Steve Jobs started his company from a family garage in California. Jeff Bezos from Amazon did the same thing in Washington. So did Larry page from Google. As did the founders of Mattel toys, Hewlett Packard, Microsoft and Dell Computer. Not a bad roster, huh?
There’s a brilliance in what garages have to offer. Recently, I recently read Malcolm Gladwell’s newest book, David and Goliath that talks about how people use disadvantages and turn them into strengths. It is also interesting to note that it works the other way around as many people use their strengths to expose potential weakness. It is a fascinating book.
In this post, I want to look at a number of examples of how we can find hidden assets and extract great strength from something as seemingly blah as a family garage.
Here are 6 reasons to make sure you don’t overlook the value of your family garage and to show the hidden assets within this seemingly impractical workspace:
1) No overhead
When you start a business, the last thing you want to do is spend any money that you do not have. That being said, while entrepreneurs are making and mixing, revising and improving their product, service and/or idea, they do so without increasing their bills… or their parents. Your welcome mom.
2) Need a place to be crazy and do what you want
The greatest companies have started with the craziest ideas. The founder of the Post-it note actually started with the idea of trying to create something that would stick to anything. His complete failure at that led to the greatest success of post-its.
In my first business, I had a friend who didn’t know what to do with excess fabric left over from his factory that was cluttering his garage. It wasn’t enough to make a garment but before he went to throw it out he had the crazy idea of trying to make headbands and wristbands out of the waste… and made millions. Crazy like a fox.
Note: To view all articles in this blog on startups, click startup advice
3) Need a place to work late night or early morning
I have found that creative people work very strange hours. For instance, in fashion, the designers always work at night for some reason. Entrepreneurs work even crazier hours as the demands upon us far outweighs our allocated time (supply). What we often do is work until we cannot work anymore or when our brains are about to explode. A beat-up couch is often one of the biggest necessities in an aspiring entrepreneur’s garage.
4) Get away from the naysayers
Entrepreneurs are most often not understood. So much so, it is as if we are not only speaking a foreign language but hail from a different planet. We need a place to be crazy and foreign… and to be martians.
Note: To view articles for entrepreneurs starting a business, click help for entrepreneurs
5) Miniature companies
Daymond John from ABC’s Shark Tank started his company in his garage. Not to test the product but for actual production when he first started. He packed his mom’s garage with sewing machines and seamstresses and made polar fleece garments and discarded the rest by burning it outside despite the fact that his neighbors in Queens were not too happy about it. Hopefully they are now Shark Tank fans. I wrote a post on Daymond and his creative hustle here .
6) Quick Turnaround
One of a company’s greatest assets when starting out is the fact that there is no middle man (or woman). The entrepreneur is in the forefront of everything and is nearly always there to take care of pretty much everything at all times. That leads to some very quick turnaround and lightning fast customer service. After all, they are stuck in their garage so they have no choice but to be responsive!
What garage stories do you have?
IMPORTANT NOTE: If you want to explore a more in depth look at starting a business and raising money, Gary and I have shot 4 FREE product training videos that we have created that provides a much deeper and comprehensive look into starting a business. To visit that section, click here now.
Have a great day!