Reply
Go Back   TexasBowhunter.com Community Discussion Forums > Topics > Around the Campfire
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-12-2019, 11:54 AM   #1
miket
Pope & Young
 
miket's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Plantersville
Hunt In: Grimes County, Victoria
Default Business Owners/Entrepreneurs Thread. Your story?

Thought it would be interesting to hear yalls stories. I would like to hear how/why you got started. What was your motivation. I would like to hear everyones story, but specifically from those that started and built a business yourself ( or with partner etc ).

Any words of wisdom or experience? Lesson learned? Regrets? Failures? Successes?

Anything else you want to post relative to running or owning a business, this is your chance, I want to hear it.
miket is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 12:01 PM   #2
JLivi1224
Ten Point
 
JLivi1224's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: Mid County
Hunt In: Public
Default

In
JLivi1224 is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 12:19 PM   #3
Trevor73402
Eight Point
 
Trevor73402's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Southern OK
Default

I’m in the process of starting. I won’t lie, it scares me. I’m about to spend $130K on equipment and a trailer. I can always sell out of it later, but it’s still stressful to me.
Trevor73402 is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 12:35 PM   #4
miket
Pope & Young
 
miket's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Plantersville
Hunt In: Grimes County, Victoria
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trevor73402 View Post
Iím in the process of starting. I wonít lie, it scares me. Iím about to spend $130K on equipment and a trailer. I can always sell out of it later, but itís still stressful to me.
Absolutely! I know the feeling. My first piece if eqpt was $35k and taking that step was.....well, scary!
miket is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 12:38 PM   #5
jjaimes
Ten Point
 
jjaimes's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Beaumont,TX
Hunt In: East Texas
Default

In!
jjaimes is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 12:40 PM   #6
yotethumper
Eight Point
 
yotethumper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Houston
Hunt In: Colorado County
Default

In.
yotethumper is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 12:46 PM   #7
dclifton
Pope & Young
 
dclifton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Lindale Tx
Hunt In: Lindale Tx, Crowell Tx, pearsall Tx
Default

My one and only biggest problem is employees within our family business. 35+ employees

If i was to start something new i would make it something that would cap out with a handful of employees. By that i mean something that could be ran and operated efficiently with 3-4 people max.

At the end of the day, money, supplies etc is nothing. Employees are 80+% of our stress and problems.
dclifton is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 01:00 PM   #8
CEO
Ten Point
 
CEO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: The Woodlands, TX
Default

Neither myself or my old man liked the corporate world and that's putting it lightly. We discussed different business options for a few years seriously and when he left we were both working for the same company. He called me one afternoon and said he was at Henson getting a new truck and was dropping his company vehicle off the next morning. Wanted me to know in case people started asking questions. He had been with the company almost 25 years, last 20 or so fairly high up in the corporation. He started the new company the next day and I joined him a year later.

No more useless meetings or two hour conference calls where half the content is one manager sucking up to the one above him.

More than dislike of working for big companies is wanting to build something. You only live once and I didn't want to feel like I gave it less than my all.

My main piece of advice is make sure your significant other is on board. We made about $500 total the first 18 months the company was open. If you don't have some money saved up or a spouse that helps it will be tough. Even now it drives my wife crazy that my income goes up and down.
CEO is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 01:02 PM   #9
jjaimes
Ten Point
 
jjaimes's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Beaumont,TX
Hunt In: East Texas
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by CEO View Post
Neither myself or my old man liked the corporate world and that's putting it lightly. We discussed different business options for a few years seriously and when he left we were both working for the same company. He called me one afternoon and said he was at Henson getting a new truck and was dropping his company vehicle off the next morning. Wanted me to know in case people started asking questions. He had been with the company almost 25 years, last 20 or so fairly high up in the corporation. He started the new company the next day and I joined him a year later.

No more useless meetings or two hour conference calls where half the content is one manager sucking up to the one above him.

More than dislike of working for big companies is wanting to build something. You only live once and I didn't want to feel like I gave it less than my all.

My main piece of advice is make sure your significant other is on board. We made about $500 total the first 18 months the company was open. If you don't have some money saved up or a spouse that helps it will be tough. Even now it drives my wife crazy that my income goes up and down.
What kind of business did you guys open if you don't mind me asking?
jjaimes is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 01:07 PM   #10
CEO
Ten Point
 
CEO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: The Woodlands, TX
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jjaimes View Post
What kind of business did you guys open if you don't mind me asking?
Equipment Rentals and Sales. General construction and oilfield.
CEO is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 01:14 PM   #11
Charles
Pope & Young
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Default

Started mine in 1992.

I agree with the employee statement above ^^^^. That was my biggest challenge when I had several employees. Thankfully I down sized years ago and don't have to worry to much about employee issues anymore.

Keep debt low and positive cash flow high and you will make it, even in a down turn market. I would also do something that generates monthly reoccurring revenue.
Charles is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 01:17 PM   #12
MAP
Eight Point
 
MAP's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Corpus
Hunt In: Live Oak, Jim Wells, Dimmit Counties
Default

Things that use to scare me are everyday non issues now, you'll learn that pretty quick

Buy used equipment when you can. A lot of people, especially in the oilfield, think they need to buy brand new pickups and equipment as the first thing when they start. I knew a group of people who got a $250,000 bank loan and went and financed 4 brand new pickups 2 days later for their company. About 3 years later I bought some of their equipment when they filed bankruptcy.

Hire good people

Don't have to many people from the same family working for you

Know how to work every piece of equipment and know how to do everything that your company offers

Don't ever be in the position where an employee can hold you hostage, meaning don't ever get in a position where you think "yeah I need to fire him, but he is the only one that can work that machine"...… this comes up all the time with companies, I've experienced it several times. As soon as I get the gut filling, I start thinking of other options and lay out a plan in my head. When I have a serious talk with a worker, I have ever intention of personally staying there and finishing the job if they don't like what I say or want to quite then.

Keep tabs on your money, use different accounts if you need to. If you have a good amount flowing in, its easy for a good amount to start flowing out if you don't restrict it intentionally. One of the best things I did was cancel my debit card from my business account, now the only time money comes out of it is if I personally write a check. Every 2 weeks I go online and move money over to another account that has a debit card, and that's what I use to buy what I need for work.

Stay out of debit as long as possible, I still don't own a credit card personally or on any business

My motivation for being self employed, is land and the thought of owning as much as I can. Also when I'm an old man I'd like to leave behind something that I created and hopefully will still be in business. I'd hate to live and not leave behind proof that I existed.

The best thing about being self employed is not knowing how much your going to make this year, the worst part about being self employed is not knowing how much your going to make this year.

Last edited by MAP; 07-12-2019 at 01:28 PM.
MAP is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 01:20 PM   #13
Huntingfool
Six Point
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Default

I was a high school coach and English teacher from age 22 to 27. Had our second child and I was going to make $11,900 that year (1979). We were starving on that salary so I decided to make a change.

Moved to Georgetown and started my insurance agency in 1980 (doing employee benefits, investments, life and health only). I had zero customers and knew no one in town other than my wife's family.

I immediately became involved in the community in a number of ways and worked and hustled my rear off. That was now 40 years ago and i am still rolling - for those 40 years I have had just one employee for the first of those 28 years. She retired so I hired another assistant who has been with me the past 12 years.

Was the best decision I ever made - I am my own boss, come and go when I want, and made a serious income over all those years.

Yes it was scary as heck when I left a salaried job and was on commissions only but I had confidence in myself. I am now writing business on some of my long time client's grand kids which is pretty cool. I could retire today but still enjoy what it do so it has been a blessing.

Last edited by Huntingfool; 07-12-2019 at 01:47 PM.
Huntingfool is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 01:40 PM   #14
rjtkdplus
Pope & Young
 
rjtkdplus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Lockhart
Hunt In: Everywhere I can
Default

My wife and got married in February 1991. In November 1992 we moved from Florida to Austin with a $15000 loan co signed by my Dad and a few credit cards. We opened a Martial Arts school on Brodie lane. We experienced amazing success over the years, opening 3 other locations and having 6 of my students open locations in Austin, Phoenix and Colorado Springs. As others have said staffing is the most difficult part of the business. We sold 3 locations and I still put in 40 hours a week most of the time at my location on Brodie lane because I still enjoy teaching and training. After being self employed for so long, I’d say the best part is the freedom to do what you want when you want. The worst part is the stress to make the business succeed because if I don’t no one else will.
rjtkdplus is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 01:56 PM   #15
Collier
Four Point
 
Collier's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Bertram
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by dclifton View Post
My one and only biggest problem is employees within our family business. 35+ employees

If i was to start something new i would make it something that would cap out with a handful of employees. By that i mean something that could be ran and operated efficiently with 3-4 people max.

At the end of the day, money, supplies etc is nothing. Employees are 80+% of our stress and problems.
Exactly, the next venture will be max 3 employees, if that many.
Collier is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 02:26 PM   #16
hooligan
Pope & Young
 
hooligan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Fort Worth
Hunt In: Foard Co.
Default

In to learn
hooligan is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 02:30 PM   #17
Johnny Dangerr
Pope & Young
 
Johnny Dangerr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Houston
Hunt In: Mainly Guide Now
Default

My business is 30 years old. Found working for the man had a glass ceiling and I was never going to get rich no matter how much money I made them. Started with 3K in the bank and a newish truck.

Do not count, worry, freak out. Just do it and let us know how you are doing next year....
Johnny Dangerr is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 02:30 PM   #18
Jcjohnson
Ten Point
 
Jcjohnson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Evans, GA
Hunt In: Burke, Thompson, Lincolnton
Default

In cool thread!
Jcjohnson is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 02:32 PM   #19
TxSon1836
Six Point
 
TxSon1836's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: McKinney
Hunt In: Oklahoma- Public
Default

in to soak up some knowledge
TxSon1836 is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 02:36 PM   #20
Efren
Ten Point
 
Efren's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: San Antonio, TX
Hunt In: Anywhere I can
Default

In. I would like to open a storage unit facility if anyone has any tips besides location, location, location.
Efren is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 02:49 PM   #21
Passafist
Six Point
 
Passafist's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Houston
Hunt In: Palo Pinto County
Default

I know this will sound a bit cheesy BUT..... my wife got payed off at 52 years old, a little to young to really retire especially since I’m still working 40 plus hours. I ask her what she would like to do, I can pay all the bills just a little to help out (I was thinking part time) well she started a pet care business and wow was I skeptical. I now eat crow everyday for dinner because we make more than my regular job we make over 100,000 by boarding dogs and I can retire (with pension and insurance at 55) and I will be her helper
Passafist is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 03:24 PM   #22
tdwinklr
Ten Point
 
tdwinklr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Leonard, TX
Hunt In: N. Central and N. East TX
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Passafist View Post
I know this will sound a bit cheesy BUT..... my wife got payed off at 52 years old, a little to young to really retire especially since Iím still working 40 plus hours. I ask her what she would like to do, I can pay all the bills just a little to help out (I was thinking part time) well she started a pet care business and wow was I skeptical. I now eat crow everyday for dinner because we make more than my regular job we make over 100,000 by boarding dogs and I can retire (with pension and insurance at 55) and I will be her helper
Crow is good sometimes ... sounds like a nice outcome. Wish we would do something like that.
tdwinklr is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 03:29 PM   #23
hooligan
Pope & Young
 
hooligan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Fort Worth
Hunt In: Foard Co.
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Passafist View Post
I know this will sound a bit cheesy BUT..... my wife got payed off at 52 years old, a little to young to really retire especially since Iím still working 40 plus hours. I ask her what she would like to do, I can pay all the bills just a little to help out (I was thinking part time) well she started a pet care business and wow was I skeptical. I now eat crow everyday for dinner because we make more than my regular job we make over 100,000 by boarding dogs and I can retire (with pension and insurance at 55) and I will be her helper
When I was a freshman in college I worked for a doggy daycare and boarding facility in downtown Honolulu. After the first year I started wanting to learn more about the business and the owner (38yo woman) walked me through the books I was blown away.

Crow sounds like a good meal to have!
hooligan is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 03:35 PM   #24
CEO
Ten Point
 
CEO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: The Woodlands, TX
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by hooligan View Post
When I was a freshman in college I worked for a doggy daycare and boarding facility in downtown Honolulu. After the first year I started wanting to learn more about the business and the owner (38yo woman) walked me through the books I was blown away.

Crow sounds like a good meal to have!
If you can find something that pets or kids want/need you can make some serious coin. People lose their budgets when it comes to those two things.
CEO is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 03:39 PM   #25
hooligan
Pope & Young
 
hooligan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Fort Worth
Hunt In: Foard Co.
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by CEO View Post
If you can find something that pets or kids want/need you can make some serious coin. People lose their budgets when it comes to those two things.
We are working right now on something that we think kids ďneedĒ and just started laying everything out. Right now it looks like I either need about $30k in machines and tooling or a good patent attorney and to find manufacturing
hooligan is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 03:57 PM   #26
SFAbowhunter
Pope & Young
 
SFAbowhunter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Melissa, Texas
Hunt In: Choctaw Co. OK
Default

Here to listen.
SFAbowhunter is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 04:29 PM   #27
TxSpinner
Eight Point
 
TxSpinner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Hunt In: Grayson, Lamar and Hill County
Default

My wife and I have been in the corporate world since college. Long hours, severe lack of days off, and even more of a lack of respect. The money was great but we were both miserable. We made the decision to leave and I so badly, and still do, wanted to become a LEO. My wife just wasn't having it.

Now we are opening our own business and so far so good. It is terrifying to know how much money we've hap to put into it and how there really isn't a safety net. But truth be told most of the fear has dissipated as I realize bills will be paid and I don't feel the sickening feeling in my stomach I once felt when I got ready for work. We will never be millionaires, but we enjoy what we are doing.

If there is something you enjoy doing, or something that makes you feel accomplished, I say go for it. Making six figures a year wont necessarily make you happy, especially if you never get to see your wife or kids.
TxSpinner is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 05:34 PM   #28
RaginCagin
Ten Point
 
RaginCagin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Louisiana
Hunt In: Louisiana
Default

Was a production coordinator then a purchasing supervisor for 10 years over our US, Italian and Brazil accounts for a oilfield company. Good perks and good travels. When the oilfield slowed 5 years ago we had lay offs but i survived 3 of them but they moved me to be over our China and India accounts for castings. I was miserable and dreaded traveling there. Took me about a year to plan everything and present a business plan to numerous banks until one bit. I opened up a specialty meat market and deer processing place and also sold plate lunches and different sandwiches along with boudin and cracklins. I stayed in this location 3 years and moved to a larger town last year and now focus more on the restaurant side doing fried chicken & seafood along with a facility i built to still process deer and hogs. I went from 2 employees at my first location to 9 now. Employees are by far the hardest and most stressful part. It keeps you up at night and causes a lot of stress but i feel I am much happier and financially much more stable than I was 5 years ago working for a large company.

Last edited by RaginCagin; 07-12-2019 at 05:37 PM.
RaginCagin is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 05:37 PM   #29
sailor
Pope & Young
 
sailor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Texas
Hunt In: Texas
Default

I started, a beer store...ÖÖÖ..
Do I need to say, anything else......
sailor is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 06:11 PM   #30
austinRecurve
Ten Point
 
austinRecurve's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Hutto
Hunt In: Texas, Alaska
Default

In to learn.

I turned a 6 year hobby into a business in April. Easing in and still working my other job.

Last edited by austinRecurve; 07-12-2019 at 06:44 PM.
austinRecurve is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 06:22 PM   #31
curtintex
Pope & Young
 
curtintex's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Porter, TX
Hunt In: Trinity County
Default

In 1973, my dad started a construction company while working for the Houston Fire Dept. I was 6 months old. He left the FD to go full time when I was about 5 or so. I was always involved with summer jobs, weekend jobs, brake jobs, cylinder jobs, and lots and lots of shovel jobs. I left for A&M with him making me promise that I'd do something besides construction, but I knew that's all I wanted to do.

When I left college early, (he was soooo pizzed) I went to work for him and quickly realized that I just couldn't work for my dad. I was too immature and he was too demanding. I could work for him or we could have a great relationship, but not both. I left and went to work for a global pump and compressor company where I learned a lot about customer relations, employee relations and business in general. I did well there, but couldn't see myself working for someone else my whole life.

Three years later, it was 1998, I called my dad up one day and told him I wanted to come work "with" him. He said he couldn't afford to pay me what I was making. I told him to give me six months and he'd be able to pay me more than I'm making. I made it clear that I wasn't looking for a job, but a career that included a path to partnership. We agreed on terms that would let me earn 50% of the company over time. I'm assuming he thought it would be a long time, but it only took a few years. When I first came on, he had six employees, an old Case 580 backhoe, a DitchWitch trencher and old boring rig.... and he and mom lived a comfortable middle-income life.

Today, my Dad owns 2% of the company he started (my sister and I own the balance). We have 350+/- employees. We've spun off 8 other companies and sold four of those. My Dad still likes to work, so he manages a project or two in between cruises and vacations with my mom and their friends. He's an old construction hand and will probably drop dead on a job site, when he's in his 90s, and wouldn't want it any other way.

Starting and growing businesses excites me. I'm not afraid of measured risk and I've surrounded myself with people smarter than me. I've hired the best people I can find and I expected them to perform at a very high level. I've had growing pains, made bad decisions that cost money, hit home runs and I've struck out. I've bought other business and started and sold businesses and closed one down for lack of performance. I've had loans that would choke a mule and more than a few nervous bankers over the years, but we never considered anything beside paying what we owed...even when I once worried "how". I've learned lessons the hard way and made friends that I can't imagine life without. I've just never been afraid to fail, even when others doubted that I'd succeed. I've been broke as a joke and I've had money to spare and it's just never defined who I was. I love the competition. I love the challenge. I love the relationships and the camaraderie of business. Money is just a way to keep score.

I get a lot of credit for our growth, and my Dad would tell you (like he tells everyone else) that I'm responsible for it, but none of it would have ever been possible if my Dad didn't have the balls to hang out his own shingle, take his future into his own hands and decide to be his own boss. He gave me a good name, a good work ethic and most importantly he always believed in me...even when I'm sure he thought I'd lost my mind.

Funny this thread came up today....because I've recently had another idea baking.

Last edited by curtintex; 07-12-2019 at 06:26 PM.
curtintex is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 06:57 PM   #32
Mudslinger
Pope & Young
 
Mudslinger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Lubbock, TX
Hunt In: Kent Co., Stonewall Co., CO, Limpopo RSA
Default

Opened Hunter's Hdqrs & Archery Range in 1989 in Lubbock and had a 40 yard indoor range with a video system in the waning years. sold it after 10 years to an employee. Went into remodeling and construction until I got screwed by my business partner.

I will tell you this, everyone thinks that if you own your own business no matter what it is, you are wealthy, can take off whenever you want and you cannot tell them different!

With an Archery shop, look at how many mail order catalogue are available for mailing or over the internet where folks can buy merchandise the same price you can BEFORE you can put it in our shop! This does not include the overhead for profit you have to install to make a living!

Been there and done that!

Some old folks on this site can attest to my shop as they were in it. I tired to keep quality and the latest merchandise and at the time the longest indoor range in TX!

BUT, it almost ruined me on the sport of archery and bowhunting!
Mudslinger is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 07:38 PM   #33
Huntingfool
Six Point
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Default

I posted earlier about my 40 year journey. Seems to be a lot of interest in folks here who want to know about leaving a secure job and going out on their own.

For starters find something you are passionate about. Next be prepared to spend 60 plus hours a week in the early years. Must be willing to ask people for their business - if you are sincere and have a worthwhile product then nothing wrong with asking people to buy your product. If you are not wiling to do so then don't go into business for yourself.

The early years are tough but if you survive then the rewards will come. You live one life so if you really want to be independent and accumulate wealth then it takes balls to go out on your own. Not for the faint of heart.
Huntingfool is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 08:00 PM   #34
Jon B
Eight Point
 
Jon B's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Central Tx.
Hunt In: Central Tx and the Western States
Default

My hat is off to you guys....I'd love to have the stones to say screw it and walk away from the security of my LE job and rely on myself to get by. I can't really say I had it easy but we have made good decisions and I have done fairly well working for the man. I enjoy the security of getting a paycheck every couple weeks and someone else paying for our medical insurance.

We recently started a small business and it's making money but is no where near enough to support the daughter's education fund let alone try to feed one or both of us. Maybe someday.
Jon B is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 08:07 PM   #35
tradslam
Ten Point
 
tradslam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Frederick, Co
Hunt In: Co,Tx,Ne,Wy,Ok or where ever I draw a tag
Default

Just starting out, and growing pretty quick, buy and hold real estate, and small developments. If things keep going the way they are, ill be fulltime next year.
tradslam is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 09:56 PM   #36
Trevor73402
Eight Point
 
Trevor73402's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Southern OK
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by curtintex View Post
In 1973, my dad started a construction company while working for the Houston Fire Dept. I was 6 months old. He left the FD to go full time when I was about 5 or so. I was always involved with summer jobs, weekend jobs, brake jobs, cylinder jobs, and lots and lots of shovel jobs. I left for A&M with him making me promise that I'd do something besides construction, but I knew that's all I wanted to do.

When I left college early, (he was soooo pizzed) I went to work for him and quickly realized that I just couldn't work for my dad. I was too immature and he was too demanding. I could work for him or we could have a great relationship, but not both. I left and went to work for a global pump and compressor company where I learned a lot about customer relations, employee relations and business in general. I did well there, but couldn't see myself working for someone else my whole life.

Three years later, it was 1998, I called my dad up one day and told him I wanted to come work "with" him. He said he couldn't afford to pay me what I was making. I told him to give me six months and he'd be able to pay me more than I'm making. I made it clear that I wasn't looking for a job, but a career that included a path to partnership. We agreed on terms that would let me earn 50% of the company over time. I'm assuming he thought it would be a long time, but it only took a few years. When I first came on, he had six employees, an old Case 580 backhoe, a DitchWitch trencher and old boring rig.... and he and mom lived a comfortable middle-income life.

Today, my Dad owns 2% of the company he started (my sister and I own the balance). We have 350+/- employees. We've spun off 8 other companies and sold four of those. My Dad still likes to work, so he manages a project or two in between cruises and vacations with my mom and their friends. He's an old construction hand and will probably drop dead on a job site, when he's in his 90s, and wouldn't want it any other way.

Starting and growing businesses excites me. I'm not afraid of measured risk and I've surrounded myself with people smarter than me. I've hired the best people I can find and I expected them to perform at a very high level. I've had growing pains, made bad decisions that cost money, hit home runs and I've struck out. I've bought other business and started and sold businesses and closed one down for lack of performance. I've had loans that would choke a mule and more than a few nervous bankers over the years, but we never considered anything beside paying what we owed...even when I once worried "how". I've learned lessons the hard way and made friends that I can't imagine life without. I've just never been afraid to fail, even when others doubted that I'd succeed. I've been broke as a joke and I've had money to spare and it's just never defined who I was. I love the competition. I love the challenge. I love the relationships and the camaraderie of business. Money is just a way to keep score.

I get a lot of credit for our growth, and my Dad would tell you (like he tells everyone else) that I'm responsible for it, but none of it would have ever been possible if my Dad didn't have the balls to hang out his own shingle, take his future into his own hands and decide to be his own boss. He gave me a good name, a good work ethic and most importantly he always believed in me...even when I'm sure he thought I'd lost my mind.

Funny this thread came up today....because I've recently had another idea baking.
I enjoyed reading this. I hope I can have a fraction of the success that you have had.
Trevor73402 is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 10:17 PM   #37
curtintex
Pope & Young
 
curtintex's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Porter, TX
Hunt In: Trinity County
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trevor73402 View Post
I enjoyed reading this. I hope I can have a fraction of the success that you have had.
I've had plenty of failures too, and you have to be able to weather those. Take the blame for the failures and give credit to others for the successes. In my case, our success is a blessing from God. He's responsible for all of it.
curtintex is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 10:48 PM   #38
HogHunter34
Ten Point
 
HogHunter34's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Whitehouse, Tx
Hunt In: Anderson County
Default

Great thread. If I had the capital I would love to own a business manufacturing deer blinds (rotomolded) & sell to all you guys. I have the technical know how I just canít seem to find the capital
Other than that, I plan to semi-retire & contract myself either as a ISO auditor in chemicals/plastics or maybe a consultant
HogHunter34 is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-12-2019, 11:36 PM   #39
jtempleton
Eight Point
 
jtempleton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Bryan
Hunt In: Edwards and Robertson Counties
Default

I’m kinda crazy. I enjoy building things and tires. It’s a weird combination. Finally went out on a limb and set up my llc last year and made it official. I still have kept the security of a full time job teaching but have moved positions to allow more time for my business to grow. I pretty much work everyday of the week building Metal Buildings, tire sales/installs, trailer repair, shop fabrication and selling trailer parts out of a shop at the house. I started to get real busy lately and nervous about taking the leap of faith since I was raised to stick with security. It’s hard to fit everything in but I enjoy the work and making customers happy. Goal is to keep it a 3-4 employee business as others have stated. Big hurdle for me now is getting insurance since it is a mixture of business. I hope within the next couple of years I can put the teaching gig to the side and go full time.
jtempleton is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-13-2019, 06:12 AM   #40
miket
Pope & Young
 
miket's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Plantersville
Hunt In: Grimes County, Victoria
Default

Great stuff here, I appreciate it! I am experiencing much of what has been stated here. A few things I would like to ask.

Employee issues are a recurring theme here, as I expected, how/where is the balance? Or is there? Some have said they only want 3-4 but is that enough for you to just run the business and let them handle the work? Or at that number will you still have to labor with them? ( run the dozer, run the saw.or whatever ).

Did you hire your 2nd, 3rd etc after being so busy you couldnt keep up, or hire them then find the work to keep them busy?

Do you feel like you need to be a "people person" to be successful in business ( specifically a business that is skilled labor-of course you do in sales etc )?
miket is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-13-2019, 07:41 AM   #41
Radar
Ten Point
 
Radar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: old FEMA Trailer House
Hunt In: winder of old FEMA trailer house
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by miket View Post
Great stuff here, I appreciate it! I am experiencing much of what has been stated here. A few things I would like to ask.

Employee issues are a recurring theme here, as I expected, how/where is the balance? Or is there? Some have said they only want 3-4 but is that enough for you to just run the business and let them handle the work? Or at that number will you still have to labor with them? ( run the dozer, run the saw.or whatever ).

Did you hire your 2nd, 3rd etc after being so busy you couldnt keep up, or hire them then find the work to keep them busy?

Do you feel like you need to be a "people person" to be successful in business ( specifically a business that is skilled labor-of course you do in sales etc )?

Your gonna have to be a people person because you are representing your company and product. People will remember your for being a world class dik or a super nice guy that follows thru. Look at how many threads there is about Viking Archery on here.

BUT dont be afraid to fire a customer either, I have had to learn that the hard and expensive way. You are in business to make money, there is no time to deal with that guy who beats you up over price and is blowing your phone up whining. More than likely those types are slow payers or no payers. I aint got time for "No Pay Jose", I have no problem walking away and letting that "guy" bankrupt my competition.

I was also guilty of trying to help out a customer that I felt sorry for, I wasted a lot of money with the "down and out guys". Sometimes you just gotta walk away.

When I first started up I wanted every one's business and would do whatever I had to do to get it. Over the years I realized how much money I lost with that mentality and started weeding out companies and people. I deal with a lot of people every week, I still get frustrated at times.
Radar is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-13-2019, 08:37 AM   #42
Abcdj
Pope & Young
 
Abcdj's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: The Can & Brenham
Hunt In: Wilbarger county U.S.A.
Default

Impressive stories from you guys that took the leap of owning your company and being your own bosses! I have been in coaching for 35 years. Would like to retire buy a skid steer, small dump truck and trailer. Do small jobs like make driveways and such for folks. Would have to learn some skills.Just enjoy that kinda stuff. It's hard to get out of your own ruts and old habits. Yall are right about kids and pets. I have told my wife and oldest daughter they need to write kids books for years now. My youngest does dog sitting at her house two weekends a month as a second job and makes good money.
Abcdj is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-13-2019, 09:32 AM   #43
buckfan50
Six Point
 
buckfan50's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Magnolia, Texas
Hunt In: Montgomery County
Default My story

I guess you could say I got into this due to hunting. Four years ago both my sons harvested their first bucks. I wanted to do something special with the euros so I started searching and found a hydrographics page and purchased a kit to dip the skulls. After a couple of failed attempts we had some success and I really liked how cool the process was. I set myself up with homemade equipment and started doing it as a hobby. I have been a production manager for a very big paint manufacture for the past 17 years and we received notice over a year ago that the plant would be closing at the end of May 2019. In April I had posted a picture of a football helmet that I had dipped on a hydrographic forum page and was contacted by a guy to do a few helmets for him. That led to several other memorabilia collectors wanting work done including a very big dealer in Texas wanting more than 50 helmets a month. They get the helmets autographed by current and past NFL players and then resell the helmets. We formed an LLC early this month, got my fed tax number and set up a business account. We were fortunate that I was able to retire from the paint company and have our medical insurance come out of my pension and the severance package more than paid off every debit we had. I'm not making a killing but at 60 years old we will make enough to easily pay the bills to run our household and then some until I can hopefully retire at 65. Plus it's nice to be able to walk to my shop next to the house to work. I'm still very nervous about running my own business. Meeting with a CPA next week. Wish us luck! Here's a picture of one of our creations! Signed by DeAndre Hopkins.
Attached Images
 
buckfan50 is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-13-2019, 10:49 AM   #44
yaqui
Ten Point
 
yaqui's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Dallas
Hunt In: Eastland Co.
Default

Keep your overhead low, pay your taxes, don't burn any bridges, and work harder that everyone else. You will succeed.
yaqui is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-13-2019, 10:57 AM   #45
boh347
Pope & Young
 
boh347's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Knickerbocker, Texas
Hunt In: coke county, tx Nolan county, tx
Default

I worked for my dads drilling company as a rig welder and when the oil bust of 08 happened it took our business out. Had 13 drilling rigs and around 400 employees. At that time I Made friends with the equipment rental manager at Rsc next door and he said I should start contract hauling equipment. So, I bought a beater truck and have been doing it ever since.
https://m.facebook.com/profile.php?i...content_filter
https://wildbillsweldingandtrucking.com/

Last edited by boh347; 07-13-2019 at 10:59 AM.
boh347 is online now   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-13-2019, 05:30 PM   #46
miket
Pope & Young
 
miket's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Plantersville
Hunt In: Grimes County, Victoria
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Radar View Post
Your gonna have to be a people person because you are representing your company and product. People will remember your for being a world class dik or a super nice guy that follows thru. Look at how many threads there is about Viking Archery on here.

BUT dont be afraid to fire a customer either, I have had to learn that the hard and expensive way. You are in business to make money, there is no time to deal with that guy who beats you up over price and is blowing your phone up whining. More than likely those types are slow payers or no payers. I aint got time for "No Pay Jose", I have no problem walking away and letting that "guy" bankrupt my competition.

I was also guilty of trying to help out a customer that I felt sorry for, I wasted a lot of money with the "down and out guys". Sometimes you just gotta walk away.

When I first started up I wanted every one's business and would do whatever I had to do to get it. Over the years I realized how much money I lost with that mentality and started weeding out companies and people. I deal with a lot of people every week, I still get frustrated at times.
Roger that. I know being a jerk would be an issue, but know a lot of business is just because they "like" you. I dont think anyone ( well, nobody I deal with professionally ) thinks Im a jerk, but Im not a guy people particularly like.

I do have a hard time turning down work, even if its a "bad" job. I always hope it leads to a relationship that brings me more work. I have noticed that some will take advantage of you if you do the hard stuff. Seems like if you always bail em out and do the hot jobs due asap, some ONLY call you when they need it asap
miket is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-13-2019, 07:33 PM   #47
jds247
Ten Point
 
jds247's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Bridge city Texas
Hunt In: Jasper county newton county and sabine county
Default

I started framing houses with my dad when I was 12 or 13 years old.. over the years we did everything from framing to trim to concrete work. At 24 I was working for a mold remediation company making 20 bucks an hour . I did everything from bid the jobs to pick up the checks.. I decided if I could do it for them I could do it for myself.. I started out small doing work from realestate companies when they were trying to get houses ready to sell.. one thing led to another and I had a framing/ remodel crew and a 20 man concrete crew working for me full time.. my dad quit his job to run the remodel side.. after about 13 years finding legal non druggy employees got to be to hard.. my dad passed away and I didnt have the drive I once did. The stress weighed heavily on me and I was done..
I decided to take a job in operations at a plant.. no more phone calls or waiting on it to stop raining so I can work.
I now have a Great Pension, health care ,401k etc.
jds247 is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-13-2019, 07:57 PM   #48
friscopaint
Ten Point
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Collinsville
Default

We built, and run, a wedding venue. We have no employees other than wife and I and for some weddings we hire some high school kids to help. Took longer to grow than I expected but after 2 yrs in we are pretty well booked. Researched all other wedding venues we felt were competition and able to be less expensive than all of them and include a lot of items for couples to use that other venues nickel and dime them for. Many couples like dealing with the owners rather than paid staff like the corporate, or investment groups, have. Those managers don't really have skin in the game. A group is building one about 2 miles from us but for what they have spent on the land and building I think they will struggle, too many think you just build an venue and people. will throw money your way. Based on my estimates their monthly debt service on average is going to be $12,000 or more plus managers, yard staff, cleaning, etc.....which we do all our own as we live on property. Actually funny to see the looks on peoples faces when they realize we are the owners not hired help. Have had many photographers, planners, etc.....kind of turn their nose up at us and once we go home and clean up and return they say "oh, you're the owners?".....nice thing about it is we hear all sorts of comments about the venue when they think we just work there. I'm a fireman and wife raises horses at our place so we have the time and ability to handle things ourselves, if we had employees it would be cost prohibitive and a nightmare.

We don't get all the weddings that tour but a lot of them we would rather not have. One aspect that really gets old is tours that schedule then no show, no call, text, emails. We have also made many changes based on our experiences.
friscopaint is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-13-2019, 08:05 PM   #49
austinRecurve
Ten Point
 
austinRecurve's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Hutto
Hunt In: Texas, Alaska
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by buckfan50 View Post
I guess you could say I got into this due to hunting. Four years ago both my sons harvested their first bucks. I wanted to do something special with the euros so I started searching and found a hydrographics page and purchased a kit to dip the skulls. After a couple of failed attempts we had some success and I really liked how cool the process was. I set myself up with homemade equipment and started doing it as a hobby. I have been a production manager for a very big paint manufacture for the past 17 years and we received notice over a year ago that the plant would be closing at the end of May 2019. In April I had posted a picture of a football helmet that I had dipped on a hydrographic forum page and was contacted by a guy to do a few helmets for him. That led to several other memorabilia collectors wanting work done including a very big dealer in Texas wanting more than 50 helmets a month. They get the helmets autographed by current and past NFL players and then resell the helmets. We formed an LLC early this month, got my fed tax number and set up a business account. We were fortunate that I was able to retire from the paint company and have our medical insurance come out of my pension and the severance package more than paid off every debit we had. I'm not making a killing but at 60 years old we will make enough to easily pay the bills to run our household and then some until I can hopefully retire at 65. Plus it's nice to be able to walk to my shop next to the house to work. I'm still very nervous about running my own business. Meeting with a CPA next week. Wish us luck! Here's a picture of one of our creations! Signed by DeAndre Hopkins.
Pretty cool! I could see motorcycle guys wanting stuff like this on their helmets.
austinRecurve is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Old 07-13-2019, 11:19 PM   #50
Draco
Pope & Young
 
Draco's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Georgetown, Texas
Default

I started a side welding business in the middle eighties. My job at South Western Bell paid decent and my wife worked but I just wanted more and I love building things. The last several years that I worked for Bell, I actually made more welding part time. The part time actually was more than 40 hours a week as well. I retired from the career job at 50 and just kept on with the metal fab stuff and am trying to retire again at 69. I just bought 223 acres so I may just be retired now.

Two things that I went by in my business; do small things cheap or free. It's advertising in the finest sense, word of mouth and all that. When I lost money on a job or hardly made enough, I just called it the price of an education. It kept things from getting to me.
Draco is offline   Reply With Quote Back To The Top
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:34 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Copyright 1999-2012, TexasBowhunter.com