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Why My First Business Succeeded (Part VI - Opening Night & Closing Shop)


The grand opening was upon me, a little 6-year-old entrepreneur dressed in a bow tie.

I came up with the idea, I wrote the business plan, I named the company, I hired the employees and I marketed to the customers.

Now it was time to make some money.

And my restaurant "eEvita's" was a huge success.

Relatives poured in from all over the county (yes, county) to eat at my restaurant.

My brother and sister sat people and took drink orders, my mother cooked, my father was the busboy and I hammed it up as the manager: shaking hands, welcoming relatives like strangers, probably speaking with some silly accent that I made up as I went.

I took all of the orders and even ran out a few meals. Sometimes, as an entrepreneur, you have to put in some of your own labor.

But I was also an approachable owner; asking how the meals were, asking how the customers were, asking them what they were planning to give me for my birthday in two months.

I was stern, but still exceptionally kind to my employees, and even nicer to the customers. I was working hard and moving faster than I had the following Halloween when I ate 10 Snickers bars in less than three minutes.

My investors/parents were proud, my host and hostess liked me as a boss (and as an older brother), and my customers swore that they would return.

But...alas, like Robert Frost and Ponyboy Curtis said long before me, "Nothing gold can stay." I decided that the restaurant was a lot of fun, but also a lot of work. I took my money and went on a small spending spree, saving the rest for the coming summer.

It was 1992 and I was rich. Well, I suppose if you have any amount of income over $30 in first grade, you're some kind of venture capitalist. You're really just your own selfish investment at 6 years old.

Author Robert Fulghum once said, "All I really need to know I learned in kindergarten." As for me, everything I really needed to know about business I learned in first grade.


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