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CRE Insights Blog

5 Lessons Learned Over 10 Years

Leading Family Office industry expert, Richard C. Wilson, speaks about the five lessons he’s learned over the past decade in creating his businesses. Hello, this is Richard Wilson from the Family Office Club. I have five lessons I’ve learned over the past decade since I started my business I wanted to share with you real quick. First, pick a high conviction niche to dedicate your business to. That way you’ll do the hard work that others are not willing to do because you know it’s worth getting there. If you choose a niche and you’re unsure about it, you don’t know if you’re digging in the right area, you’ll do things that are the short-term way to do things. You won’t really commit yourself to that niche at the same level as someone else who’s really putting it in for a decade, two, three decades. You just can’t operate at the same level unless you have that high conviction mindset on what you’re doing. Second is that your system is your brand, so the processes, the operations, the checklists you set up on how you hire team members, who you fire, and why, what you do with your brand, where your business is based out of, what thought leadership you put out, what events you speak at or host. All of those things change your brand, but it’s really all about the systems within your business and that creates the fruit which is your brand. The third lesson I’ve learned is that you really need to work in a proven model or a proven industry, business model or a proven industry, or you probably won’t survive. If both are too new, or both are new at all, you’re probably going to be dead in the water and you won’t survive and you won’t produce enough cash flow to make it. If one of them is brand new and the other one is proven, you have a better chance. But if you can just make a slight tweak on the existing industry, maybe carve out a high-end piece of an existing industry, and take proven business models and apply it to that tweaked approach to a proven industry, then you have the best chance of survival in my mind. The third lesson I’ve learned is really that if you have something that is working already and it’s all ready “gliding,” that it’s a lot easier to attach a jet engine to that, rather than sending off an employee on an adventure in the jungle to try to make a new operating business work, or putting 20,000 a month behind a business that’s not proven yet. It’s always best to prove something out before you pour advertising or multiple full-time employees on top of it. I have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars exploring business ideas that I didn’t prove out myself or I didn’t get to some level of operating profits before delegating and bringing someone else onto the project, and that was a pretty costly mistake. So that’s something I think that you could avoid yourself if you’re running a business. The last thing I wanted to share for today was really the lesson of focusing on what I recorded a video on just last week, on basically ignoring the short-term profits or revenue when you have a new client, when you approach a new market, when you engage a new investor, and really focus just on building the investor relationship and building it out for the long-term. So in other words, when you go and you meet someone and you don’t know what their net worth is, they might be worth 20 million, they might be worth 200 million or 2 billion, or you go to a client, you don’t know if they could be spending 2,000 a year with you or 200,000.

About the author

Richard Wilson