If you are an ambitious entrepreneur living in the U.S. - or really anywhere in the world - then the odds are you have heard the name "Gary Vaynerchuk". This forward thinking, multi-millionaire, business guru, founder, CEO, motivational speaker and bestselling author is known for unveiling the secrets of personal and professional success through the lessons learned in his own experiences. Hold the sugarcoat. He covers a multitude of topics ranging from social media branding and culture trends to must-have investments, how to invest in yourself, and 'the scam of college'.
One of the biggest topics he covers is investing in you... sound familiar?
Making, Not Faking
Gary's approach to begin investing in yourself is to "Make Money: Don't Raise Money". Meaning: Creating and sustaining your small business is about more than taking out a loan to cover temporary costs. It's about being savvy with that investment in you by living a practical lifestyle and decluttering your space.
"You can buy and sell, you can get rid of old junk, you can move into a smaller apartment for 2 years, you can get an extra job, you can save money and not go out, you can skip Coachella and the club and spending 500 dollars on stuff you don’t need."
The end goal: Have more money coming in than coming out. You want to build a business that is profitable each month and can pay its own bills.
Where to Borrow
In his #AskGaryVee Youtube series, Gary says he would choose to not take on debt - as we all would. But if you have to take on capital, he says that he would rather get debt from a non-family, high net worth individual than an institution because humans are more patient and flexible.
This is where Gary and I disagree.
Personal lending requires more patience, time, research, and risk than borrowing from an institution. Loaning from a bank has many advantages over loaning from another individual including:
- Making large purchases including property, vehicles, and machinery.
- Maintaining ownership in your business without someone telling you how the loaned money should be spent. In some cases of person-to-person lending, you will even have to give up a percentage of your ownership or profits in order to obtain capital.
- Building credit.
- Offering lower interest rates and longer repayment periods.
Traditional bank lenders are a safe, low-risk, and reliable option for new business owners needing someone to believe in and support their venture.
Related Reading: 5 Steps to Get Approved for Small Business Loans
In an ideal world, everyone could live their lives debt-free while pursuing their professional and personal dreams. Alas, we are not living in one.
With that said, there are still ways to make it happen.