By Whitney Clark
The Center for Entrepreneurship welcomed authors of a new book on Tuesday to talk to students about the possibility of starting their own companies and doing it in an affordable way.
Rich Christiansen and Ron Porter are the co-authors of a new book titled “Bootstrapped! A No Bull Solution for Small Business Success”, which shows readers how to take $5,000 and make it into $1 million.
“We put on paper what we could not find anywhere else,” Porter said. “We wanted to convey that you could do this without giving up your life.”
Christiansen, an experienced entrepreneur, has tried this many times with companies he created and has had great success.
When Christiansen and Porter decided to write their book, they knew they needed to start a new company, Castlewave, specifically to show their readers it was possible.
“We wanted to prove we can do this,” Porter said.
Starting with only $5,000, after the first year CastleWave is now worth $1.2 million with a 65% net margin.
Christiansen said the book, which will be released around April, shows readers it is possible to go after their dreams.
The two authors said an entrepreneur needs to first start with a good idea. They use Michael Porters “Five Forces Model” which gives entrepreneurs a feel for how successful their idea would be in the business world.
Once a person has an idea, they need to assess their risks. The only way to overcome these risks is to look at their own strengths and weaknesses and find someone else who can make up for those weaknesses, the authors said. Entrepreneurship is all about courage;
the last step is to take the risk, they said.
“You have to be willing and able to wander in the fog,” Christiansen said.
He said one of the main things students should understand is there is more to the process of entrepreneurship than just money.
“You need to find something greater than money,” Christiansen said. “When you find a higher purpose, the money just happens naturally.”
Students in the lecture series classes as well as other guests attended the lecture to gain advice from the presenters.
“I think the stuff they said was different than normal,” said Weston Baxter, a sophomore from Orem who attended the lecture. “It was good to hear some new advice.”
“My favorite part of the book is that they really live by this,” said Tina Roper, office manager for CastleWave. “I love the book because they laid it out in a way that is very readable.”
Porter said the book is meant to be a guide, or a recipe for those looking to enter the business world.
“We talk about the head and the heart of an entrepreneur,” Porter said.
With our economy in a recession, many students are concerned about the idea of taking chances, especially when it comes to their money.
“The economy is an incredible opportunity for change,” Christiansen said. “This is an entrepreneur market right now. We need to jump ahead in the economy.”