Hi everyone! My name is Bobby Alexander and I am the owner of Golden State Guitars and Golden State Pawn. This is going to be my first time writing and managing a blog and I am looking forward to this new and exciting challenge. I am hoping to make this a bi-monthly blog at first and then as the business starts rolling I can dedicate more time to it. I don't have a very clear idea of what this blog will be about yet so for now I will use it as a platform to talk about how the shop is coming along as well as about new products and ideas that we are rolling out to our customers and the community. With this blog you will also get a peak behind the scenes into what it takes to start and manage a small business. Thank you so much to all of my friends and family for your support as I head out on this journey of small business ownership.
I would like to start off by saying that this whole "business startup" venture has been one of the most difficult things I have ever done. It sounds cliche` to say this but it's the truth. I worked at a pawn shop for my former boss for about 10 years and he always told me stories about when he started out and that he was "pretending to be a pawn shop back then". We see how great business is when it is established and has been going for 20 years but we very rarely get to see how it was when it first started out. It is very similar to the situation we have today where us Millennials see how great our parents have it but don't get to see that when they were in their 20's they struggled to get by just like we do today. We are a generation that is all about instant gratification and wanting things to happen for us right now. If this is you then you may want to think twice about trying to start a small business! Nothing happens quickly, there's a thousand things that go wrong, there's a ton of work that needs to get done and there are only so many hours in a day to do them. Did I mention NOTHING happens quickly?
Anyways, starting this business has been a huge leap of faith for me. I am a person that loves consistency and staying in my own lane. I am not generally a risk taker and definitely like my daily routine to stay exactly the same. When I first started playing with the idea of someday starting my own business it seemed like such an impossibility. It's like I was standing at the foot of Mt. Everest looking at this behemoth and knowing that there was no way I could ever climb to the top of that mountain. But as I began to obsess about the idea more and more it became easier to deal with. A huge part of my business development was about visualization. I would wake up every morning with the shop on my mind and go to bed with those same thoughts, almost to the point of it being unhealthy! This was very important though because when I actually started the build-outs and physical development of my new business it was fairly simple. The reason is that I had done it 10 thousand time already, just in my head. I knew exactly what color scheme I wanted to use, what ambiance I wanted to create, what my website was going to look like, how my store signs would look, what my brand would represent, etc.
Starting a business is hard work, especially when you don't have a ton of money to get going. But don't ever let someone tell you that you can't do it or that it is out of reach. All you need is a good idea, an insane amount of passion for that idea, an awesome supporting cast and a couple of screws loose in your noggin to take the leap!