This seems a strange way to start a Blog as its about my private business thoughts and history , but it might be of interest to you.
Of course You will have to excuse my grammar , when i say “I” in this Blog , I really mean “We” as without my wife’s help and support I would not have been able to try or do many of these projects
Blogging your way to Internet success…
The continuing saga of the search for the Holy Grail of businesses
My name is Steve Blakesley and i can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
I have been thinking about my introduction, should it be
Bright? , Witty? Informative? Honest? What would you like? OK what about the truth? YES that’s it, so fingers crossed I do hope you enjoy.
I came from a modestly poor back ground, brought up in London in the fifties which was a magical time.
I had a great child hood, as a family we were always short of money though, no holidays, no car, very few treats, I have no idea why, my mum and dad both worked, and I was the only child at home, both my older brother and sister were both married.
This is where I think my search for wealth came from, as other children brought in their new shoes ,pens ,books, toys etc, the need for me to find a way to make money was instilled in me, I wanted material things to, There were many time i had to cut out cardboard inserts for my shoes as the had holes in the soles.
I will share with you very briefly some of the business and ideas I have been involved in over the last forty years.
As far back as I can remember I have had ideas popping into my head, luckily I did not suffer from procrastination, or fear of failure, and I was always prepared to put my arse on the line so to speak.
As the years wore on it became like a quest for finding the Holy Grail of business, like an itch you could never scratch always there never relenting.
I remember thinking if there are others like me out there and if there was and they did procrastinate, or had the fear of failure they would be going mad or heading for a breakdown, or even worse the nut house was waiting for them, if they had these ideas and never acted on any of them.
HOW CAN I FIND THESE PEOPLE! COULD WE BRAIN STORM! HOW RICH AND POWERFUL COULD WE HAVE BECOME!
I remember thinking I must treat this like a gift.
Actually it started before then I was about seven when I sold my cricket bat to my auntie for 2/6p, nice lady, I recon she felt sorry for me, then I have a recollection of selling a junior set of snooker balls and a squeeze box to the second hand shop, don’t ask I have no clue where I got them from.
I also remember playing cards for pennies with my parents and brother (he was a lot older) and his wife on Sundays, I loved to win, as I never had any pocket money, funny how you pick things up quickly when you need to.
What purpose are we here for I asked myself constantly when I was younger, it was a hollow feeling, and I felt like great things were about to happen to me.
The years flew by and I look back at things I should have done and never did (not many thank god), although I was ridiculed when younger, things were said like oh not another bright idea, although when I con fronted these people latter in life, they changed their story to I always knew you would make it.
But with all of my achievements and as the years fog over things I regret one thing, I should have made a journal to keep it all fresh, these thoughts and deeds would have kept it fresh, these previous thoughts and deeds would have answered many of my own questions later on.
I will reveal many secrets to you though this blog, will you be smart enough to see them? OK imagine this scenario ,I have no money (broke) but I do have an idea , I am scared I will fail, so I have a choice be scared and broke, or do it and be well paid?
YOU MUST ALL OVER COME FEAR OF REJECTION AND FAILURE; it is the biggest demon out there.
I never had any capital (ever) honestly, do you know how frustrating that is, OK my business background very quickly I will try not to bore you, at about sixteen years of age, I approached a local publican I knew and asked if I could site a shell fish stall outside the front of his pub for free! , he agreed, I ended up with three.
I built the stalls myself from 2 x 2 and ply wood storing them in the yard at the back of the pub, for the stock I travelled a few miles to Billingsgate fish market and bought my produce (I would never have swooped this experience for anything, it was an amazing atmosphere in the markets, the smells the hustle and bustle, even the journey there at 4 am was a delight.
Between all the businesses I dabbled in and studied let me share with you what I did for a living in between, Firstly at Fifteen I started work in a factory in the machine shop on the lathes, so boring, and it showed as the factory manager moved me into the maintenance department, this was terrific as I could wonder the factory floor whenever I liked.
The thing is coming from a poor background, not well educated, and not being taught good business practices etc, I was always on a sticky wicket, my problem was never about making money but holding on to it, making it grow, using it wisely.
No one told me about goal setting, no one taught me marketing,if anyone needed the Internet then it was me, if only!
It would have helped having a mentor yes, or having a family that encouraged reading books, but it’s no good dwelling on this as this was not the case.
Anyway I had many jobs picking up skills and knowledge on the way, here are some of the many of the things I did.
During my early years it used to come into my head, I will find a niche market and make loads of money and change my life, Video films was it, I got in at the very start.
No great detail here as this is a long story as I started with £29 and two borrowed videos and built it into six shops and yes it did change my life, it was the power of attraction at work, and I never knew what the hell what that was .
I sold up about three years before satellite TV, probably two years to early.
This was one of my first really profitable businesses , and in some ways wish I had carried it further, and can be applied to many things, so if you have products you want to move on its not a bad way of getting into the market place.
I went to the east end of London and purchased some women’s and children’s fashion Garments (hey I had my girlfriend with me before you think anything).
I placed adds in the local paper for people to hold a clothes
party , once at the party I recruited more agents to do the parties for me , on commission , I also got more booking for more parties, and I always got them, so I had no need to advertise further.
I had three agents before I sold the business on.
Wine bar restaurant
A really funny thing happened while I was concentrating on expanding my video business a property details dropped though my letter box.
I viewed it, although it was not suitable for a video ship it was ideal for a wine bar, again I will not go into great detail how I set up this wonderful business up.
But opening night was one of the proudest moments ever, as I took my dad to the project before I began it. His word’s were OMG what have you done now! To see his face on opening night and hear his admiration will be with me forever, he was so proud.
I had converted a 14th century listed building into something very special, 18 months later I sold it for six times what it had cost me, my mistake was not rolling the money over and doing it again .
I went into the taxi business,when living near Gatwick Airport I saw a great opportunity to start a private hire company, I leased 3 cars did my marketing and within a year had 33 cars 29 of which were mine, sounds great huh?
Let me tell you how hard it is keeping those cars on the road not only are you at the mercy of the staff and there strange quirks, because these guys do not treat a car as their own.
On top of that the costs of keeping the cars on the road the mechanics, insurance etc.
In fact I have started the taxi business twice in different area of the country and both times made money, however this is not a business I would do again.
Also while at Gatwick with the amount of hotels in the area , I thought I might get into the wholesale fruit and veg market, supplying the hotels, this is harder than I thought and only lasted a few weeks, as the chef’s had their own agenda and that was not always the price or quality of the produce, enough said I think.
Then going back a few years I saw an opening in the potpourri market, I got hold of an electric cement mixer, found a wholesaler who sold the various component mixes for the potpourri and then found a place where to by the essence .
I put them all in the mixer and bagged them up and sold them at the market, not a great earner but I made a profit.
The golf magazine
Of course there is my nephew ( he is a fleet street photo journalist) unfortunately he also has the family genes for searching for the holy grail of business as well , not quite so bad , unfortunately he does procrastinate ,and has the fear element.
In fact he should have a site teaching people how to be photo journalist as this is very lucrative, and he has introduced and trained at least six people to it from various backgrounds from the unemployed labourer to a plumber, so if any of you agree with me and think he should do something about setting up a teaching site let me know
Anyway he and I put together a dummy sports magazine and actually went to pitch it to the publishers, quite amazing really as we did it in two days , they wanted to go ahead, we did not the cost for us was prohibitive , but this was a great lesson as it showed me that doors can be opened with just a fragment of an idea, the only thing was making the first call.
Other Businesses I started
Bureau DE Change
Buying and selling Gold
Buying and selling Mobile Phones
Property Investing (using no money down),
Importing electrical goods
Ice Cream Kiosk.
Introducer for overseas property investment
Wedding Cars (Rolls Royce)
Fish and chip restaurants
And a few others
The ones I missed
My biggest regrets , not many but pretty big ones I think, I used to go to my local butchers to get flavoured ribs and chicken BBQ , sweet and sour etc, I asked him how he got them he showed me big sacks of powder which when mixed with the meat marinated them, and old me this was the only way to buy the product,
Now remember this was way before anyone had any sauces out in the supermarkets, I thought I should buy some sacks and re package them unto resalable packets to sell to the public, four years later someone did………..ouch
I was in Hong Kong sourcing some Tiffany light shades and other products , and came across some roller skates with one blade I thought hey these look good , I brought back some samples ,with the idea of touting them round the wholesalers and toy shops, taking orders and getting a container sorted out.
Guess what i did? yep a little bit of procrastination you could even call it laziness anyway it crept in ,and promptly left them under the stairs on my return and did absolutely Nothing.
Two years yes two years later these roller blades were in every toy shop….Ouch
Well this one was not really a miss more an unfortunate misconception , and a me not worrying and hassling the bureaucrats , the story is a couple of decades ago at Poole Quay the parking was free , i approached the harbour authorities asking to takeover the responsibility for the parking on the quay, they replied great idea but we are going to negotiate with local authority to do something similar,and i left it there.
What i should have done was kept chasing them or offered a short term option , as it took 3 years for them to get there act together, just think how much money i could have made, Ouch.
In the early 1980′s night clubs were making fortunes, remember back then we had restrictive licencing laws, anyway we found a building got the lease sorted finance in place, we went to licencing , then something out of left field happened , the solicitor never tied up the lease he put into the negotiations that it was subject to licencing whether we proceeded or not, even though we instructed him not to this, we were gazumped the on the day we got the licence in place, by a company that wanted to make plastic flowers of all things , Ouch
I can quite see how local councils get so much critasiam though thier general lack of business acumin, and there lathargic interpretation of time, as in business time is money , in the council time does not matter as the rate players will pay in the end , so whats the rush.
All though my life I have used the power of attraction without even knowing I was using it, not knowing of its exist stance, what it was, until quite recently, now of course there are many great teachers, people who know how to use this amazing tool to its full potential.
WHAT DOES IT DO?
Let me tell you, try it, 100% GUARANTEED TO WORK EVERY TIME, come closer let me whisper….
You can have anything you wish for, yes anything, wealth, education, love, travel, health, yes a great gift, and we all have it! a universal gift ,Achievers are believers ,but enough of this I am not here to teach you this stuff, so back to the beginning I got a little distracted there.
Hey you might think I am a little crazy but I have travelled the world had fun and learnt a great deal.
What do I do now? What is my latest adventure? well I have been doing it for about 18 months and it works well, I made money from day one, it requires little work, and leaves me time for other projects
I will not tell you what my latest business is, you will have to buy it (laughing) tell you one thing you will make money with it.
I am going to carry on my adventure in this blog if you want to keep up Just click here for when I post my updates and I will inform you.
I have so much more to tell especially about what I found out about the Internet that only took me six years to suss it out, well not really how can you suss something that is UN sussable ,this was a real quest and as I have never failed at any business , this Internet thing was bugging me big time, but i will tell you one thing the Money is in the List!
Couple of things going on at the moment I am in the throws of trying to set up a new supply of foreign currency , this is a tough one but am close.
Secondly i am talking to a couple of TV production companies about a new TV show , about starting up in business with very little or any resources or capital, i will keep you informed.
Its really hard to explain to them that the kurgerand, ring , gold watch etc, which they bought 10/20 years ago as an investment , is actually worth less than when they purchased it, but they then argue that they read that the price of precious metal has never been so high, so how can it be worth less!
I then have to explain as they paid retail price when they purchased the item, and the Jeweler put his mark up on which could be as much as 300%, as the item may well be in his window for years before any mug , Oops person wanted to buy it or it may even be on sale or return.
And of course when they come to sell it they only get scrap value unless they can sell it privately or its insured and it gets stolen or lost , then they can claim the replacement value
My Tip is always buy Gold second Hand at scrap value, never buy Silver , as i have said before IMO the best investment is wine
In the mean time why not sign up for my news letter at the top of the page for more info on my amazing journey , as i have much more to tell.
Wow this seems strange , i have’nt been able to access my pages for a very long time due to a fault on my pages , so much to write and do