Summary: In today’s Entrepreneur MBA podcast guest, George Barnett from The Strategy Toolkit speaks with Stephen Halasnik about different business strategies for the entrepreneur. They talk about the different types of business strategies and why they are important for a business to strive. They also talk about the important parts of being an entrepreneur and the different resources you can use to help you formulate strategies. 

Business Strategy

Everybody uses some type of strategy but is not aware of it at the time. The more awareness you have of using a strategy you can formulate even more ideas you didn’t even know you were capable of coming up with. Awareness is similar to having knowledge about marketing or finance. It is a necessary toolkit an entrepreneur needs to have in order to grow into a bigger size company. Strategy is like choices, where are you going to play in the marketplace and how are you going to win a share of a business as said by George. 

business strategyThere are many different flavors of strategy. It starts out corporate which is basically the whole idea of the company. You can take all the functions of that company and call it a strategy. There are many different types of strategies that you can use. There are customer strategies that can involve marketing or money strategies that can involve finance.

Important parts to being an entrepreneur

The first important part is having a strategy. You cannot just go into a business selling a product without a strategy. The second part is having a strategy that someone else besides yourself would approve of. You should learn about how companies began and grew into what they have become today. You should educate yourself on the important aspects of being an entrepreneur based on the rest of these companies and what they did. 

Any business you start has to pivot somewhere and you also have to have an endgame for that business. Sometimes this pivot and endgame are not found so you have to keep starting up small businesses until you find that pivot to be all of them combined. A pivot is also very important for entrepreneurs because it is the whole business model that you are trying to get rich with. 

Resources about strategy

There are many different types of resources when dealing with different strategies businesses encounter on a daily. There are many books that can be used as a resource to help you with some type of strategy. An example is George mentioning a book about an investment strategy that is written by Benjamin Graham. This could be a great resource when dealing with investment strategy problems. Before something like this you would need someone experienced in corporate finance to know how much money to reinvest. 

After using these said resources you need to assess your evaluation properly and you need to get something out of it that can help your company succeed in the long run. This is what you need to do as a small entrepreneur, use a resource to help guide you and learn something from it to help formulate your own strategy. 

Three lessons for entrepreneurs

The first is the time value of money. Most people do not think that time could be translated into cash. The second lesson is making your cost of capital. You can do this just by being smart with your taxes. Having a tax strategy could make a huge difference with if you want to go with a deal or not. The third lesson is getting into real estate. This is the number one way to make a fortune in the United States. Real estate has a really interesting tax game associated with it that makes it easier to make good money out of it. Understanding the flow of cash and what you can charge for overtime is very important. 

Leadership Strategies

This is a very important aspect of entrepreneurship. You have to have an awareness of what type of leader you are as an entrepreneur. It is also really important to have personnel you can actually lead, they need to get done everything you need for them to get done. 

As your business expands you need to grow as a leader. You need to add to your strengths with more strengths that make you unique as a leader. This is something entrepreneurs generally struggle with so that is why there are coaches for it. You need to be smart about how to grow your business, especially coming off a pandemic. Leaders need to figure out how to be more successful as a result because that is where all the money is. 

About George Barnett from The Strategy Toolkit

George is a strategy geek based in Silicon Valley: an engineer, diplomat, consultant, investor, and entrepreneur, with two decades of experience working with companies of all sizes around the world as part of the Monitor Group and the Clearlake Group. Since 2015, George has invested a disproportionate amount of his time working with technology firms growing new businesses based on cloud-based software, artificial intelligence, and quantum computing. George reads incessantly and thinks constantly about what it means for business strategy.

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