Are you a fan of the Think Big, Dream Big crowd?
I love big ideas, and I love being around big thinkers. But I’m an even bigger fan of people and companies who ACCOMPLISH big things. Many people who consider themselves big thinkers are mostly just big dreamers. And they either fail to get started or they crash and burn by taking on too much.
I know because I’ve done it.
When I was 25 years old, I was a farmer with big dreams in agribusiness. And I planned and built a state-of-the-art meat processing plant in Middlebury, Vermont. I literally bet the farm I owned on a new enterprise that I and a number of others thought was an idea whose time had come.
My failed strategy was to be diverse in our product and service lines and then eventually focus on those that we found to be most profitable and the ones we were the best at doing. Totally opposite of what I would do today.
My inexperience and my attempt to GO BIG created my first major failure. I learned a lot, but it was painful and costly. Going broke isn’t so bad, but when you end up owing tens of thousands of dollars and nothing to show for it except the experience, it hurts.
I’ve met many people over the years who truly wanted to make a difference in the world. Or, as Steve Jobs said, “put a ding in the Universe.”
But I remember hearing Rich DeVos, the president of Amway Corporation say to a convention of Junior Achievers, “Before you go out to change the world, make sure you clean up your bedroom first.” Good advice.
We have to walk before we can run. And it’s best to learn making smaller, less costly mistakes so you build experience and resources to take on bigger challenges.
Think big. but start small.
If you’re interested in learning how to start a business that supports who you are, what you’re about and how you want to live, take a look at our Lifestyle Business System. It will teach you how to build something that makes a difference without having to take any big risks and learn while you grow.