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Founded After 40

How to Start a Business When You Haven't Got Time to Waste

By Glenda Shawley
13-minute read
Audio available
Founded After 40: How to Start a Business When You Haven't Got Time to Waste by Glenda Shawley

Founded After 40 (2017) examines the opportunities and challenges that present themselves to the later-life entrepreneur. Packed with practical advice and illuminating examples, these blinks are an essential guide to starting a thriving business at any age. 

  • Mid-lifers seeking new horizons
  • New entrepreneurs looking for advice
  • Small-business owners wanting a fresh perspective

Glenda Shawley has been a successful small-business owner for over two decades. As a fully accredited business advisor, Shawley specializes in helping new businesses get up and running, and has worked with a wide range of ventures, including web designers, alternative medicine therapists, and home-based solo entrepreneurs. 

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Founded After 40

How to Start a Business When You Haven't Got Time to Waste

By Glenda Shawley
  • Read in 13 minutes
  • Audio & text available
  • Contains 8 key ideas
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Founded After 40: How to Start a Business When You Haven't Got Time to Waste by Glenda Shawley
Synopsis

Founded After 40 (2017) examines the opportunities and challenges that present themselves to the later-life entrepreneur. Packed with practical advice and illuminating examples, these blinks are an essential guide to starting a thriving business at any age. 

Key idea 1 of 8

You’ll never have a thriving business until you understand why you’re in business. 

In 1992, the author, business consultant Glenda Shawley, was making a decent income from freelancing, doing everything from helping people perfect their resumes to teaching and writing articles for trade magazines. But although Glenda was a freelancer, she hadn’t yet started her own business. Why was that? Well, it’s because she didn’t have a clear understanding of why she was doing things. 

Like many of us, Glenda wanted to start her own business for a couple of simple reasons: she needed to provide for her family financially, and she also wanted more than just family activities in her life. While perfectly valid, this why wasn’t a good foundation for her business. 

In addition to liking your products and your prices, customers will patronize your business rather than your competitors’ because they feel they share your why. Glenda wanted to provide for her family, but why would this matter to her potential customers, or inspire them to support her? 

Consider a physiotherapist, for example, whose why is enabling her clients to live lives free of pain. It’s a motivation that her potential clients will share, and this shared goal will encourage them to see her over other physiotherapists motivated solely by profit. 

The right why will also give you a clearer idea of which work to say yes to. With her concise and effective why in mind, our physiotherapist knows exactly which work suits her and which would be better off in the hands of someone else. That means that this will be clear to others, too, and those in her network, from health professionals to friends, will know exactly which clients they should send her way.

Glenda, on the other hand, had no clear motivation beyond money, so she found herself taking on any work that paid well. This was exhausting – and confusing, too. People in her professional network struggled to understand exactly what it was that she did, and had little idea what sort of clients or work they should refer to her. Understanding this problem helped Glenda get specific, and her why is now to help individuals launch their own businesses. 

To find the why that’s right for you, try to uncover what you’re passionate about, or what your unique strengths are. People often try to answer these questions alone, but it can also be helpful to get input from your friends and family; your core attributes are often such an integral part of you that you stop seeing them, but they usually stay visible to those who know you well. 

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