This post it’s all bout being a fearless entrepreneur. Let me share with you a story that it is going to help me to clearly illustrate my message. I grew up in a family of entrepreneurs in Mexico. My grandparents, on my dad and mom side, were entrepreneurs.
My father’s dad owned different ventures, from a large coconut plantation to beef distribution and more. He was able to provide to his family of 8 kids and wife everything they needed growing up. He was even able to afford private school to some of his kids, and believe, attending a private school back in the days was a luxury. My dad received the best education he could have gotten at the time, that helped him a lot to become a leader and successful entrepreneur.
My mother’s dad he was also an entrepreneur. He started selling candles at the age of 6 at a local farmers market in the city of Petatlan, Gro. in Mexico. He bought a coffee plantation at the age of 18 and open his first movie theater at the age of 21. He had a nice life. He always had everything he wanted but he was so comfortable with what he had at that time that he never cared about growing his business.
I remember back in the 90’s when dish TV, Sky and all those companies started to hit the market strong in Mexico. My grandpa started to stay: “I never thought I was going to be able to see the end of the movie theaters as we know them.” Honestly, I never thought that was going to happen just because going to the movies is an experience that you can’t easily duplicate at home, plus you are always looking for opportunities to break the routine by doing something different.
Where I want to go with this it’s something that I still see a lot in the Hispanic business community. It’s the fact that no matter what you say to an entrepreneur, if he/she is not interested in growing-expanding, you are never going to be able to persuade them to do so. They are comfortable making enough money to cover the operating expenses of their business and making a small profit. So I can go and talk to them about technology and the benefits of growing the business using the Internet as a business tool and all they are going to hear is bla, bla, bla, bla, bla, bla, bla, bla….I get that and it is totally aceptable.
I’m never going to judge an entrepreneur negatively over that, at least they had the courage to start their own business. But here is the thing, most of the Latinos and Latinas entrepreneurs that I know a lot of times do not think about the future. They are so focused on the present that they completely ignore the future and because of that the business ends up paying big time.
My grandpa was never able to grow his business. He stayed local. The theater is still open but it is not making tons of cash, just enough to pay the bills and have some cash for a nice dinner or so. On the other hand, you see the story of “Cinepolis” the largest Movie Theater chain in Latin America with a presence in some USA markets.
The founder of Cinepolis started around the same time as my grandpa but the difference was that when dish TV, sky and all those started to hit the market; he saw opportunity instead of a threat so that was the time when they start investing heavily into their expansion and they did really well.
The story behind this post is to be a fearless entrepreneur. If you decide to start a business go all in, plan strategically and focus on taking care of business. Patience and persistence can lead you a long way.
Thank you very much for your time. Look forward to hearing back from you.
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