Posted: 2005-01-21 / Author: Stanley I. Mason
Your Best Resource Of FinanceYou have high-speed connections - you just don't know it!
Because we are living in an electronic age, you immediately think of computer modems and electronics when I say you have "high speed connections," but I am talking about your connections for raising money, creating partners, building your business - or whatever else you need to do. You are your best resource!
One of the biggest issues for entrepreneurs is raising funds to get to the next level in whatever they are involved in, be it product development or moving their business along. No one thinks they can raise funds. They think it's up to other people to do that. They don't feel they have the right connections. I think they do.
Practically every day someone with an idea for a product will approach me asking if I will back their idea for a share of the eventual profits. It would not be prudent of me to do that in every case and certainly would not have been profitable either.
I want you to learn that you have your own resources even if you don't feel that way yet. I think it's amazing how many people right in your own neighborhood, or in your family, can and will help!
You need to do the asking and have a plan ready for what kind of money you want - a loan or an investment - and how you will either pay it back if it's a loan or secure it if you're looking for investment.
A way that family and friends may help is with introductions to others. Maybe your parents don't have much money to lend but suppose they know someone whose son or daughter has a company synergistic with yours that would be a great fit either as a strategic partner or as an investor in your company.
Perhaps someone who works at your company, or at a friend's company, knows of a person willing to help you either now or in the future. Don't overlook these valuable sources.
Of course there are venture capital firms looking for companies that are developing new business strategies and products, and people you know might have an "in" with someone at a company that could help you. They might be able to get you invitations to luncheons and relevant meetings to create networking opportunities.
Networking is important. You should network with everyone around the field in which you are working. But remember that what is most important to you might be far down on the list of potential investors. They may not realize the urgency of your situation. Keep calling to follow up but try not to be annoying. Just stay focused on your goal.
Even if you don't feel you have what it takes, you can surprise yourself. You can be a fundraiser or a salesperson - and a successful entrepreneur - if you believe!