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Should I Close My Business?

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Jacob Wilson

New Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Jul 12, 2018
7
10
Greenville, SC
Hey guys. My name is Jacob. I'm 21 years old and excited to be apart of the forum!

I've read (listened) to TMF twice now and Unscripted once.

After high school I started a gutter cleaning "business" to make money until I went off to the Citadel to pursue the military.

My first semester at college (The Citadel) I quickly realized that college classes were not a good use of my time or money.

Bored and uninspired by my classes, I went to Google and began learning how to develop my skills and become valuable. My passion for entrepreneurship outweighed my desire to go into the military so I quit pursuing the marines and dropped out of school.

After dropping out 11 months ago, I moved back in with my parents and picked up my gutter cleaning business again.

My intention was to use the income from the gutter cleaning business to fund the start up of an e-commerce business as I did NOT want to stay in the cleaning industry.

I then planned to use the e-commerce income to get myself out of my parents house, pay off my $15k student loans and then fund my next business which I would hopefully figure out what that would be along the way. That would be my real fastlane business.

It hasn't gone as planned to say the least.

Here's what I've been struggling with this year:

Not enough action and lack of commitment. I keep getting distracted from my goals of getting into e-com and resorting back to paying more attention to my gutter cleaning business which is going to take me nowhere in life.

Here's what I need advice on:

I feel like I'm too comfortable and there isn't enough pressure on me to stay focused on e-commerce. I live with my parents but pay rent and for all of my expenses. Gutter cleaning can be good money but isn't consistent and isn't going to get me to my goals. I can make $1000/day and then only make a few hundred bucks the entire next week. I want to sell all of my ladders and equipment and go get a lower paying hourly job because i feel like it would put me in enough pain to get and stay focused on building an e-com brand instead of trying to build a gutter cleaning business. The thing is I have such a hard time justifying this transition because cleaning gutters can be good money but isn't consistent. I'm broke ($6k credit card debt and $450 in my bank account) yet I feel like cleaning gutters is keeping me comfortable and distracted.

My Question for you:

Should I sell my equipment, close down my business, get a lower paying hourly job which would force myself to start a new business? If not, Why?


I will probably clean up and re-post my question on another thread but I would love to hear anyone's opinion on what I should do!


Excited to start participating and talking to everyone here.
 
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Luke12321

Bronze Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Fastlane!
Jul 27, 2007
662
208
North Carolina
I wouldn't get a lower paying job.

You have started your gutter cleaning business, which his more than most can say.

You have got jobs and you have made money, more than most can say.

You say some days you can make $1,000, other weeks only a few hundred.

I would focus on marketing and scale the gutter cleaning business. If you can make a $1,000 in a day, you can find enough jobs (despite marketing cost) to make several thousand a week.

If you were making $100k a year cleaning gutters, would you be worried about Ecom?

It isn't consistent because you have not spent enough time in the industry solving problems, perfecting your marketing.

Just my two cents! It sounds like you are young, you got time to make some mistakes and try new things and learn along the way.

What I hate to see is somehow jump from idea to idea to idea without really digging into one idea to see how far they can take it.
 

minivanman

Platinum Contributor
Speedway Pass
Mar 16, 2017
1,723
4,496
53
DFW
I don't think so. I think you need discipline no matter what you do in life and you are not setting boundaries for yourself. You need to set a schedule and follow it. Set exact times that you have open to work and if you work during those hours fine and if you don't have work for those hours, then spend that time on your other business plans. So if you make $350 this week and $100 next week, it still averages out to about the same as if you worked a low paying job BUT.... YOU are controlling YOUR life and YOU are learning how to manage YOUR time and your life.

Maybe you need to read the book Boundaries by Dr. Henry Cloud.
 

Davejemmolly

Bronze Contributor
Read Fastlane!
Read Unscripted!
Speedway Pass
Oct 1, 2018
113
250
Australia
You seem distracted by 'shiny object syndrome'.

I've never run the numbers on eCommerce, as its not my jam, but it appears 3 out of 5 post on this forum reference it. That's a lot of competition, just on this forum, let alone the rest of the internet.

What makes you think you can get into this space to do it better / add more value than everyone else?

I've got a mate with a business cleaning garbage bins... from the outside looking in, its a terrible business, smelly, menial work, until I watched him clean mine the other day.

One truck, a pressure cleaner and 5 minutes work = $8. I still thought to myself, that's a crappy job, I wouldn't do it.

Then I saw him drive 20 metres down the street, 5 minutes work = $8... i watched him for about 30 minutes, following a the bin truck around, making about $100 an hour.

Last time i spoke to him, he had two new trucks each with new employees making $30 an hour each, as he stayed home doing the books, and scaling his business out.

Long story short, if I were you, I'd stay in the gutter cleaning business and figure out how to scale it out. Factoring in peoples inherent laziness, lack of equipment (ladders), lack of time, and fear of heights, there's a captive market there.
 
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Startup Steve

Contributor
Oct 29, 2018
81
86
You need to sit down and Define all of the actions and attributes that result in your getting the thousand dollars a week. Then further refine and scale that process.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk
 

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