The following 6 tips on Building a Business is written by Tom Szaky of TerraCycle.
1. Take risks
- It's OK. Risk-taking is critical. You can't win without risking something, and you could be risking anything. You could be risking time. You could be risking money.
2. Work hard (even if it means shoveling garbage)
- A good idea is important, but 99 percent of your success is that you're willing to work incredibly hard and commit yourself to it.
3. Get over mistakes
- We make mistakes all day long. I couldn't even answer what our biggest mistake is. We just constantly make mistakes, but we learn over and over and over again. As long we learn from them, we don't do them a second time.
4. Set goals
- Define what it is your company does and then where you want to get in 10 years. Lay out a plan on how you're going to get there in 10 years and, in effect, work backward. What are the day-to-day functions that you have to happen? Create a game plan. We try to plan out what we want to accomplish and then work problem by problem.
5. Challenges make way for growth
- The trick I've found is that you've just got to get through the roller coaster, and every time you go through a big up and down, something changes. Every time I go through a moment where it's like ultimate desperation, as soon as we get out of it, we've grown.
6. Grab the media attention
- Media is an important aspect of building a business, because how can you afford to get your name out when you have no money? Just call. Call and call and call and call. Make lots of phone calls, and try to make it easy for the reporter to be able to write.
About the author: Founded in 2001 by Tom Szaky, then a 20-year-old Princeton University freshman, TerraCycle began by producing organic fertilizer, packaging liquid worm poop in used soda bottles. Since then TerraCycle has grown into one of the fastest growing green companies in the world. TerraCycle’s purpose is to eliminate the idea of waste.
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