Posted: June 01, 2009
On management: So you want to start a business?
I have pretty much lived my dream... perhaps I can help you do the sameBy Pat Wiesner
In the early ’80s, things got tough for the Wiesner family. I was working for a medium-sized publishing company. A pretty good company. I was its president, doing well, but I wasn’t happy.
I don’t remember exactly why, but looking back it was probably because underneath it all I didn’t like the way I was being president. I was looking for trouble, and I got in an argument with the chairman about money. Specifically my pay (which really wasn’t that bad looking back on it now). It escalated into a stand-up shouting match in which he fired me and I quit at almost the same instant.
So much for my good job. Quitting was an incredibly positive rush for about a day. At the same time we were in a national recession, I was 44 years old, we had four kids in college and a 2-year-old, we lived in a nice area in Columbine, and we were slowly running out of money while I tried to be a publishing consultant.
With my back sort of at the wall and $3,000 in my pocket, I convinced two other very capable people to come into business with me, Jim Fahenstock and Phil Cook. They each took some stock (worth nothing obviously) in the company and modest pay, to enjoy the experience and perhaps make our own success.
They were very good at their jobs, and we were very lucky because we hit a home run with the very first magazine we tried, Mobile Radio Technology. We were able to borrow enough money to keep going and keep growing. We started a lot of new magazines and brought on a lot of good people. We published at one time or another around 40 different magazines, founded a half dozen profitable trade shows, had five offices around the country in major cities and had a blast doing it. I think our organization took most pride in growing our own people to move up in our company.
Nearly 25 years later I retired. It was a great run. I did a lot, and I learned a lot. Now I’d like to share whatever I have learned with other men and women who would like to start their own businesses. Not for me to make money, but for the pure pleasure of it!
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Here is what we intend to do: Hold a series of workshops for people who are out of work and/or contemplating starting their own business. The workshops will be free, no strings attached. They will be held Thursdays beginning June 11. The first meeting will be limited to 15 people. Call Christy in the a.m. or Donna in the p.m. at (303) 662-5200 to get your slot and the location. First come, served.
First we will discuss things like Who can do it? How long does it take to be successful? What do you do when everything is going wrong? How to test your idea, Where to get Money, How to do a Budget, Setting up an office, How to make a group of People into a Team. And much more. And we will try to answer all questions.
So, remember free, Thursdays, call now for a reservation and time and place. The only requirements: You must be out of work and/or contemplating your own business (which of course means that you could be working and contemplating your own business). When you call we will ask for your name and either phone or e-mail address.
So call! Do it!
Pat Wiesner is the retired CEO of WiesnerMedia, publisher of ColoradoBiz. He still leads sales training for the company. E-mail him at email@example.com.