood TPS. I developed a 2 day workshop consisting of classroom and hands-on exercises that instill the spirit of TPS and now I teach it to our dealer network. I have also attended many logistics and lean seminars with other managers and executives who often ask me for advice on the implementation of TPS. The more I have traveled and the more workshops I have conducted with executives, the more I see that there is a need not only for Raymond but also for other businesses. The best part of what I do is the concepts and principles I teach can be applied in any business process to control and most often times lower operating costs which leads to bottom line results for any company. In conjunction with the seminars I recognize the need by being heavily recruited by lean consulting firms over the past 2 years. Some other reasons I see lean consulting as a viable business is the response I get from executives after the workshop. Dave Reder is the CEO and President of Carolina Handling