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Why My First Business Succeeded (Part I - Starting Out)

By Jake Kilroy

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

I was an entrepreneur in my younger years. Yes, it's true. Sure, I'm a blogger now. Sure, you could say that I did the whole thing backwards, I suppose. But I was a businessman once.

Long ago, I was very much the creative type: I painted, I danced, I wrote songs. But I still wanted to run a business. My friends didn't understand. My teachers kind of understood. My family understood, but didn't know how to help me.

I originally wanted to turn my house into a drive-thru. My father called the city planner (supposedly) and it was a no-go. There were apparently some residential vs. commercial zoning laws I was spectacularly unaware of. I cried about it the whole day. I mean seriously cried. I'm talking goose-stomping and locking myself in my room.

Come on though, I just wanted to start a business.

Oh...did I not mention that I was 6?

Ok, well, anyway, I was 6 years old and my father was crushing my dreams.

"No, I'm sorry, Jake, we can't turn the van into an ice cream truck," he once told me, even after I explained the logistics of him driving around and my mom buying all of the supplies at the grocery store. I thought my father would be in for it. It meant that he could quit his job and just work local neighborhoods with me.

"What about a restaurant?" I asked my mother.

"Well, how are you going to do that?" she replied.

I sighed, before snapping my fingers and running off. I grabbed my magic markers and started work on my first business plan.

And thus began the adventure of me (pictured in the bow-tie below, posing with two employees) starting my first business.

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