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Making the Mental Shift to Retail

By Richard Parker: President of The Resource Center for A Retail Business™ and author of How To Buy A Good Retail Business At A Great Price©

A few years ago, I was urging a man I know to buy a store. For the purposes of this story, let’s call him Joe. Now, Joe had just been laid off by a company where he had worked for nearly two decades. He had terrific business experience and knowledge. Better yet, we had found a small selection of stores for sale that seemed to be just what he wanted - art gallery/frame stores in upscale towns. Joe was an art collector himself, and they were just the kind of business that he said he wanted.

I kept urging Joe to go look at the stores, to speak with the brokers who represented them, and to meet with the Sellers. I urged. I cajoled. Joe said he would take those first steps, but he never did. Week after week went by. Finally, I pushed a little harder and asked Joe why he was not doing anything.

“How am I going to tell my friends that I am buying a STORE?” Joe asked me. He was barely able to conceal his anguish over the idea.

And I could see what a problem it was for Joe, despite the fact that buying a frame store/gallery was probably the best idea that he ever had. He simply couldn’t imagine how he was going to explain his decision to the people who still worked in his old, nine-to-five world.  In his upside-down thinking, it seemed like a better idea to jump around from job interview to job interview, trying to recreate the same kind of dead-ended job that he had just left.

A lot of people have unspoken fears that are similar to Joe’s. Just as they are about to control of their own destiny, they hold back, because they are unable to let go of their old identities. They sabotage their own future. And even though I am not a psychologist or self-help author, I’d like to make the following suggestions:

First, do a balance sheet of the good and bad things about owning a store of your own. When you buy a store, you’ll soon be enjoying a flexible lifestyle. You’ll be your own boss. You’ll enjoy all the challenges and rewards of running a business of your own. You’ll be able to make your mark on the world by helping customers, a community, your family and yourself too. On the negative side, what is there really? Long hours? Hard work? That’s nothing!. So do your own balance sheet. It will show you clearly that the wisest move you can make is to buy a store of your own.

Second, concentrate on the people who mean the most to you. When you buy a store, you can provide a stable, good stream of income for your family. You can spend more time with them, because you will be able to control your own schedule. So why are you afraid that you might run into a former work colleague of yours and have her fail to understand why you bought a business of your own? Who is more important to you, your spouse and family, or some outsider who you do not even know very well? And let me share yet another reality with you – those conversations with disapproving former colleagues and friends are not going to happen in the first place. They are just imaginary phantoms that arose from your fear of change. (Sorry, maybe I did sound like a self-help author in that statement!) One last thing: the reason why other people criticize or discourage your move to being your own business is strictly because they don’t have the guts, brains, or skills to do it themselves.

Third, people are going to admire and envy you. You took control of your own life, time, income and destiny! If people don’t admire you for that – well, they must be missing something.  Or maybe they are just envious. Either way, they are people you want to avoid.

Fourth, enjoy being a pioneer. Yes, you might be doing something different from what all your old colleagues are doing. (Like waiting around to be fired.) Breaking new ground is always a little scary. But mostly, it’s exciting, isn’t it?  Taking charge of your own destiny, and being properly rewarded for your effort always is.

If you are ready to make the move to owning a retail enterprise – and controlling your own future too – you will want to get a copy of my new guide, How To Buy A Good Retail Business At A Great Price©. 

This article represents a fraction of what you’ll learn in How To Buy A Good Retail Business At A Great Price© - the most widely used reference resource and strategy guide for anyone thinking about buying a retail store. Read a detailed listing of what you'll learn.

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