Kim Levine , the inventor of Wuvits or those little bags that provide soothing penetrating moist heat, has written a compelling account of how she started her business and all the ups and downs she experienced.
Her book “Mommy Millionaire: How I Turned My Kitchen Table Idea into a Million Dollars and How You Can Too!” is a very good read if you want to learn what it is really like to turn a business into a success. I like the book because it is not self-serving and not one of those “I-am-great-hear-me-roar” ode to self. Instead, you’ll read about her desperation when she made a fatal mistake that led to near-bankruptcy to her efforts to revive her business, even driving 5 hours to stores selling her products so she can do an in-store demonstration in the hopes of increasing sales.
In one of the sections, she wrote about her 10 rules for doing business, and these are:
- Don’t apologize for being a mom.
- When dealing with someone in business, always ask yourself, “What’s in it for them?”
- Pay your attorney for advice only. Most of the paperwork you can do yourself (including setting up your corporation, registering your trademarks, and even writing your own patent).
- Find a mentor. Having someone who’s “been there and done that” can really help you get through tough times and understand it’s part of the territory.
- Remember that nobody ever got rich by spending money, and understand what overcapitalization is and how to avoid it.
- Have a story. Everybody loves a good story.
- Create a pitch and cold-call! Nothing has been more effective for me than cold calling major accounts.
- Realize that everything happens for a reason. Accept challenge, conquer it, and learn from it.
- Learn the “$20,000 Rule”: what it really takes to fund even the smallest business start-up.
- Believe in yourself!