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micahman micahman is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2
A business with £1000, nearly guaranteed profit?

Is it possible? Alan Sugar and the apprentice shows keep going on about how easy it is to make a profit with a few quid, and mostly the tasks seem to show that. Excuse my naiveity, but is it really possible? Can one really start a business with substance with such a small amount? what do i do..sell cakes, make tshirts, clean windows ..

Throwing my thoughts out here, but honestly job hunting has been a pain - ive given up. Rubbish pay for menial jobs if there are any - as a degree educated, intelligent person i hope, I want more!

Been thinking about finding other people, pool everyones cash in, but i dont think 5 people with 5 grand is really a good idea. Basically, what im asking is - perhaps rhetorically - what do i do!! confused, stuck in a unemployment rut and its honestly doing my head in! help.
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HeyyImRyan HeyyImRyan is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by micahman View Post
Is it possible? Alan Sugar and the apprentice shows keep going on about how easy it is to make a profit with a few quid, and mostly the tasks seem to show that. Excuse my naiveity, but is it really possible? Can one really start a business with substance with such a small amount? what do i do..sell cakes, make tshirts, clean windows ..

Throwing my thoughts out here, but honestly job hunting has been a pain - ive given up. Rubbish pay for menial jobs if there are any - as a degree educated, intelligent person i hope, I want more!

Been thinking about finding other people, pool everyones cash in, but i dont think 5 people with 5 grand is really a good idea. Basically, what im asking is - perhaps rhetorically - what do i do!! confused, stuck in a unemployment rut and its honestly doing my head in! help.


Despite how much I admire Lord Sugar for his dedication and his success, The Apprentice does annoy me in the way it makes it seem so easy to make money from enterprise! For example, take the 'make a gourmet food and sell it' task, yes, they had to pay a couple of hundred pound for the ingredients and the show says they made a profit - but what about the cost of the permit to sell food in that area? The licenses required to sell it? The cost to purchase the food stall?

Another example from the recent series would be the ones where they are told to make a child's toy and the most sales win. It's alright getting 50,000 orders, but it doesn't take into account the prices of the prototypes, the costs and feasibility of manufacturing the products, nor even getting such huge meetings from potential buyers in nationwide conglomerate stores!


So in a sense, it IS possible, but it's nowhere near as easy as it looks on TV. Lord Sugar himself did start with next to nothing, and built his way up to a consumer electronics empire (with some failure on the way I might add). It may be the case that you need less than £1000... most professional or personal services require very little equipment and few overheads too, so you could argue that would cost next to nothing to start.

Fish around for an idea, always be thinking about what people need and an idea will come - you must be able to think of something in the world that needs improving?!
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bein.com's Avatar bein.com bein.com is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Brighton, UK
Posts: 101
What a great reply HeyyImRyan!
Absolutely agree!
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intrench intrench is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2
Hi micahman,
There are 2 steps to profit :-
1. Find a way of earning a great income from a business that has little overheads
2. Work harder and smarter than your competitors

All The TV celebrities in the world, won't be able to help you in any better way than that.

Now of course, the hardest trick of all is finding a way of earning a great income from a business that has little overheads.

This is your challenge.

If you become negative you won't get anywhere at all. You are best working, rather than sitting at home mulling things over. Even if you are cleaning toilets for a while. Work does something to your brain, unemployment does something even worse.

Basically, if you cannot solve the challenge, then you deserve to clean toilets, whether you have a degree or not.

So how to approach the challenge?
1. Look at your strengths and weaknesses (what are you good at? - what would people pay you to do for them?)
2. Look at your support network (maybe friends and family can help you solve this challenge in some way)
3. Look at what other businesses are doing (anyone doing really well at a business that you know of?)
4. Sit and brainstorm your ideas and then test them out
5. Go and speak to business people (maybe at your local chamber of commerce or in the high street) and ask them if they know of any opportunities for supplying services to businesses.
6. Stop watching telly, its all made up lol

Good luck
Stephen Ryan



Quote:
Originally Posted by micahman View Post
Is it possible? Alan Sugar and the apprentice shows keep going on about how easy it is to make a profit with a few quid, and mostly the tasks seem to show that. Excuse my naiveity, but is it really possible? Can one really start a business with substance with such a small amount? what do i do..sell cakes, make tshirts, clean windows ..

Throwing my thoughts out here, but honestly job hunting has been a pain - ive given up. Rubbish pay for menial jobs if there are any - as a degree educated, intelligent person i hope, I want more!

Been thinking about finding other people, pool everyones cash in, but i dont think 5 people with 5 grand is really a good idea. Basically, what im asking is - perhaps rhetorically - what do i do!! confused, stuck in a unemployment rut and its honestly doing my head in! help.
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tomstables's Avatar tomstables tomstables is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Preston
Posts: 24
Everyone's right - the Alan Sugar approach is misleading. Making money out of a few quid, of course. But what they don't include when tallying up the numbers are overheads such as fuel when they're running around London from shop to shop, haggling. Or stall/shop hire in major shopping centres.

In terms of a business idea from experience and from what I've seen there are 2 key factors that can make/break a business:

1) a genuine passion for the business. Passion drives the ideas.
2) identifying a genuine gap in the market and reacting quickly and intelligently.

If your ideas don't have these, then sack the idea. If you're not passionate about it, you'll get fed up. And if it's not filling a need, it's won't fly. Final thought is about sustainability - I know a lot of people who are very good at spotting opportunities, making the most of them, making their money and selling the idea/business on. It takes a knack to do that, so have a ponder about how your business will progress.
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Dave4N Dave4N is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: 4NHQ, Taunton
Posts: 6
/agree with all the comments

Alan Sugar pulls so many strings in the episodes and so many overheads are unaccounted for when they work out the "profit" made.

Internet businesses can be a good place to start, similarly affiliate marketing. You can reduce overheads massively by having an internet business/website so the majority of your takings can go to profit

Dave
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Scott-Copywriter Scott-Copywriter is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 12
I started my business with £15 and the skills in my brain. I made my own website, spent £5 on a domain and £10 on Adwords for my first client. The rest is history.

£1,000 is ample for many business ideas. It just means that you have to start off small and work your way up.
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James Smith's Avatar James Smith James Smith is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Abingdon, Oxfordshire
Posts: 2,044
I think others above have aluded to it, but i would put it a little more bluntly.

The Apprentice is an entertainment show. Just like Dragon's Den it is made for television, it is not real life.

However, you DONT need a lot of money to start a business. What you need is to be good at something that others are willing to buy. Whether that is offering your services to do something, making something, buying something cheaper than you can sell it for etc. The steps above about how to find that something are very sound

Your business does not have to be unique. You dont need a special idea, all you need to do is do it on a par (or hopefully better) than your competitors. Indeed its often those business that are really off the wall with a great idea, but that is simply not a great business that go bust. The more humdrum "me too" businesses tend to be the ones that quietly and without a fanfare making the £££. I know his as I do their tax returns!

I hoe that helps,
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