This month I’d like to talk to you about how I got into business.
My wife and I did a road trip five years ago, which led us to a wonderful vacation for an entire year. We crisscrossed the country, travelling from Ottawa to Halifax and headed out to Vancouver. A family friend invited us to stay on the Island for a brief time.
We decided that if we were going to make the trip, we needed to go and stay for several weeks, if not several months. After residing in the area for a year, we decided to make Sooke our home.
When I finally decided to enter business, I went to the Sooke Region Chamber of Commerce to get information on structuring my business in B.C.
Through the information, I was able to locate the lawyers who incorporated my business, bookkeepers that aided me with my accounting, lettering on the truck and office supplies, all local and all appreciated by me in making my job easier and more profitable.
The contacts that I’ve made in the last four years of business have been very crucial in the success of my company. The lessons I received from others, including business owners, have led me away from problem areas in my trade and guided me on best business practices for the area.
I have many business friends who I also consider mentors in the business community that aided me in being successful. I feel there is a lot to be learned from the existing business community leaders, and harnessing that knowledge for the future so we can all become the heartbeat of the District of Sooke.
For any new business owner, the fear of failure is quite real, and the stakes are quite high when starting, investing in, and putting your life savings towards your visions and your dreams. This is a lot of pressure for any one person.
To take some of that pressure off your shoulders, it’s great to have another business “ear” that can take an objective view of your situation and give you the proper guidance to resolve it.
The reason why I believe in talking it out with another business owner is that we as businesspeople do get tunnel vision and we usually forget to look at the big picture. We at the Chamber open our doors to all businesses and try to help other entrepreneurs achieve their big picture.
Mike Menard is president of the Sooke Region Chamber of Commerce.