Your Passion

Your Passion

Is passion and business compatible?

You have passion. You have drive. You have an idea to combine your passion and drive into an enterprise. Hey I’m an entrepreneur, I reckon people will love this because I think it is great. Because people will love it , I can make a living doing what I love. Yea! It’s all good.

So you go to your accountant or a business manager and dazzle them with your enthusiasm. They coldly tell you to drop the idea, it has very little viability to generate enough cash to live on and you haven’t even got a proper business plan (as you turn your pad of messy scribbles over).

There goes my self-esteem. But do we listen to them? Do we let them determine the future of our passion? Why is their perspective so different to mine? Good question 99. They look at it as potential income generation only  – the business side. It’s important but not the only factor. Businesses they know and understand may fit their criteria but aren’t always successful. Ever experienced bad customer service from a business owner who doesn’t have people skills? ‘Proper’ business plans are no guarantee of success.

Being an entrepreneur requires many things and passion is paramount. Passion vs profit is not an either or scenario. You can certainly blend the two as many people do. A bit of knowledge, idea generation (looking at things differently), connections and wisdom can certainly overcome initial scepticism of financial gurus. In many ways it is about looking at different ways of doing things that will get your passion to be profitable. For example, reaching out to your ‘ideal client’ more broadly, in different ways, with new allied products, or expanding geographically.

In other words, to keep your passion alive you need to have many strategies, be flexible and adaptive – are the consistent messages. Having a one-way road is not a great plan to success – sometimes it works but not often. With a variety of strategies that evolve as you do, you can go from business stress to passion proud and not passion poor. You still need some kind of plan though – just maybe not the pre-requisite traditional version.

Happy planning.

Innovation vs Adaption

Innovation vs Adaption

Is all innovation new?

There is a lot of hype these days around innovation being the key to enterprise. The hype tends to call everything innovative. So what’s it all about?

To me there are many approaches to enterprise, although innovation certainly fosters creative thinking and opportunity. Whilst most of our regional enterprises are not in the ‘tech startup’ innovation category, there are plenty who simply (or more correctly with plenty of hardship) do things better than others. Maybe it’s with a better level of service, or easier delivery models, or a greater customer focus. In other words, it is innovation in an ‘adaptive’ rather than ‘new’ way. Nothing wrong with that.

Take Mount Alexander Fruit Gardens in Harcourt, central Victoria for example. They are an orchard that grows many varieties of fruit – fairly common for orchards I hear. Anyway, they also run workshops, provide books on the subject, have online support groups & training for people growing their own fruit, and they are very active in our community sharing their knowledge. They also lease out parts of their land to vegetable growers who share the same values. They are truly innovative in an adaptive way.

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