What is the name of your business and what type of industry are you in?
My New Enterprise – We are an entrepreneurial training and film production company. We travel the world documenting the stories of successful entrepreneurs and helping business owners grow their companies.
How old where you when you started your first business?
I was 24 years old when I first started a software company for the transportation industry.
How did you know you were an entrepreneur?
I’ve always been very independent. As a kid, I used to tell my mom that I wanted to “own hotels” when I grew up. After I graduated from high school, I took a two-year sabbatical to Europe. When I got back to the States, I bounced around from job to job for a few years while I was looking for the right business to start. After a failed stint as a ski bum and restaurant server, I finally decided to take the leap and started my first company. Things didn’t always go smoothly with that company and I made a lot of mistakes, but it was the best professional decision I ever made.
What is something you do on a daily basis that you believe aids in your success?
Exercise – It helps me clear my head and focus. I also try to do something fun that makes me laugh every day.
What is best advice you received while starting your business?
Fail quickly and cheaply.
What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about starting a business?
Fail quickly and cheaply. (Best advice I ever received.)
Also, things will not go the way you expect them to go, so be prepared to pivot and change directions.
What is one resource you cannot run your business without?
We couldn’t run our company without great mentors and advisors. I’ve tried to build a network of successful business builders whom I respect and who are willing to provide guidance. When I have a question or my business is facing a challenge, I am always quick to ask for help.
What is the best book you have read this year?
Financial Intelligence by: Karen Berman and Joe Knight
Leadership and Self-Deception by: Arbinger Institute
How can we connect with you?
Twitter: @mynewenterprise Personal Twitter: @shawnsadowski
Open advice or words of wisdom:
I talk with people all the time who have great business ideas. In fact, almost everyone has an idea. Unfortunately, there is a big difference between a great business idea and a real business opportunity. I have found that a real business opportunity typically consists of the following components: (1) An idea for meeting or better meeting a need, (2) A credible position within the industry, (3) The resources needed to implement the idea, and (4) Customers who are ready to buy the product RIGHT NOW!
Some aspiring entrepreneurs believe a “great idea” is everything (component 1), and that anyone can turn it into a business. While this may have been true in past decades, today’s ever changing economy requires excellent execution of the idea (components 2, 3 and 4). When all four components align themselves, starting a business becomes much less risky and successful entrepreneurs will typically have the courage to take the risk and face the challenge.
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