In today’s segment of the Atlanta Small Business Show, Jim Fitzpatrick speaks to Jim Beach, founder of School for Startups and emcee of the Gwinett Small Business Summit luncheon hosted by the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce, to discuss the most important things to keep in mind when launching your startup.
Jim Fitzpatrick: Welcome to the Atlanta Small Business Show, Jim.
Jim Beach: Thank you for having me. It’s a pleasure to be here.
Jim Fitzpatrick: You did a phenomenal job up there.
Jim Beach: Thank you. I appreciate that.
Jim Fitzpatrick: We were very entertained by some of your jokes in between, and I know you’ve done this before, right?
Jim Beach: Yeah. I have a staff of 23 joke writers that follow me around at all times.
Jim Fitzpatrick: That’s right. That’s right. You should have your own late night show, right?
Jim Beach: Yes, exactly.
Jim Fitzpatrick: Talk to us a little bit about the role that the Gwinnett Chamber plays in smalls businesses here in this area.
Jim Beach: I think that this is one of the most important chambers in our area. We have such a diverse group of chambers here throughout the what is it? 23 metropolitan counties. This chamber has done a great job of capturing the essence of the businesses that are here locally, and I think they’re providing a great resource just like what they’ve done today.
Jim Fitzpatrick: You are all in on small businesses. If you had a few pieces of advice to people that are listening to you right now about starting a small business, what would that be?
Jim Beach: Cash flow, cash flow, cash flow. Focus on money in the bank. You should do nothing other than concern yourself with how am I going to make payroll two months from now, and do I have enough money for a six-month run if I don’t have any income? My number one advice in that situation is go talk to your employees. Maybe one of them has got a great idea. Maybe one of them heard some gossip that could turn into new business for you, or maybe one of them heard, “Our client said that they could pay us, but we hadn’t billed them yet.” Maybe your team could help.
Jim Fitzpatrick: Yeah, sure. At least bring them into the fold so they know and they understand-
Jim Beach: The more you’re a team, a true team, the better off you’re going to function.
Jim Fitzpatrick: You’ll often find that on that team there’s going to be some key individuals who can say, “Hey, I know who I can call over at that company. I know the bill’s been sitting over there for 60 days but I think I can get that paid today. Would that help that scenario?” Right?
Jim Beach: Sure, and if I had had a place that had been sitting on my bill for 60 days, I’d probably go there, walk into the office-
Jim Fitzpatrick: Find out what’s going on.
Jim Beach: … and just sit there and say, “Hey, I came to get my check. I thought you all might have it today.”
Jim Fitzpatrick: That’s right. That’s a good idea.
Jim Beach: “Oh, you don’t?”
Jim Fitzpatrick: Right, when will it be here.
Jim Beach: “I can wait. I can wait an hour until your CFO gets here to write the check.”
Jim Fitzpatrick: That’s right. You’re exactly right. The name of your company, School for Startups. Where can people that are listening learn more about that and tune into your shows?
Jim Beach: School for Startups is three different things. We have a book from McGraw-Hill that tells some great entrepreneurial stories and has some great entrepreneurial advice. Then, they can go to SchoolforStartupsRadio.Com to hear our daily radio show, where we interview the top thought leaders and famous entrepreneurs, billionaires. We’re getting some good guests.
Jim Fitzpatrick: That’s pretty cool.
Jim Beach: Yeah, we try to have one billionaire a week. That’s our goal.
Jim Fitzpatrick: One billionaire a week?
Jim Beach: Yeah.
Jim Fitzpatrick: Wow.
Jim Beach: We usually do.
Jim Fitzpatrick: Yeah, there was a time not long ago that it was hard to find a billionaire and now, everybody’s a billionaire, right?
Jim Beach: Now there’s 6,000 of them.
Jim Fitzpatrick: 6,000 billionaires?
Jim Beach: Yes.
Jim Fitzpatrick: My gosh. That’s incredible. Jim, I want to thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy schedule and joining us on ASBN.
Jim Beach: Thank you.
Jim Fitzpatrick: We very much appreciate it.
Jim Beach: My pleasure. Thanks a lot.
Jim Fitzpatrick: Great.