Writing Effectively Part 1

Mar 9 12:07 2005 Loring A. Windblad Print This Article

Knowing how to start a home based business is the first step to actually creating your own home based business.

But knowing how to write effectively is the difference between “having a home based business” and “having a very successful home based business”.

There is an old adage in bridge: “Everybody makes mistakes,Guest Posting beginners and experts alike. But by the time the expert makes a mistake it usually really doesn’t matter; the beginner has already lost the hand!”

These words of wisdom apply equally to effective writing: either you have already learned to write effectively, you are going to learn to write effectively, or you never will learn to write effectively.

50 years ago a friend of ours, John, started a business raising chickens. He did all the work himself – fed, watered and cared for the chickens, butchered them, took them to market and sold them. He made his first couple of million doing business this way. And he didn’t hire outside help until his volume of business forced him to do so – he did it all himself.

The first secret of a successful business – Do it yourself until you can afford and need to hire outside help.

John decided that he’d been doing the chicken business long enough and he wanted to do something new with his life. So he “leased out” his chicken business and bought a 48-acre farm. Now you may wonder what, in this modern day and age, you can do with a little 48-acre farm? Well, John planted trees – nuts – on 10 of those acres. He turned several acres into blueberries, more into red currants, more into black currants, more into raspberries, more into thornless cultured blackberries, more into several other fruits. And he devoted the central 4 acres to his home, a bar for his farm equipment, and a couple of larger outbuildings for this ‘n that.

This ‘n that turned out to be a jam- and jelly-making enterprise. He made specialty jams and jellies. Well, how are you gonna compete with the big jam and jelly makers, Kraft, , etc., nationwide, with only 44 acres of fruits? You aren’t. Well, John found his niche. He began producing specialty high-quality products for sale from his farm in gift baskets and stand-alone. And he began producing the little packages that you get in restaurants with your toast, and developed a local market for these products

The second secret of a successful business – Find your niche, make sure it fits what you are doing and can do, and develop it. Expand only to meet expanding demands.

Then John got into our bailiwick. We had been friends for years. He knew what we did, we knew what he did. John decided to expand his business into specialty fruit wines. In spite of being a millionaire several times over, in spite of having a very successful first business sub-contracted out and still making him money, in spite of having a very successful second business which he wanted to expand, John now committed the common error of the uneducated self-made man (or woman).

He needed to raise money to go into the wine-making business. To do this he had to have a comprehensive business plan showing potential investors how he planned to make their money back, along with a reasonable profit and in a reasonable period of time. Not much formal education himself he knew he needed someone to write this business plan who knew more than he did. So he did his due dilligence and investigated all the possible sources of writing expertise he could come up with.

He found a young lady with a PhD – the magic words to the uneducated – who was a professional writer, and he hired her to create his business plan. PhD in English Writing means A skilled writer, no? Actually, it does mean No!

She wrote his business plan and he went out to raise the money he needed – and couldn’t raise a farthing! Her business plan was so ineptly done that he could not entice any offer of financial support, not even for $10,000, let along the $1 million he was seeking. He came to me for help and I re-wrote the business plan from the ground up. After the damage done by the first business plan it took him quite a while to find an investor willing to take a chance.

The third secret of a successful business – When you need help outside your area of expertise, be very, very careful. A “degree” in a field does not mean a person is expert in that field. Particularly true of writing.

Another example: You have personal experience in this or your know someone who has. For every job advertised there are literally hundreds of applicants. The first step of the process is to submit a resume. One job, 250 resumes. How do you get your resume even to be selected as a “finalist” let alone be the one of 250 who gets the job!

Well, this is your business. You have gone into a home based business as a Desk Top Publisher, which means, among other things, writing. Not just writing, but writing effectively, writing so that the person who’s business plan you wrote will get the money he or she needs. Writing so that the person who’s resume you wrote is at least a finalist for the position, preferably the finalist!

How do you become an effective writer? It’s a learning process. Some of us learn more quickly than others, but none of us are born with this ability; we all had to learn our writing craft the hard way, through failures and successes.

The point here is: if you understand that formal education and degrees do not necessarily equate to skill at the task, you are well on the way to becoming a successful and effective writer. This brings us to….

The fourth secret of a successful business – You must know that you are at least equal to the best alternative out there….then make sure that your clients do benefit from your expertise.

Good luck.

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About Article Author

Loring A. Windblad
Loring A. Windblad

Loring Windblad has operated his own HBBs for nearly 40 years, is a published author and freelance writer. Loring has written grants, business plans and resumes that got the job done right. His latest HBB endeavor is http://www.organicgreens.us

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