A successful entrepreneur shares her thoughts on business success and failure.

Posts published in the Goals category:

Financial Modeling: What Is It And Why Is It So Darned Important?

Financial model Ah, the financial side of your business. If this is the stuff that makes your eyes glaze over (and yet you’re an entrepreneur)…you’re the person I wrote this post for.

I know a lot of us aren’t big fans of doing the financials, and I understand why you feel that way–after all, it’s certainly more fun to build a product than it is to work on the freakin’ numbers.

By the time you’ve read this post, you’ll be able to do a financial model yourself (without hiring a crazy-expensive CFO!), and you’ll know the following:

  • How many sales you need every month to pay all your bills.
  • How to price your products so you don’t lose money on each sale.
  • When to hire your next employee (or when to quit your job)–based on the sales goals you set.
  • When you’re going to run out of cash (or, alternatively, how much cash you’ll be able to pay yourself every month without going broke.)
  • How much capital you need to raise (if any!)
  • How to quickly assess your business every month to ensure you’re meeting the goals you set for yourself–and how to know quickly if you’re in trouble, before it’s too late.

In summary, this is the blog post I wish I had 11 years ago when I was getting started in business. Let me state this unequivocally: Building a financial model has been paramount to the success of my business. However long it takes you to build a model (and it won’t take you too long if you follow the path I’ve outlined below), it’ll be worth it. It may even save your business from going bankrupt–or enable you to quit your job or hire your next employee more quickly.

Now let’s take a look at what a financial model is and how to set one up for your business… (more…)

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How to Build a Billion-Dollar Business

Build a Billion Dollar Business There are lots of posts online about how to make your first dollar, or even how to grow a modest side business. But there’s precious little information on how to build a billion-dollar company.

Before we get into the how, though, there’s something I want to address–and that’s why. Why would you want to build a billion-dollar business?

Even if you have decided you don’t want to build a business that large, I encourage you to read this anyway…it may very well change your perspective on how large you want your business to be.

Pushing Through the FUD

There’s a lot of FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt) around building large businesses. In particular, news media loves to hate on “workaholics”–people who seem consumed by their work. Reporters dish on divorces or family fallouts stemming from overworked parents or people who just can’t seem to disconnect from their smartphones.

So, the logical choice, if building a huge business causes you to be overworked and potentially lose your family, is to start a smaller business, right? One where you can work on the side to begin with and not over-tax yourself. One where you can still see your family. One where you don’t kill yourself for your business. It seems like a utopian ideal. But is it really possible? (more…)

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The Indescribable Anger

Acceptance Today I want to talk about something I haven’t mentioned on this blog. In fact, I rarely mention this in real life, either. But I have a feeling I’m not the only one with this problem–and I think it will do some good to finally speak about it openly.

Years ago, I started noticing I was in significant physical pain when I used the computer for more than a few hours at a time. I used to spend 10+ hours a day in front of a computer. Figuring it was probably just time I invested in some better chairs, I bought myself an Aeron chair (and later, a better desk.)

Except the pain didn’t stop. If anything, it got worse. (more…)

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My 30-Day No Email Trial: The Results

No email for 30 days In early June, I embarked on a radical experiment: I gave up email for 30 days. Here are my results…

When I started the trial, I felt completely overwhelmed by email, and I just wanted a way out. I was waking up every morning to an incessant barrage of PR people, sales letters, chain emails, people wanting me to write about their product, companies wanting me to promote them without compensation, and–generally–a bunch of junk. Not “spam”, really, because it was sent by real people (sadly.) But a ridiculous pile of useless crap that wasn’t easily filtered.

Since my email address is public, and my blog is popular, it seemed like every day I’d end up on some list that I didn’t ask to be on. People would sign my email address up for everything from political updates to PR posts about seemingly random companies sent from a “do not reply” address.

In short, my email inbox was a micro-Hell waiting for me every morning. (more…)

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The Riskiest, Most Radical 30-Day Trial I've Ever Attempted?

30-day trial Something has to change, because this is killing me. It’s taking over my life, and it’s slowly but surely sucking my soul away. And yet, getting rid of it may prove to be one of the most difficult feats I’ve ever attempted.

Before I tell you what it is, let me share with you a typical day in my life as of right now. I want to show you exactly what the hell is that I’m going through. (more…)

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I'm Erica Douglass.
After selling my online business at age 26 for over $1 million, I created this blog to help you grow your own business quickly.

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