Starting Your Entrepreneurial Journey

Four Questions to Ask Yourself Before Starting Your Entrepreneurial Journey

Expert Investment Banker, Gabriel Patterson, of Winnipeg, Lists the Four Questions to Ask Yourself Before Starting Your Entrepreneurial Journey


Many people dream of starting their own business. For a variety of reasons, people often struggle to take the steps required to turn the idea in their head into a reality. Whether you are tired of your current job or you just feel like you're ready to start living your dream, it is important to ask yourself the right questions before you quit your current job to jump fully into pursuing your entrepreneurial dream. Gabriel Patterson, founder of Bethmann Lombard Bancorp in Toronto, shares four important questions, from personal experience, that he believes entrepreneurs should ask themselves.

Do I Want to Go in 100 Percent Right Now?

If you want to make your entrepreneurial dream a reality, you will likely have to eventually go in 100%. Unless you've saved up a lot of money or your spouse has a good job that he or she plans to keep, the reality is that you may not be able to jump in fully at first. You may need to run your business after work or on your days off. This will likely mean long hours and little time to rest. If possible, one solution could be to slowly cut back on your hours at your current job. You may also need to pull in friends and family members to help you make your dream a reality.

How Much Time and Money Am I Willing to Invest?

Unless you are independently wealthy, you will likely have to set a limit on how much money you can invest in starting your business. Even with bank loans or investments from family and friends, you may need to start your business with less money than you'd like. It is a good idea to evaluate if you really have enough money to start your business. At times, you may need to continue saving before you are ready to start your business.

It is also important to determine early on how much money you can afford to invest in starting and continuing your business. You don't want to end up bankrupt if things do not turn out as you planned.

Your time is not unlimited, and you must determine how much time you can logically dedicate to your business. For some people, that might mean limiting their efforts to a specific number of hours per day, week, or month. For others, that might mean saying that they are going to go all in for six months, a year, two years, or a specific amount of time. Then, if a certain thing hasn't happened by that point, you may need to reevaluate your business plan.

What's My Backup Plan?

This is perhaps the hardest question to ask yourself. No one wants to admit that their business may fail, but the reality is that about 20% of small businesses do not survive their first year, and by their fifth year, about half of small businesses have failed. While this does not mean that you should avoid making your dream company into a reality, it does mean that you should have some sort of backup plan. Will you be able to go back to your old job if things don't work out? Have you saved up enough money that if your business does not take off right away, you'll still be able to meet your family's basic needs? Are you willing to keep trying to keep your business alive even after it starts to fail, or are you going to cut your losses and move on when things aren't going so well?

What Am I Going to Do to Prevent My Company from Failing?

While you should have a backup plan, the goal is really to keep your company in business. The best way to do this is to anticipate the things that are most likely to cause it to fail. Some of the top reasons that businesses fail include a lack of need for the company's products or services, running out of cash, and not having the right team running the business. Ensuring that your product or service is needed, using your money wisely, and making sure that you have the right team on your side may help to prevent your business from failing. Before starting your business and in the early days of it, it's a good idea to make a list of the top reasons you feel like your business could struggle. Figure out how you are going to address those issues and make the appropriate adjustments to help your company succeed.

Good luck on your entrepreneurial journey. Owning your own business can be an exciting and fun endeavor. Just be sure that you are ready for this adventure before starting something that you are not ready to undertake.

About: Gabriel Patterson, of Winnipeg, is the creator and principal of Bethmann Lombard Bancorp and has directed the firm since 2005. As a masterful investment banker, Mr. Patterson has become an expert in securities, real estate, offshore tax planning, and Islamic finance. He serves clients on a global scale and has done business in Asia, Europe, and Latin America.


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8 Types Of People Fetuses Grow Into That 'Pro-Lifers' Don't Give 2.5 Shits About

It is easy to fight for the life of someone who isn't born, and then forget that you wanted them to be alive when you decide to hate their existence.


For those in support of the #AbortionBans happening all over the United States, please remember that the unborn will not always be a fetus — he or she may grow up to be just another person whose existence you don't support.

The fetus may grow up to be transgender — they may wear clothes you deem "not for them" and identify in a way you don't agree with, and their life will mean nothing to you when you call them a mentally unstable perv for trying to use the bathroom.

The fetus may grow up to be gay — they may find happiness and love in the arms of someone of the same gender, and their life will mean nothing to you when you call them "vile" and shield your children's eyes when they kiss their partner.

The fetus may grow up and go to school — to get shot by someone carrying a gun they should have never been able to acquire, and their life will mean nothing to you when your right to bear arms is on the line.

The fetus may be black — they may wear baggy pants and "look like a thug", and their life will mean nothing to you when you defend the police officer who had no reason to shoot.

The fetus may grow up to be a criminal — he might live on death row for a heinous crime, and his life will mean nothing to you when you fight for the use of lethal injection to end it.

The fetus may end up poor — living off of a minimum wage job and food stamps to survive, and their life will mean nothing to you when they ask for assistance and you call them a "freeloader" and refuse.

The fetus may end up addicted to drugs — an experimentation gone wrong that has led to a lifetime of getting high and their life will mean nothing to you when you see a report that they OD'd and you make a fuss about the availability of Narcan.

The fetus may one day need an abortion — from trauma or simply not being ready, and her life will mean nothing to you as you wave "murderer" and "God hates you" signs as she walks into the office for the procedure.

* * *

Do not tell me that you are pro-life when all of the above people could lose their lives in any way OUTSIDE of abortion and you wouldn't give 2.5 shits.

You fight for the baby to be born, but if he or she is gay or trans, you will berate them for who they are or not support them for who they love.

You fight for the baby to be born, but if he or she is poor or addicted, you will refuse the help they desperately need or consider their death a betterment of society.

You fight for the baby to be born, but when the used-to-be-classroom-of-fetuses is shot, you care more about your access to firearms than their lives.

It is easy to pretend you care about someone before they are even born, and easy to forget their birth was something you fought for when they are anything other than what you consider an ideal person.

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Robb Misso, Award-winning CEO, Describes 7 Great Techniques Small Business Owners Use to Hire Top Talent

Discovering premiere talent is no easy task, but it's one of the best investments you can make for the future of your business.


Hiring great employees is a difficult task, but hiring them for a small business or startup is far more difficult. Not only is your budget more limited, but you're also looking for a more specific kind of person. Working in a small business is inherently more difficult due to the flatter structure and greater responsibilities, so not only do you need someone skilled, you need people who can thrive under pressure. By focusing on these seven techniques detailed by Robb Misso, the CEO of DMS and a John C Maxwell Executive Council member, you can find the right people to hire for your company.

1. Focus on Brand Development from the Start

Attracting top talent for your small business is difficult because you have no branding at the start. Some people grow up thinking about working for global corporations because they have an expectation of how it would be to work for them, either due to a positive company culture, the impact they have on the world, or both. To get people to want to work for you, your business must have that same appeal. Develop a strong brand from the start and you'll make things easier for yourself.

2. Challenge Them

To get the best people, you have to offer the best projects. Top talent generally doesn't want to waste their time on something that bores them. Give them interesting projects, stimulate their minds and imagination, and they'll come in through the door.

3. Create a Small Business with Intent

Just making a small business to make money isn't enough, though it's a good start. You must have a greater goal in mind. You must have a vision. It's that vision that will drive people with passion to work for you. You must also learn how to present that vision and mission to people in the best possible way.

4. Go Out and Meet People Constantly

When you're looking to hire more people, the best thing to do is keep meeting new people. Go out to events and meet-ups and networking conferences and talk to people. Not only will you meet more potential employees, you'll also get to develop your brand and talk to potential partners and investors.

5. Look to Your Community

There's nothing like a consumer when it comes to criticism. No one is more critical than someone who bought your offering. Chances are, parts of your community are skilled workers. Why not hire them? They're already invested in your product, making them great potential hires. In some instances, such as positions for your sales force, their eagerness can make up for their lack of initial skill.

6. Look to Other Parts of the Globe

Your small business may have limited capital and reach, but the Internet has made it easier to find remote workers than ever before. While you won't have the comfort and intimacy of face-to-face interaction, they can give your small business skills you can't find locally. It can also end up being cheaper, especially if you just need them for specific tasks.

7. Create a Positive Workplace

A great workplace environment doesn't just help you keep employees, it'll help you get them. "When they first walk into your office for their interview, they should be met with smiling faces and people who are genuinely enjoying their work," stated Robb Misso. Nothing pushes away top talent like anger, frustration, and a general feeling of negativity. Developing a positive workplace is about having the right company culture, as well as having a comfortable physical space that people won't mind spending long hours in.

Hiring top talent for your small business is no easy task, but it's not impossible either. You just have to do it mindfully. You can't just send out fliers and expect great people to walk in. Develop your brand and your company culture from the start. Meet as many people as possible to expand your fishing waters. It's time-consuming, but consider it an investment in your small business's future.

About Robb Misso:

Robb Misso founded Dynamic Manufacturing Solutions in order to go about manufacturing differently. For 25 years, he has worked tirelessly to create a positive work culture and empower skilled workers both inside and outside the office. Robb Misso is also the recipient of Austin's "Recognize Good Award," which honors community-minded individuals for local charity work.

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