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Starting and Growing a Successful Business
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DVY Offline
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Post: #26
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
hes def. legit. Thought process, mentality on money, and people psychology all line up.

The self-made super wealthy interacts w/the world and others much differently than typical media caricatures of "big ballers". Erase that picture from your head. Its just advertising flash

WIA- For most of men, our time being masters of our own fate, kings in our own castles is short. Even those of us in the game will eventually succumb to ease of servitude rather than deal with the malaise of solitude
02-27-2014 03:40 PM
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Abnormal Offline
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Post: #27
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
Gringuito, thank you very much for the golden information you are sharing.

I got couple of questions for you:

1) What were your biggest product failures?

2) What have you learnt about selecting/hiring people?

3)What happens if a bus hits you tomorrow? What will your business do?

4)What are the strategies you use to get inside your customer's mind?

5) What are the best strategies that made you your first $1,000,000?

6) I know you said don't marry, and I don't plan to. But I heard/read so many successful people promote getting married, stopping chasing poosy and concentrating on the biz. what do you think about that?

7) What are the 3 books that helped you most in your success?

8) Tell us about your one smart and interesting failure this past year

Thanks a lot man!
02-27-2014 04:35 PM
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cardguy Offline
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Post: #28
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
Hey Gringuito,

Do you think those who will be successful in business are basically born with a special spark?

Or do you think it is simpler than that - and is an avenue open to many and not just those who were born with the skills?
02-27-2014 04:54 PM
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Gringuito Offline
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Post: #29
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
Warning, wall of text coming...

(02-27-2014 09:58 AM)Valhalla Wrote:  Do you own any businesses op?

Yes, both in the past and currently.

(02-27-2014 12:41 PM)GyopoPlayboy Wrote:  Im also curious about what you do, OP. You wrote in your post that you are giving some of your own thoughts plus advice from "someone that's been there." Is this "someone" you? Or are you just listing what you've observed?

Yes, it's my experiences.

(02-27-2014 04:35 PM)Abnormal Wrote:  1) What were your biggest product failures?

Good question. I've had quite a few that didn't work out. I have a COO that I've known forever. His job is to listen to my crazy ideas and help me filter the 90% of crap. Even with that filtering we've tried things that didn't work. The biggest failure was a tech product for an industry far away from my normal target market. I still think it's a good idea but it never got traction. Letting go your entire staff is tough, but you have to know when something isn't working.

(02-27-2014 04:35 PM)Abnormal Wrote:  2) What have you learnt about selecting/hiring people?

You have to pay big bucks/big percentages for the best people. And they are worth it. The difference between a mediocre employee and a good one is an order of magnitude.

(02-27-2014 04:35 PM)Abnormal Wrote:  3)What happens if a bus hits you tomorrow? What will your business do?

Estate planning is a whole other topic we could start a tread about. I have a 3 inch binder that describes mine. I've setup a group of people that would work together (some in my companies some from my family) to keep things going. Estate taxes are a really big issue for business owners. You don't want to create a company that has to be sold at the lowest possible price just to pay estate taxes when you die.

(02-27-2014 04:35 PM)Abnormal Wrote:  4)What are the strategies you use to get inside your customer's mind?

I'll have to think about how to put that into words. I just do it. It may be what I do the best. I have a knack for making thinks that people seem to want.

(02-27-2014 04:35 PM)Abnormal Wrote:  5) What are the best strategies that made you your first $1,000,000?

I described this earlier in the rags to riches post. I was very lucky to be working for a company that recognized how much money I was making for them. I received a large amount of money that I used to fund my first larger company. Before that I had started companies but I never had the cash to make them go too far.

(02-27-2014 04:35 PM)Abnormal Wrote:  6) I know you said don't marry, and I don't plan to. But I heard/read so many successful people promote getting married, stopping chasing poosy and concentrating on the biz. what do you think about that?

If that worked for them that's great. If you find a great woman that can help you in your life and not change when you become rich, marry her. That to me is a unicorn. In my experience money changes people and women are people. Add the great divorce laws and you have a volatile mix. In addition, if she decides to divorce you then all of your employees will pay for that decision. They may be fired or laid off because you picked the wrong wife. On the other hand finding a good honest wife after you've had some success, another mine field.

(02-27-2014 04:35 PM)Abnormal Wrote:  7) What are the 3 books that helped you most in your success?

1) Millionaire Next Door: I found out I wasn't weird and many successful people think like I do.

2) The Ten Commandments for Business Failure: It's actually about success.

3) Good to Great: I read this quite a long time ago, I need to read it again

(02-27-2014 04:35 PM)Abnormal Wrote:  8) Tell us about your one smart and interesting failure this past year

That would be tougher to tell without being too specific. The failure was much more personal and not business related.
02-27-2014 05:12 PM
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Gringuito Offline
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Post: #30
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
(02-27-2014 04:54 PM)cardguy Wrote:  Do you think those who will be successful in business are basically born with a special spark?

Or do you think it is simpler than that - and is an avenue open to many and not just those who were born with the skills?

I think anyone can do it. I like to say that I was too stupid to know the odds I was up against. I was also lucky to have a relative that was also a serial entrepreneur. He had a new business almost every year. I learned about business failure from him, and that he finally succeeded.
02-27-2014 05:18 PM
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cardguy Offline
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Post: #31
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
Gringuito - I just discovered your posts in this thread. Am going to go back and check out your other posts.

Thanks for sharing your insights.
02-27-2014 05:20 PM
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cardguy Offline
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Post: #32
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
To be successful in business do you have to devote all your time to it?

As such - does it became both a job and something that takes the place of any hobbies as well? Personally - I hate thinkigng about work and love switching off, reading books and so on. As such - would that mindset be a pretty bad one to even think about going into business with?
02-27-2014 06:16 PM
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Abnormal Offline
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Post: #33
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
Thanks again, Gringuito! I am taking notes here!

Sorry in advance, but you clearly got lots of wisdom so here is few more:

9) How important is communication in your success?

10) How important are the contacts you made?

11) Did you always expect to be a success?

12) You must have had setbacks, how best to deal with it?

13) How much importance do you put on marketing?

14) How do you become an absentee business owner?

15) What would you definitely buy from me if I was smart enough to offer it to you?

16) Your thoughts on speed of implementation?

17) How do you keep a small business from being small minded?

18) Role of referrals in your business? How do you nurture lifetime relationships with customers and orchestrate referrals?

19) How do you stay afloat in the ocean of rejection?

20) Do you worry about competitors? Why not?

21) How do you get to the economic decision maker in a company you'd like to sell to/work with?

22) What would you do if you got paid ONLY when your client gets the result?

23) If you lost everything today and had to start fresh, what would you do and in what industry?

24) Is your product a "Vitamin" or "Pain Killer"? Your comment on this Entrepreneur's article would be really appreciated:
http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/230736

25) How often do you have unhappy customers in your business(es)? What was the last example and how did you(your team) deal with it?

26) When do you know that it is the time to sell business?

27) Is there any perpetuity of purchase set up in your businesses? What would be an example?

28) What was the longest gap in time between when your customer purchased the product and came back to re-purchase?

29) Are you friends with employees? Or is it something that shouldn't be practiced? ( drinking with them or going to a cottage)? How do you set boundaries?

30) Let's say someone wants to buy your business for 10mil, how do you sell it to them for 15mil and how do you find other suitors to compete?

31) What was your costliest mistake in business and in other areas?

32) Would you agree that the highest paid person in a company should be the sales guy that brings the largest volume of business?

33) If your competitor tried, how would they beat you?

34) Your thoughts on saying : "The hardest ship to sail is partnership"?

35) Does it bother you if you lose a big account/ client? Do you get upset?

Muchos Gracias!
02-27-2014 06:19 PM
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WestCoast Offline
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Post: #34
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
(Delete)
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02-27-2014 06:28 PM
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Post: #35
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
Alot of times you just wind up falling into businesses. Not to take anything away from people who do because even falling into something it's not pure luck it happens because you have your eyes open for opportunities but sometimes thigns just fall into your lap.

I was working in a relatively low paying retail job but realized an opportunity not being met by my company. I started out selling on ebay with a buddy maybe making $50 a week. Then grew it to a free .blogspot website with Google Blogger and put up paypal buttons. Obviously not the most customer friendly or professional looking thing but grew the site, then migrated to a godaddy template site and finally reached out to an Indian web design and SEO company who designed us a custom site.

First year we were making 3k-5k a month which isn't huge money but when its a part time gig a nice side income. Things blew up at about a year and a half and were pulling in 15k to 20k a month although we don't see most of the money gets rolled into the business or gets tied up in merchant processing holds.

I'm at the point where I may quit my day job although having some legal problems in regads to my business at the moment so things are still kind of up in the air. The one thing I dont like about my business is due to regulations as well as needing to ship things cheaply it's not something I can really turn over to someone else and be location independent which is my ultimate goal.
02-27-2014 07:18 PM
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Hef Offline
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Post: #36
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
Gringuito,

What do you know about how tech startups at various levels or progress are valued by angel investors or VCs? Say a startup with just an idea, a startup with a 'just-launched' website or app, and a startup that's been around for a couple of years but has no revenue?

Have you been in a meeting with investors where the value of the company or business is determined? Are people just throwing darts at a board to come up with a figure - since there's no revenue?

Is there a back & forth - the tech company's founders/owners say that their company is worth X because of the idea, the market size, the technology, the number of users, etc. - then the investors/financiers counter by laughing at that, etc.

A show on TV called "Shark Tank" comes to mind..

And the example above of $17,000 for 6% giving a valuation of $280k - is there science/math behind this or just again throwing darts...
02-27-2014 08:25 PM
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Hef Offline
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Post: #37
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
(02-27-2014 03:40 PM)DVY Wrote:  hes def. legit. Thought process, mentality on money, and people psychology all line up.

The self-made super wealthy interacts w/the world and others much differently than typical media caricatures of "big ballers". Erase that picture from your head. Its just advertising flash

What are the typical media caricatures of "big ballers"? Like those rappers "making it rain" at a club?

And what behavior(s) is revealing of a person who is super wealthy?
02-27-2014 08:35 PM
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TheBulldozer Offline
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Post: #38
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
This thread is an absolute masterpiece of information.

You can learn in 15 minutes from this thread what you couldn't learn in 15 lifetimes from a mediocre person.
02-27-2014 10:46 PM
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WestCoast Offline
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Post: #39
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
After reading this thread I am now certain that in under 50 posts I can tell how much money someone makes.

This is actually a good thing already changed my mind on how to read on the Internet.

--

I also find it hilarious that he wrote "warning wall of text coming" as if no one should care about his opinion lol.

---

Fuck now that I see abnormal liked this bloody post (he may remove it) I have to call you out now. You are being rude and you are wasting his time with 35 questions.The delete was meant to be the photo below.

Facepalm

I have personally apologized to Gringuito for asking him to start this thread... But at least I learned something if that counts for anything Smile
(This post was last modified: 02-27-2014 11:09 PM by WestCoast.)
02-27-2014 10:50 PM
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WestCoast Offline
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Post: #40
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
Hmm since I am being a bit of a dick in the post above I will tell you how VCs value the firm assuming it has no revenue.

I am only going to give the highlights because if Gringuito answered that it would immediately tell everyone what exactly he does and that is not cool.

Here is the high level truth.

1. Average people think vc investing is about "numbers". No. That is why shark tank and all the other paparazzi stuff on TV is commercial nonsense (yes some of it goes through)
2. They want to see how passionate you are. I am not joking here this is a legitimate part of the process. If you have minimal revenue but the TAM is $10B+ what the hell do they care? They won't they want to know if your product actually works and if you're willing to ruin your life chasing a dream.
3. VCs are interested in leveraging a position over time! It's like a reverse mortgage, you don't know you're losing that equity value a bitch who sees her looks decline starting at 25. I literally saw his answer to VCs laughed out loud and knew for sure he was not trolling. (A more easy to understand example is think of VCs as activist hedge funds slowly eating up a slice of the equity then yelling down your throat on getting to the valuation and selling/going public).

Now why can't he tell you how he thinks? Here is why.

Each market is extremely specific.

Take a high tech storage company, they run a negative earnings for decades
Take a social media company (whatsapp) how come people invested in that? Similar model losses for decades
Now let's say he runs a software company well margin profile should be high so losses are less time consuming and it makes sense to look at actual multiples because they can be turned to profit quick

Anyway the two points I laid above is really the two items in how vc is different from bullshit you learn in college about "numbers man numbers!"

That is why he won't be able to answer all of those if he rally laid out what he looks at he would be outed right now. This is why I am trying to ask him questions on how he thinks about valuing people notice in my first question he said "that is where he magic is" but then he can't explain his "knack"... Well I will tell you if you can figure out how to mimic his "knack" you'll be richer than everyone reading this forum in 10 years. (Except maybe Gringuito lol!)

---

One of my favorite vc investors once said

"I don't give a fuck about valuations I give a fuck about value"
(This post was last modified: 02-27-2014 11:30 PM by WestCoast.)
02-27-2014 11:22 PM
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Beyond Borders Away
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Post: #41
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
(02-27-2014 12:41 PM)GyopoPlayboy Wrote:  Im also curious about what you do, OP. You wrote in your post that you are giving some of your own thoughts plus advice from "someone that's been there." Is this "someone" you? Or are you just listing what you've observed?

Not to be rude, but is English your second language?

It's an expression letting us know that he's talking about his own real world experience rather than theory.

Yes, the someone who has been there is him.

http://BeyondAllSeas.com
"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe.
To be your own man is a hard business. If you try it, you'll be lonely often, and sometimes
frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself." - Kipling
(This post was last modified: 02-27-2014 11:30 PM by Beyond Borders.)
02-27-2014 11:29 PM
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paninaro Offline
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Post: #42
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
(02-27-2014 08:25 PM)Hef Wrote:  What do you know about how tech startups at various levels or progress are valued by angel investors or VCs? Say a startup with just an idea, a startup with a 'just-launched' website or app, and a startup that's been around for a couple of years but has no revenue?

Have you been in a meeting with investors where the value of the company or business is determined? Are people just throwing darts at a board to come up with a figure - since there's no revenue?

Is there a back & forth - the tech company's founders/owners say that their company is worth X because of the idea, the market size, the technology, the number of users, etc. - then the investors/financiers counter by laughing at that, etc.

And the example above of $17,000 for 6% giving a valuation of $280k - is there science/math behind this or just again throwing darts...

Normally you'll back your valuation with numbers on what peers are doing. If you're in an area that's "hot" at the moment, then other similar companies will have been funded and you can use those valuations for comparison. Then you'll throw in some metrics, like maybe all companies don't have revenue, but they have X number of users and you have 2X and scale accordingly. CrunchBase has some funding numbers and their data is free. There's also a company that sells this information on a subscription basis, in more detail. I forget the name as it's been years since I used it, but I think it was from Thomson Reuters.
02-27-2014 11:30 PM
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paninaro Offline
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Post: #43
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
(02-27-2014 10:50 PM)WestCoast Wrote:  Fuck now that I see abnormal liked this bloody post (he may remove it) I have to call you out now. You are being rude and you are wasting his time with 35 questions.The delete was meant to be the photo below.

I agree. 35 questions is just plain overwhelming, and is too time-consuming for someone to respond to.
02-27-2014 11:32 PM
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Beyond Borders
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Post: #44
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
^Give an inch, they take a mile.

http://BeyondAllSeas.com
"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe.
To be your own man is a hard business. If you try it, you'll be lonely often, and sometimes
frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself." - Kipling
02-27-2014 11:34 PM
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Post: #45
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
(02-27-2014 06:19 PM)Abnormal Wrote:  Thanks again, Gringuito! I am taking notes here!

Sorry in advance, but you clearly got lots of wisdom so here is few more:

...Gazzilion questions follow...

It's quite rude to bombard someone with questions like that. It would take a lot of work to answer that list, and your questions are obviously generalised nonsense rather than specific to your own needs.

Is this some sort of new trolling method?

A beginner's guide to jobhunting and networking
02-27-2014 11:44 PM
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Hef Offline
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Post: #46
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
(02-27-2014 11:30 PM)paninaro Wrote:  
(02-27-2014 08:25 PM)Hef Wrote:  What do you know about how tech startups at various levels or progress are valued by angel investors or VCs? Say a startup with just an idea, a startup with a 'just-launched' website or app, and a startup that's been around for a couple of years but has no revenue?

Have you been in a meeting with investors where the value of the company or business is determined? Are people just throwing darts at a board to come up with a figure - since there's no revenue?

Is there a back & forth - the tech company's founders/owners say that their company is worth X because of the idea, the market size, the technology, the number of users, etc. - then the investors/financiers counter by laughing at that, etc.

And the example above of $17,000 for 6% giving a valuation of $280k - is there science/math behind this or just again throwing darts...

Normally you'll back your valuation with numbers on what peers are doing. If you're in an area that's "hot" at the moment, then other similar companies will have been funded and you can use those valuations for comparison. Then you'll throw in some metrics, like maybe all companies don't have revenue, but they have X number of users and you have 2X and scale accordingly. CrunchBase has some funding numbers and their data is free. There's also a company that sells this information on a subscription basis, in more detail. I forget the name as it's been years since I used it, but I think it was from Thomson Reuters.

How would one explain why Viber (300 million users) sold for 900mil while WhatsApp (450 million users) sold for 19Billion?

What goes on in the room during the negotiations? Are people from both sides friendly or are they cussing at each other?
02-27-2014 11:51 PM
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WestCoast Offline
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Post: #47
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
^ i already personally answered this question. On the "whatsapp" thread on EE.

27B messages in a day securely converted. Wwt posted a hint as well but I gave up on the thread a while ago and will no longer give more information on the deal/technology and or valuation.

I will, answer the last part though. No there is no cussing that is big media bullshit. It is more like poker and passive aggressiveness. It is "intense" but not yelling, cussing, blackmailing etc. that is for children and the 99%.

---

Anyway, I hope gringuito can provide more color on how he evaluates people, hence my little set trap sales force question but that's again explaining the "knack" which is god awfully difficult to do.

--

Edit: I find it appropriate that I just hit 3,000 posts and personally owned myself by giving long winded responses to a guy who has 6 posts....I am ashamed of myself right now lol.fucking mobile! Roosh please find a way to put post history on mobile I will pay you for it!

Good night guys!
(This post was last modified: 02-28-2014 12:08 AM by WestCoast.)
02-27-2014 11:56 PM
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Post: #48
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
(02-27-2014 11:22 PM)WestCoast Wrote:  Hmm since I am being a bit of a dick in the post above I will tell you how VCs value the firm assuming it has no revenue.

I am only going to give the highlights because if Gringuito answered that it would immediately tell everyone what exactly he does and that is not cool.

Here is the high level truth.

1. Average people think vc investing is about "numbers". No. That is why shark tank and all the other paparazzi stuff on TV is commercial nonsense (yes some of it goes through)
2. They want to see how passionate you are. I am not joking here this is a legitimate part of the process. If you have minimal revenue but the TAM is $10B+ what the hell do they care? They won't they want to know if your product actually works and if you're willing to ruin your life chasing a dream.
3. VCs are interested in leveraging a position over time! It's like a reverse mortgage, you don't know you're losing that equity value a bitch who sees her looks decline starting at 25. I literally saw his answer to VCs laughed out loud and knew for sure he was not trolling. (A more easy to understand example is think of VCs as activist hedge funds slowly eating up a slice of the equity then yelling down your throat on getting to the valuation and selling/going public).

Now why can't he tell you how he thinks? Here is why.

Each market is extremely specific.

Take a high tech storage company, they run a negative earnings for decades
Take a social media company (whatsapp) how come people invested in that? Similar model losses for decades
Now let's say he runs a software company well margin profile should be high so losses are less time consuming and it makes sense to look at actual multiples because they can be turned to profit quick

Anyway the two points I laid above is really the two items in how vc is different from bullshit you learn in college about "numbers man numbers!"

That is why he won't be able to answer all of those if he rally laid out what he looks at he would be outed right now. This is why I am trying to ask him questions on how he thinks about valuing people notice in my first question he said "that is where he magic is" but then he can't explain his "knack"... Well I will tell you if you can figure out how to mimic his "knack" you'll be richer than everyone reading this forum in 10 years. (Except maybe Gringuito lol!)

---

One of my favorite vc investors once said

"I don't give a fuck about valuations I give a fuck about value"

Thanks for the response. Determining the value is what I'm interested in. Question is how to get there. Traditional valuation process is one way. I'm sure there are other ways, that's why I hinted at "throwing darts"... charm, seduction, politics, throwing your weight around, bs, blackmail, threats, etc are also other methods.

I'm a firm believer that you don't get what you deserve - you get what you negotiate for.
02-28-2014 12:01 AM
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Abnormal Offline
Game Denialist

Posts: 62
Joined: Jan 2014
Reputation: 14
Post: #49
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
I did not mean to offend anyone. I genuinely want to hear the answers from a successful man. That's what this thread is for and all my questions are business-related.

Thanks!
02-28-2014 12:03 AM
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WestCoast Offline
International Playboy
******
Gold Member

Posts: 3,153
Joined: Mar 2012
Reputation: 85
Post: #50
RE: Starting and Growing a Successful Business
^ I am going to give you a business tip. There are a total of 3 questions (i am being generous maybe 2) in there that are business related, the rest are keyboard jockey "I am just going to waste your time with pie in the sky questions"

Some of them are downright insulting for a guy like him (obviously he is cool and doesn't care but 99.99% of people are not like this) because it shows you didn't even bother looking up the answer a perfect example is eg. How do you find other buyers... 5 seconds of google will get you the answer.

I don't know how anyone with a good conscious can ask so much of someone who has better things to do, that is why it was incredibly rude.

Do not waste the time of people who can help you.
(This post was last modified: 02-28-2014 12:16 AM by WestCoast.)
02-28-2014 12:14 AM
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[-] The following 10 users Like WestCoast's post:
Thomas the Rhymer, Beyond Borders, Teutatis, CJ_W, paninaro, Atlantic, Vaun, Icarus, GlobalMan, betterasianbrother
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