But it’s worth a million bucks! When it comes to buying or starting your own business, an opportunity must be right for you regardless of what someone says its worth or claims it is earning. Imagine a business providing an owner over $1,000,000 per year that has been around for 20 successful years. It has a great price with financing! You could leverage your assets and come up with the down payment. Interested? Not if the business is a brain surgery center and the seller is a retiring brain surgeon (unless you are a brain surgeon). Value is relative.
Passion is not a on the P & L. One factor often dismissed by investors and financial evaluators is passion. There is no line item on the Balance Sheet or Profit and Loss Statement for passion and it is very difficult to assign a value to passion. However, finding something you will be passionate about may be the most important factor you will consider.
The Assessment Test said this was the perfect business. Holly S. came to our office looking to sell her business. Three years earlier, she had been looking for a business to call her own and met with a franchise consultant. Holly took a DISC assessment test and after reviewing her background in accounting (she was a CPA) and strategic business planning, it seemed she would make a great Business Coach. She bought one of the most well known business coaching franchises. But three years later Holly was still not making the money she needed to get by on and had come to hate her business.
Holly came to realize that a key part of running her franchise was business development. For her that meant selling, and that meant getting lots of rejection, and needing to be patient with potential clients who kept putting her off. She knew there were lots of business owners who needed what she had to offer, but she had to keep knocking on doors, and continually defending the fact that her expertise could help the business owner she met.
Holly was passionate about helping people and solving problems but had no passion for winning over new customers. She thought about taking classes on sales and business development but she was not interested. And she just did not have the cash reserves to hire a sales person.
What does neuroscience have to do with becoming a business owner? Stress activates our sympathetic nervous system (SNS), which releases hormones like cortisol and epinephrine. We are designed to respond to stress so that we can react quickly and survive. But these hormones have negative effects and interfere with health, creativity, clear thinking and team building. Holly faced stress frequently because so much of her responsibilities required the business development activities that made her uncomfortable. And she had to develop business before she could do the things she loved like helping business owners get better.
When we work on things we are passionate about we are more likely to activate our parasympathetic nervous system (PSNS). The PSNS activates the hormone that lowers our blood pressure and strengthens our immune system. When we are doing the things we are passionate about, we are more likely to enter that zone where we actually feel renewed by what we do. Our leadership skills become more effective and we are better able to face inevitable stress. Our brains receive fewer chemicals like cortisol and we tend to be more creative problem solvers.
Find a business you can be passionate about. You might find your passion driver in the industry itself (you may love sports, or accounting, or music) but when considering getting your own business or even taking a new job, carefully look at how you will spend the bulk of your time. Are you passionate about dealing with people, or writing, or programming? Holly loved working with clients but really hated recruiting them and selling to them. Furthermore, Holly did not want to learn how to become a better sales person. It was outside here realm of passion.
Lots of jobs, franchises, and business look appealing from the outside especially when the marketers talk about how much money can be made. But it is essential that you fully understand how you will spend the bulk of your time. You can learn almost anything if you have the desire and the passion. But it is tough to face the challenges and be competitive in the marketplace when you just don’t have that inner spark.
We tell our business buying clients to buy based on potential, but pay based on performance. A significant part of business potential is connected to the owner’s passion. Remember that value is relative and passion is not factored in the financials. Passion is one of the most important factors you can bring to a business. Discover your passions and your dreams, and then turn your dreams into legacies.