FROM THE FOREWORD
BY KEN BLANCHARD
How many times have you heard the phrase, “That’s what it’s all about?” Those five words are as overused as any in the English languageand can refer to anything from sinking a 30-foot putt to seeing a newborn baby for the first time.
You are about to come face to face to those words once again. Because if you own a small business or plan to begin a new venture in the future, this book is what small business is all about!
COMMON SENSE BUSINESS is an energizing, inspiring, provocative personal “letter” to you from my friend and co-author of THE ON-TIME, ON-TARGET MANAGER, Steve Gottry. In fact, until now, I had never seen so much solid business advice dispensed in a single book.”
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AN “ENCOURAGING WORD”
FROM THE AUTHOR…
This is one of those “Been There, Done That” books. I wrote it specifically so that you don’t have to “Go There and Do Likewise.”
When I began my advertising agency fresh out of the Journalism and Radio-Television Production programs at the University of Minnesota, I was utterly unprepared for the challenges I would face in the months and years ahead. The double major path that I had chosen to follow included a one-semester basic economics course, but little else that related to starting, operating and growing a successful business.
Things were fairly simple at first. I was my agency’s only employee, and I hid myself away in a small office on the second floor of a recording studio in south Minneapolis. That’s a story of its’ own. I sometimes had to stuff plugs in my ears so that I could concentrate on my writing and design projects, while some rock band recorded the same screeching guitar riff over and over until they got it just right. I thought recording studios were supposed to be soundproof. This one wasn’t.
The business got more complicated when I hired my first employeeKarol Ann Van Regenmorter Throntveit. (I have no clue why I can still remember her entire name.) She was a great employee, so she was not what complicated my business life. She made it better. What made it more difficult was the government. All of a sudden, I had posters to post, regulations to follow, payroll taxes and related forms to submit…on and on it went. I also had an increasing number of clients who managed to multiply my level of stress.
It wasn’t long before my business hit a major bump. Someone who owed me $22,000 decided he wasn’t going to pay. The business of my dreams came very close to going away. It was saved solely by the understanding and compassion of a couple of vendors to whom I owed a lot of money.
Throughout the years that followed, I faced countless other challenges. Eventually, so many disasters occurred at the same time that I was forced out of business. Could I have predicted them? Probably. Could I have prevented them? Possibly. Could I have survived them? Almost certainly! But only if I had knownat the right timeall of the secrets that I share with you in COMMON SENSE BUSINESS.
In fact, I’ve used the advice in my own book throughout the process of starting and operating my new business, Priority Multimedia Group, Inc. Although it has a different focus than my ad agency had, it’s still media-based and provides the creative outlets I need in my life. I love writing books, developing screenplays, working with my friend Dave Gjerness on Web sites and marketing projects, and producing cutting-edge videos. I enjoy employing new technologies and building a company by utilizing the services of the best creative people I can possibly find. It’s an adventure that I still pursue with tenacity. It’s also a game. And I’m glad I can still play it!
I urge you to live your dream, start your business, nurture its growth and enjoy the long-term rewards of your diligence! And have fun every day! If I can do it, you can do it!
But read COMMON SENSE BUSINESS first. I’m guessing that this book will become your most indispensable business tool!
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