Business Foundation Has Gotten Underrated Because of the Startup Era
Over the past ten years, the world of business has been redefined from the ground up. We used to see these massive corporations dictate the world economy. Trade and politics rely on what is happening in the business sector. Is the stock market up or down today? What is going to happen in the real estate industry tomorrow?
However, in a split second, technology changed everything.
With the emergence of Internet and the commercialization of computing, more creatives and entrepreneurs found a way to monetize a booming market. E-commerce started to rise and eBay was one of the pioneers of the online trade industry.
Then, we started seeing these tech founders and their businesses were then called “startups.” In the transition of dropouts getting millions in funding, the traditional, corporate sector needed to find a way to distinguish them with the brick and mortar businesses they have known for years, thus the popularity of the term, “startup.”
Over the years, many startups have become successful. From Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk to Sofia Amoruso, the public has been made to believe that there is an alternative to the 8-to-5 lifestyle most of us knew. Millennials adapted pretty fast as well considering that they were the intersection of the startup era.
At the same time, authors like Robert Kiyosaki has opened up the discussion of entrepreneurship to public. At some point of exaggeration, it was almost disappointing if someone has not established his or her own startup yet.
But, here lies the rub: people forgot that not everyone is made and is meant to be an entrepreneur.
Because of the oversimplified definition of startups and thousands of “online tips to make money while you sleep,” majority of these startling “founders” find themselves tumbling along the way — some even burning money for marketing and ads with little or no direction to growth at all.
What we’ve lost is the tried and tested structure of these decade-old corporations that had withstood the test of time.
At present, many businesses would feel frustrated if they have not become millionaires after 6 months. The first year would come around and they would get disappointed by their progress that they eventually end up quitting. Most of them do not even reach the 5th year in business.
Robert Kiyosaki has laid out a simplified pyramid of the basic foundation of a strong business. He said in his book that if someone really wants to create a sustainable business, a realistic timeline for putting up the foundation would have to be 5 years.
Now that we’ve reached the get rich, quick scheme era, 5 years feels like a lifetime for most.
Kiyosaki’s B-I (Business-Investor) triangle shows us how a business should lay its foundations.
When we see startups getting multiple series of funding, we miss the behind-the-scenes. When we learned in the news that Steve Jobs became one of the most successful startup founders, we neglected the basic foreground foundation of Apple.
It was featured on Walter Issacson’s biography on Steve Jobs and on the movie “Jobs” where Ashton Kutcher played as the protagonist, that when Apple co-founder Mike Markulla wrote the check that would make Apple, Inc., the very first thing they did was to clear out the legal papers. They put it in writing. Markulla even consulted Jobs on the percentage distribution of the corporation.
This is the legal aspect of the empire. If we will follow the B-I triangle, Apple has gotten it all down. They had the Product. Then, when Markulla stepped in, Jobs and the team was able to establish a cohesive legal system and everything else followed through. Of course, there are other factors that lie under Apple’s success, but they perfected the foundation down before they launched the product to the national market and before they were able to create international branches.
This type of structure takes time and patience. Unless you have a massive cash flow or a minimum of 6-figure funding, lay the basic foundations of your business down to tee.
If you don’t want your business to be just one of those “startups” that failed, lay the foundations right — even if it means you would need to wait 5 years to finally call yourself a millionaire.
Because at the end of the day, failed startups are just glorified ideas with a logo and a dream. Foundation can only be established with proper execution and the following of the step-by-step process the B-I triangle represents.
So, be the exception.
Be patient and lay every single brick on your business’ foundation.
ROME WAS NOT BUILT IN A DAY.