Business Support Systems: The Stake


This blog post is a semi-continuation of the Money tree series posted in late July.

Please make reference to that post if you are to get a full picture of what I am discussing today.

There are certain business systems that are efficient in production and output, but they in their very nature face some serious challenges in standing on their own.

When starting up business, it is usually expected that a certain level  of reinvestment or recapitalization of the business will be necessary. It is critical to realize that sudden changes, or the natural progression of the business will require you to invest time, physical and financial resources into the business.

This may be due to the fact that, the business may expand much faster than what was expected, requiring a growth in the capital requirements of the business than what was originally foretasted.

The advantage of such things is that once a business is operational, there is a bit more substance to it and obtaining financing through external investment becomes much easier than when a plan is just on paper.

I have personally felt this pinch with one or two excellent plans that have been well researched but requiring a certain level of start up financing. Especially when you are  a new venturer and everyone else is looking through your portfolio seeking your prior achievements before they can surrender their finances into your hands.

But once a business is operating, even at a small scale, it bears testimony to what it is capable of, and income cases, through due diligence and cash reinvestment, minding cash flow management there is a very high chance that the business may even be able to recapitalize itself.

It may do this even through the acquired goodwill, that increase its value over and above the actual physical and financial asset value it has in its portfolio.

An example of a business system that may require extensive levels of recapitalisation that may take even decades to recover but will definitely be worth it is mining. Substantial amounts of assets have to be bought before production can commence. In cases such as oil rigging, billions may be invested at regular intervals even as the business itself is generating a sizable cash inflow.

However, care has to be taken that recapitalization does not become a perpetual occurrence. A good system is one that ensures that there comes a point when the business reaches maturity, and becomes stable enough to stand on its own and even provide a support base for other expansion plans of businesses in the portfolio of the owners.

Investment in other people’s businesses is also useful because as my mentor always says, “I am not  the smartest person in the world.”

Growth Dynamics (From seed to seedling to plant)


The following post arose from a conversation that I had with one of the people in my close network.

When you look at the growth process of a plant, you realise that it is as dynamic as the presence of water in a river. There is always growth and development, there are always a number of processes taking place at any one time and a stream never holds the same water twice. Its always someting new.

The is no point in time, when you can say that the growth or change process has become dormant. Even when the plant itself is dead there is a process of decomposition, as it is reassimilated into the ground from whence it came.

So growth takes place consistently, if growth is not taking place then the system is dying.

A seed may be the best seed in the bunch, but it can not remain a seed forever because it will shrivel and die. The support systems that are put in place for that period are only relevant for a season, after that either development takes place or the seed dies.

My good friend was boasting to me about how “structured” and conformed his days were, how he knew what to expect day after day and how he was really good at his job and how every day was exciting because he had a chance to prove himself and flex his muscles in the mirror.

To me, alarm bells were ringing left, right and center. Its not that I despise being good at what you do, what I was majourly concerned about was “the comfort zone”. Whereby a seed gets very satisfied with being the “chief seed” the “choisest” (if I may use such a word) of all.

It is critical to realise that nature and life itself never intended for things to remain the same, change is inevitable, but the level of discomfort that it will cause in your life depends on how ready and fluidly prepared you are to experience the transition.

From the moment we are born, change is the only constant, so the same thing applies to business. Conditions and the environment that exist will only last for a certain period of time.

There can be no assurances or guarantess that a marketing or sales strategy that worked for similar “company A”, will work for similar “company B”, because the external influences change at any given time.

It is also critical to realise that there exist such things as the business life cycle and this applies both seasonaly and in the long term.
What is key in this is that, it is imperative that you understand what phase your business is going through and adjust accordingly.

When planting a seed, growth homones and weaker fertilisers are required to ensure that growth takes place to the best of the seed’s capacity.

But the very same strategy that worked at seed level becomes irrelavant at seedling level, at growth, maturity and harvest there are different fertilisers (organic/inorganic), pesticides and support systems you have to put in place to ensure a successful eneterprise.

So it is an absolute shock to me when someone expresses comfort at consistency. The only comfort I personally feel a person should have is comfort in change.

Life is a continuously developmental cycle, but it is of utmost importance that you make sure that the change is structured towards development.

Constant change is not beneficial if it is perpertualy circling like a dog chasing its tail. Change has to be progressive.

“The Money Tree”: Land Preparation – Part 2


When farming, it is essential that the land that is to be used for the production of crops be kept as free from rocks and stones and other impediments to growth as possible.

A growing, well prepared seedling can even fail wither and die if it meets a rock under a seemingly fertile ground. You will notice a wide difference between it and the surrounding crops and you are left
wondering why some growths appear to be strong and healthy whilst others appear to be failing yet the fertilizer was distributed evenly and even the pesticides applied the same.

You as the principal promoter has to take the initiative to instill the culture of thoroughness and preparation for the environment in which production is set to take place.
Stones or hindrances in the production process can be found in the case of bottlenecks in production or the transfer of one semi-finished component to the next stage in the cycle.

Plant layout should be made in such a way that components can be transferred from one stage to the next with the least amount of effort and time delay possible.

Smooth running is essential especially when dealing with huge volumes or a consistent flow of goods and services as any slight delay will be felt throughout the chain of production and output.
The losses realized from idle time in machinery, human resources and equipment can at times prove catastrophic.

I know of a construction project that required the use of a hired crane for which they were paying $15 000 per hour. Unfortunately the site where the construction was to take place was open without any
undergrowth vegetation, and it happened to rain just before construction could commence.
The engineers were forced to lay some several layers of rock on the ground so that it would be able to hold the crane. The loss was quite a lot, as the project hours for the day were extended for six to seven
hours, that means an extra $100 000 was spent.

The amount though huge, was far less than what would have been experienced if the crane had become wedged into the ground and had been stuck for two to three days as they search for another even larger
crane to pull the first one out.

So at times it may be necessary as we explained earlier to experience some losses in order to avert realizing an even greater loss later on.

Another approach that would also make sense if possible is to identify land that best suits your individual business. It is far easier to go into an environment that has already been altered and modified to suit the needs of your business.

In most cases, you find that there is considerably more expenditure on real estate areas on a continual cash flow basis on areas that have already been made suitable for the intended business, classified as
prime real estate areas, than what is spent on altering the state of the environment to suit the needs of the business.

When investing or in farming terms, sowing into your business, ensure that you make the land as fertile as possible. You can do this by creating sufficient and efficient support systems for the crops or
engines of the business to perform well.

For example in a law firm it would not make much sense to load a professional and exceptionally performing lawyer with tones of data entry work.
This job can easily be performed by another subordinate. If necessary where large volumes of work are involved a personal secretary may even be necessary.
You do not want a situation whereby every partner within the firm shares the same secretary and each one tries to prioritize their work.

It’s like several plants all fighting for the same nutrients, at the end of the day the plants will end up weak and produce very little output.

So such little support systems have to be put in place to ensure that efficient production takes place, though measures have to be put in place to ensure that the right resources are availed at the correct time. There is such a thing as over-fertilization, were too many resources are given to the employee
to such an extent that the firm begins to realize negative returns from the addition of further resources.
So you have to be careful that an optimal number of inputs are maintained at any one time.

Redeeming Destiny:2-Through a Sound mind


href=”https://potentialtokinetic.files.wordpress.com/2010/06/mind.jpg”>

The mind is the Central processing unit of the body. It relays and controls information according to the data input. This means that a mind that receives positive input will process positive thoughts while the opposite is true for a mind that receives negative input. It is therefore of paramount importance to feed the mind with signals whose frequency generates a healthy relay of information. This means that what a person hears or sees becomes the derivative of what he or she will process in his or her thought life. A positive thought life promotes a balanced individual whilst a negative thought life cripples a person to nothing but a timid block of flesh with a heart that never gets tired of pumping fear, low confidence so that the person suffers from a rare form of mental Kwashiorkor. Such a person becomes vulnerable to predators and vultures who will feast on his or her timidity to fulfill their egocentric agendas.

God’s plan for every person is that they have a sound mind. He created people to think. He Himself is a great thinker and as such it is normal for his image to think. Individuals were created in the image of the Almighty. An image is a reflection that bears all the features of the source. If the source is round so is the image. Surprisingly if the source moves the image also moves and it goes wherever the source goes. If the image was to be taken to a commissioner of oaths he would certify it as a true copy of original owing to the presence of all the features of the source. It is therefore imperative for every individual to think. Thinking therefore makes the minimum credentials of a balanced person. Thinking is not a sin. No wages of sin can be paid as a result of thinking. In fact he who cannot think risks dying before his or her death. His Destiny is uncertain and risks imprisonment in a dungeon of mind control that cuts out every limb of possibility and self actualization.

For this reason it is important to acknowledge the role of a sound mind in redeeming a destiny that seems irredeemable. It is pivotal to ponder on the ways that promote a sound mind in order to foster the generation of healthy thoughts that concur with God’s plan for a sound mind for everyone. One way of doing this is by word of mouth. What this means is that a person should be careful of the kind of information he or she receives. In the paragraph below Revolution depicts the thoughts of a person hit by a missile generated by a tongue that ceases to be a taste organ. Such a tongue becomes a propeller of emotional bombs that cannot be withstood even by the most ruthless Taliban in Afghanistan. Listen to this.

When you opened your mouth, I rushed to listen to your proposition for l knew you to be this sweet voice that could be heard even by the deafest ear. When l saw you roll your tongue l almost resigned to a passionate submission for l knew you to be an irresistible kisser of good news that gave an explicit goodness to the loins and groins of the vulnerable. When you opened your mouth l turned off the music for l knew you to be this special song that was composed in the holy of holies, but little did l know that all hell had broken loose. Even the most trusted cavity protector from Palmolive Brothers could not prevent the unpleasant stench that diffused from your mouth. That holy song was never sung, that soothing voice became this barbaric voice whose ravings left me swimming in an orgy of vindictive passions. You fired missiles that tore my heart to pieces. The kiss of good news never materialized; instead you bit me where no mosquito has ever traded. I let you hold my heart but instead you put it down. I bled, cried until l could cry no more. Of course someone stitched my heart but l will never forget that day, the day ‘when you opened your mouth’.”

Clearly such a tongue brings no sound mind. It edifies no soul and cannot input positive information to nourish an individual. The point to drive home here is that what kind of information are you subjecting yourself to? Who are you listening to? What pictures are you feeding into your central processing unit? Whose image are you? Who is your source? These are rhetoric questions that should trigger you to a point of mental interrogation. These should make one realize that destiny calls for a sound mind. It calls for a healthy mind: it does not require a malnourished brain neither does it make use of a withered thought centre.

Destiny certainly cannot be redeemed by a mind that is frequently subjected to fungi and pests that attack the growth of positive thoughts. In conclusion it is our duty to administer pesticides that fight pests that prey onto our minds. It is our duty to administer fungicides that destroy mental fungi. These fungicides include reading positive books, keeping good company, using your time wisely to mention a few. The list is endless. You are free to add on other ways of generating a sound mind. It is only a sound mind that redeems Destiny, it is only a sound mind that sounds necessary music in the presence of empty vessels that makes the most noise.

Success Tools


Once you have established what it is that you need to carry out any given project that you undertake, the next thing that you need to do is equip yourself. Do not get carried away at this stage and forget what it is that you are doing, recognise the task at hand as it is and that is to simply grab some tools.

Tools are what they are, “tools”, nothing more nothing less. Always have your final objective in mind. A lot of people start out on the right track, with a set of goals and objectives, but soon get caught up in the acquisition of tools that they soon forget their primary purpose.
They begin to think that the tool is what they want and not the actual fulfilment of their goal, hence they end up with a tool and an unaccomplished goal.

For example, lets look at a guy carrying out a construction project that has a six month deadline, and one of the tools required is a crane, and in this utopian town there is only one crane and that crane is only available for a few days. The project also has a limited budget, if the builder gets caught up in trying to secure the crane at all costs and ends up exhausting the budget in the process, he will find himself with a tool and no end. Or get so caught up in haggling for the price that he ends up with neither the tool nor the end, he has a big problem on his hands.

So the idea is to take a balanced approach when acquiring your tools. Keep the task at hand close in mind, but the overall objective even closer.

Any tool can be acquired with a simple method of figuring out what exactly it is that you require to be done, how you feel is best for that to be done and what tools are usefull towards carrying out that task.

Usually you will find that there is not just one way to do a job, or there are numerous tools that achieve the same goal. So you have to go for the task that best suites the simplest and least stressful process of acquiring the tool.

Its all a matter of figuring out the process of acquiring the tool and going at it with zest and enthusiasm. Be efficient in your execution, but patient in your expectation of the manifestation of your end result.

Some tools you may permanantly acquire, others you may just have for the duration of your project.

It is important to know the reasons why in every circumstance, and hence adopt the correct amount of effort and investment in making the acquisition for the project.

Never overestimate what you know, or take for granted some of the simpler tasks that you have to carry out. More often than not, it is those simple tasks if not executed properly that chip away at your project and make it crumble and fall to its knees.

Im a person that likes to challenge myself to new and interesting goals.
If you find yourself lagging behind in some facets of knowledge there are three things you can do; get an expert, go back to school, or both.

Personally, I recommend both, because once you get an expert to guide you, you have the best method of execution and the expert will also take into consideration some of his own diverse knowledge even from outside the field in question.

However it is also important to know what it is that you are dealing with, there is nothing worse frustrating, than a frugal employer meeting an extravagant employee. The two will always be neck in neck, and if you are unlucky enough to be that employer, on a tight budget and at the end of the day you realise that you overpurchased or spent too much, well…. let me leave that to your imagination.

So it is important for you to stand in the gap of the decisions that you make concerning your resources.

So in this instance it is necessary for you to equip yourself with adequate knowledge to make the right decisions.