Archive for February 2013

Understanding your financials (Part 2) – Calculating your business’ break-even point

“A fool and his money are soon parted”
- Thomas Tusser -

And now back to our lemonade stand…

Jenny and I looked at each other, then up at the ceiling and back to staring at each other. We were puzzled. We did not know how much we should charge for each cup of lemonade. We were smart enough to know we need to price our lemonade intelligently. We knew if we price it too low we will have many clients but we will not be able to cover our costs. We also knew if we charge too much, no one will come and drink our tasty lemonade.

After talking with my mom, Jenny and I understood the importance of calculating the break-even point or the point at which the money we pay out (our lemonade stand expenses) is equal to the amount of money which our lemonade stand will receive from our thirsty clients. At that point, our lemonade stand costs and revenue are the same, or it is the point we will “Break-Even”. You can find more about break-even at “Understanding your financials (Part 1) – What is your business’ break-even point?”. Read more

The Hope Strategy

“He that lives upon hope will die fasting”
- Benjamin Franklin –

I just finished reading Tony Hsieh’s, Zappos.com CEO’s latest book Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose, I am trying to remember why I had bought the book, probably it’s because I love buying at Zappos.com. They have the best selection of shoes (in any size, shape and color!), and they’re always creating unbelievable shopping experience like the time my order arrived the next day although I only paid for the regular shipping! Amazing! Customer relationship rules :-). Read more

Understanding your financials (Part 1) – What is your business’ break-even point?

Money is better than poverty, if only for financial reasons.
- Woody Allen -

Poor Mr. Joe, he really tried very hard to make a living. Mr. Joe opened his pizzeria few years ago, he was excited and enthusiastic, people told him opening a pizzeria is a sure thing, Joe thought of all the money he is going to make. He rented a nice place a few blocks away from my store. He bought (on credit) a great brick oven. He bought (on credit) Italian silverware. Mr. Joe contracted a few suppliers for dough, cheese and a tomato sauce distributor and paid them upfront. And one Friday evening, he hung a big sign in front of his store – “Grand Opening”.

That night, he got his first few customers and then a few more, and at the end of the month his business made money, yea! Real money, but for some reason, after paying his rent, his vendors and the various credit cards and loans, he needed more money. So he took another business loan. Read more

The Power of Failing

“Why do we fall, Bruce? So we can learn to pick ourselves up.”
- Batman Begins / Warner Bros. Pictures, DC Comics –

Today has been one of those days, you know, the day nothing works out. I had a big order coming in and the guy just bailed out on me at the last moment. What should I do now with 100 boxes of chocolates? Each chocolate is engraved with the words “honey bunny” in pink on top of a chocolate shaped as a white bunny.

At the start I rejected the option of failing, when I started my business I said I will never fail. I will do everything in order to succeed. Failure is not an option! I worked so hard, so many long hours. I took no vacation, just the store, home, kids. Chocolate, chores and play dates. Doing, doing and doing. Failure is not an option, I can do it all.

And then one day I failed, I delivered the wrong chocolate order, I missed my daughter’s ballet class and it was painful. You know, failure hurts. It is painful. I did not want to have this feeling again. I was afraid. Read more