Spend Money To Make Money

You have to speculate to accumulate.

Business is all about taking risks. Smart business people understand that life is a risky business. A finite (but small) percentage of people slip as they get out of bed and bruise themselves on the floor. Does this mean that you shouldn’t get up? Of course not. The risk is small and the rewards are high…breakfast!

When you start a business, you are risking your time and probably your start-up financing. You are gambling that you will make enough profit to cover your money and your effort. Your business plan (You do have a business plan, don’t you?) shows you that your investment should pay off. The important word in the previous sentence is “should“. You are taking a risk, but it’s a calculated risk.

No matter what your business, you have at least one thing in common with every successful entrepreneur. You both have exactly 168 hours every week to sleep, work, and have a life. My observations, over 30 years of business, have shown me that the successful entrepreneur usually accomplishes a lot more in their work week than the average business person. They tend to work smarter, not harder.

Most business start-ups rely on the founder’s existing computer equipment. You probably have a one or two year old laptop, maybe with a 15″ screen. In fact, based on my analysis of my readers’ screen resolutions (courtesy of Google Analytics), over 80% of the people reading this blog in the last 30 days, almost certainly had screen sizes of 17″ or less. So what? Well, if you only work with small spreadsheets and one-page documents, and don’t use the web, then it doesn’t really matter. However, if you’re with the majority of business people, you are spending a lot of time scrolling both horizontally and vertically through your documents and web sites. If you use your computer for three hours a day, you could be wasting five or six minutes a day in additional scrolling due to your small(ish) screen.

Assuming that there’s one day a week, when you’re not using your computer (really?), that 5 minutes a day adds up to 26 hours a year in lost productivity. What is your time worth? At just $25 an hour, you could be wasting $650 a year. You can buy a 24″ monitor for around $200 and a keyboard, that is probably way better than your laptop’s keyboard, for about $50. So for an investment of $250, you could be saving $650 a year. That’s a pretty good return on your investment. Plus, you’ll have a more enjoyable computing experience AND give your local retailer a sales boost.

That sounds like a low-risk investment with a win/win/win solution. I hope you have a successful and prosperous 2012.