As an entrepreneur-to-be, you have probably been asking yourself the same question revolving around money. Is money the most important thing in business?
To be sincere, it is not. But having money pays you the bills and gives you freedom not just to have holidays, but also to evolve your business. To take things to a whole other level. Without money, you won’t even be able to start a business, let alone build up and develop what you already have in your hands.
Invest in what you know
A lot of people try to invest in something that seems like rather interesting and exciting. You have probably heard about some new idea that works in theory. In your head. But you are having troubles of realizing it. Then why bother doing it in the first place?
Trying to realize an idea that works just in theory is not what you need as a newbie entrepreneur. You should stick to things you already know and understand. And afterwards, you can develop it to something even bigger, or start a new project once you already have a good base for the things that are about to come.
Make long term goals
One of the most important things to grasp is that you should make long term goals and stick to them. Every entrepreneur will confirm you that. So will Casper Ravn-Sørensen as well:
When I came to Copenhagen, I had no network, job or an accommodation I could afford. I had to start from the scratch to build up my dream, even if this meant to miss many of the joys and freedom that other guys my age took for granted.
But I was strongly motivated to invest all my effort, time and ambition into building up successful businesses. It didn’t happen out of the blue. I had to work and give up a lot, especially in the beginning. I saw an opportunity that made me feel motivated, determined and curious, so I just jumped in. The path I chose was risky but it felt right for me, and I knew I am the only one that can truly make a difference in my life.
I was dreaming big and was very excited to get my own business. When I first started I was very determined and confident that I will succeed as an entrepreneur, and eventually become a mentor for other entrepreneurs. The most important thing in the whole process is sticking to the long-term goal one has and not giving up when you encounter the boundaries or a rocky road ahead. You are yet to experience everything.
But where does your income come from?
You should be ready to multitask in the beginning and to do a lot of jobs at the same time. On that way, you will be able to get your business started and maybe finance it yourself right from the start. It is a good idea to loan some money from your friends and family. They can be your first investors that believe in you and your idea. Maybe they won’t even expect that you return the sum to them right away. For Casper Ravn-Sørensen it is important that he knows you tried your best in financing your idea before you asked for a loan from him.
I think it is awesome to talk to people that are passionate about their project. With people that maybe already have earned some money on it. These people know what the mission is. That we are going to scale the things up though the right network, knowledge and financing. They already know and show that together we can get the project moving to the next level. If you show me that you already have invested your own money and earned some money on the way, I am not going to take you for granted. It is utterly important to present yourself with some investment you already have had. If you come to me and I see that you haven’t invested the money from your piggy bank at least, why would I ever help you with my own money?
Casper Ravn-Sørensen is the perfect example of the multiple ways and sources of income he has. He is involved in various projects, in the bottom of the text, you can see them and continue reading (there are also some articles in the Danish language). But let us continue.
Quit being impulsive
If you are a young entrepreneur, you should be ready to make plans about your finances and stick to the schedule. It can be rather hard sometimes, giving up the spontaneity in your life. But it helps a lot in the beginning. Sometimes, not spending money on unnecessary things, means as much as earning money. And why is that?
It is because you should stick to the long-term goal, and not short-termed desires you haven’t even planned in the first place. It can be called a peer pressure thing, following the short-term needs and unplanned situations just because people say it would be fun to do it. Maybe it will, but considering your long-term plan, maybe it is better to give some things up today. For the sake of the better tomorrow.
Having a rainy day fund is exactly what you need. Considering Casper Ravn-Sørensen is Danish, we could also regard it as a typical Danish term (regnvejrsdag). Is it because of the weather forecast, you would ask?
Firstly, I think every entrepreneur, either Danish or not – must be strong, never giving up or being intimidated. It’s a hard world out there, and each entrepreneur should be prepared for that. Maybe the Danish weather makes entrepreneurs here stringer and always ready for rain J. I think you should dream big and have always-high expectations. I truly believe that Danish entrepreneurs do that.
Did you know that the best things in life are free? Enjoying the time with your family and friends doesn’t request any sort of cash investment. You can always spend your weekends in making a cosy atmosphere at home with your loved ones without spending a penny. And you will never feel like you are giving something up. In that way, you should just consider yourself as investing in your and their future.
Beware of the taxes
If you are a young entrepreneur-to-be, who have just finished University, you don’t know anything about taxes, right? But if you have experience in various working places? Naah, still nothing.
You should do a thorough research before you start investing money in anything. Just gather yourself with lawyers and people who know more than you do in this area. You will have to make a strict plan according to the taxes because you have to admit to yourself – you do not have a necessary knowledge for anything like that. And if you do not make a proper plan for taxes, your business will suffer. And no investor would risk lend money to a person that has a history of tax issues.
The reason behind the high taxes is of course the welfare system. Everyone likes feeling safe about tomorrow, especially when you have a family, right? Denmark offers that, to both Danish people and foreigners. While paying taxes, you invest in the society, and you, as a part of this society will benefit directly. The Danish welfare model provides opportunities for its citizens to pursue their happiness. But this system has to be built on a foundation, which are the taxes. And I think its fair.
Taking risks with money
Just go for it! It would be even better if you just have finished your studies. You have nothing to lose. Just to gain success, or, if you fail, a valuable experience for the future. There is no better moment than now and today. Organize yourself, make a proper schedule, and start working on your dreams. Just remember – you cannot please everyone, and there is nothing that can be sold and that can be helpful to all the people on the planet. Try to choose your own market whom you are talking to, and try and be the entrepreneur that solves market needs by playing your strengths. Don’t put all the focus on your weaknesses. Just let yourself be free and do whatever you want to because in your business you have the freedom to do so. Isn’t it all that you wanted in the first place?
Put a price on your product
And remember, when you first are to establish what you have, put a price on it! People will value it more if you know that what you do, has a price. You are not volunteering on your project, you are doing it to help, but gain the respect from the people who are to use your product.
In that way, you will get a good feedback on price and utility of it. Don’t be afraid to do it right from the start. We know it can be harsh but you have to face the reality. You have to face what people think about it right from the start, so that you would make the necessary changes right away. And in that way, you will avoid probable financial breakdown.
I would say that if Denmark is your country and you want to work here and build your idea here – go for it. You will find right people to work with, find investors, such as myself J and advantages that will help you start running. Of course, you will have to pay high taxes as already said, and be under control when it comes to your everyday life. You will have to follow the rules and follow what the guides tell you to follow. But this is your decision. Be wise. Inform yourself before starting and take everything into consideration. Good luck!