Friday, May 31, 2019

John F Wood Centre for Business and Student Enterprise

I recently attended a board meeting of John F Wood Centre for Business and Student Enterprise.  The topic centred around what sorts of things should a school such as that do.

And of course there was a lively debate about entrepreneurship - one of my favourite topics.

I believe television has created the myth that business ideas are mostly inventions.  In reality, most money is made in business by people doing the same boring thing as every other boring business.  Look around your city - who are the business people - the coffee shop owner, the landlord, the car sales place, the mini storage, the dry cleaner, the jeweller, the lawn care person,  etc etc.  Unlike Shark Tank and Dragon's Den - business is mostly NOT big invention - it is micro-refinements and good implementation (and hard work) of a boring business.

Entrepreneurship is also mislabeled.  An entrepreneur should be willing to risk their time and money - by definition.  What I see is people who say they are entrepreneurs want other people to risk their money so the "entrepreneur" can get paid a salary.   Those same entrepreneurs want to retain most of the upside.

I also see businesses raising money when they should not - they should just be profitable and grow from those profits.  Bootstrapping makes a company strong.   Service companies particularly should not raise money.

I talk a bit about bootstrapping in my Ted Talk.

Perhaps I am just jealous because I had to bootstrap my business and no one paid me a salary.

I worry about climate and the environment.  I saw an interesting article in the Guardian on The Best way to Save the Planet -Drop Meat and Dairy.   I ascribe to that but am not yet vegan.  I am a pescatarian (not a Roman Catholic).  I eat fish and cheese and yogurt. 

Ironically, I am economically conflicted.  Danby has a robust business in dehumidifiers and window and portable air conditioners. 

Still - my preference would be a good environment and I sell less.

The US is at risk of falling behind with Crypto due to SEC regulations.  See this Forbes article.