Written by: Robert Kiyosaki
The importance of business systems and how to own them
Do you want to own your own business? Often, when people are trained to be employees or self-employed, E’s and S’s on the left side of the Cashflow Quadrant, they find it hard to transition to the right side of the quadrant, to become a Business Owner (B) and Investor (I).
But if you want to be truly wealthy and financially free, it’s imperative that you move to the right side of the CASHFLOW Quadrant. The best way to do this is to move from an E or and S to a B. By building a business, you learn a business sense and how to build great systems. And owning a successful business is really owning a successful system and leveraging others to work in that system. That’s the fundamental difference between and E or S and a B.
When you start a business, you also learn what makes a business successful—and what makes it unhealthy. These are key things you’ll need to know to be a great investor. Additionally, starting a successful business will give you the cash flow and free time you need to invest well and weather the ups and downs of the market.
When it comes to becoming a successful business owner, there are three ways you can thrive in the B quadrant.
1. Find a mentor
My rich dad was my mentor. A mentor is someone who has already done what you want to do and is successful at doing it. My rich dad taught me about systems and how to be a leader of people, not a manager of people. Managers often see their subordinates as inferiors. Leaders must direct people who are often smarter than they are.
A traditional way to do this is to get you MBA from a prestigious school and then get a fast-track job that takes you up the corporate ladder. An MBA will teach you about the basics of accounting and how the financial numbers relate to your systems, but having an MBA doesn’t mean you’re competent to run a business. You’ll need to spend 10 to 15 years in a company to learn all the different aspects of business. Then, you should plan on leaving to start your own company. Working for a successful major corporation is like being paid by your mentor.
Even with a mentor and years of experience, building a business from scratch is labor-intensive. Creating your own system requires a lot of trial and error, up-front legal costs, and paperwork. All of this occurs while you’re trying to develop and lead your people.
2. Buy a franchise
If you don’t want to take the time to build your own business systems, you can buy a franchise. When you buy a franchise, you’re buying into a proven operating system. The advantage of buying a franchise is that you can take the time you’d spend building your systems to focus on developing your team. And because banks like to make loans to businesses with good, proven systems, they’ll often give a loan to a franchise but not to a start-up.
A word of caution: Don’t buy a franchise if you want to do things your own way. You must be ready to do everything the way the franchisors tell you. You don’t call the shots, but you do own the system. If you want to do your own thing, do it after you’ve mastered both building your own system and leading people.
3. Get involved in network marketing
Network marketing often gets a bad rap. Because it’s a newer form of business system, many people look at it suspiciously and think of it as a scam. Initially, I felt this way too. But after dropping my prejudices and doing some research, I found many people who were sincerely and diligently building successful network-marketing businesses that made a positive impact on their financial futures and others’.
For a reasonable entry fee (often around a few hundred bucks), you can buy into an existing system and immediately begin building a business. And because of technology, this can be done almost entirely online and automated. Paperwork, order processing, distribution, accounting, and follow-up are almost entirely managed by the network-marketing software. This allows you to focus on building your business instead of worrying about the normal start-up headaches of a small business.
Today, primarily due to changes in technology, the risk in becoming a successful business owner is greatly reduced, and the opportunity to build your own or leverage an existing business system is available to virtually everyone. If you want to start your own business, there’s really no excuse not to start today.
Franchises and network marketing solutions took away the hard part of developing your own systems. You acquire the rights to a proven system, and then your only job is to develop your people.
One practical thing you can do today is start learning about business and systems from a mentor and a coach. I had a great mentor and coach when I was building my business, and you need one too. Rich Dad provides both mentoring and coaching for those who want to succeed in business.