So we are now a month into our new start-up, InterLock (www.the-interlock.com) and the overwhelming aspect of starting afresh is the necessary attention to detail and product quality that is required to get it right the first time through. Over the years I have witnessed, and been party to myself, situations where an entrepreneur decides to just wing-it and then figure out the proper documentation or improve the product design later. A recipe for disaster!!!
Details can Make or Break You!
In my effort to build a company that is structured for an exit in 5 – 7 years’ time I have to spend the time and money now to get it right the first time as I won’t have the luxury of time to correct major missteps in how the business is structured later. An example of this was the initial advice I received to establish a Barbados domiciled International Business Company (“IBC”) from our tax advisors – and their recommendation for the firm to utilize doing that through the DGM Group of Companies in the Barbados. So as I went through the paperwork, getting various notarized pieces of personal and corporate information ready, I also then started scoping out how our relationship with DGM would work. It became obvious that a certain hassle would be that DGM’s banking was set up through CIBC and our corporate banking in Canada was through RBC. This would mean extra work facilitating transactions, redundancy of services and overall a higher cost of doing business. Therefore, I started inquiring through my Private Banking services with RBC and was able to be put in touch with their international markets and get a preferred introduction to the RBC banking section in the Barbados. The RBC division in the Barbados was able to help us establish an IBC there (which will be completed in April). This meant a more stream-lined banking operation with the same tax benefits due to the Tax Treaty between the Barbados and Canada as our legal counsel advised. The cost was a couple weeks of paperwork due to abandoning the DGM IBC application – but a significant long term value to the business down the road!!!
Quality is Implicit in Your Brand!
The second significant aspect of the business to develop is my partner Adrian’s desire to make sure that we have a product that when it comes to market is flawless. In past businesses I have made the mistake of rushing a product or service to market before our team could all say it was flawless. Our original InterLock design has been prototyped and stress tested in our Taiwan manufacturing facilities to exceed European quality control standards and has passed perfectly – but a small design element change that will result in more efficient cable storage ease of us with the bike seat stem post is necessary to a flawless design. This means a 2 – 3 week delay in our initial production run but will ensure a higher quality product – which again will pay dividends for us in the long run. We won’t risk being labelled as an inferior product when we have the ability to improve it now versus just pushing it out and doing a product redesign in the future to overcome a negative product flaw. Now – of course we are also cognoscente that we can’t delay too long so we don’t miss our 1st mover advantage, so we will continue to press forward trying to avoid structural or product quality missteps!
What can You Do?
These are just a couple of important examples of how paying attention to detail and quality from the onset of a business will align it for the best success possible – which of course means selling product and being profitable! So take the time to look at your business – is there something you can do today that will make it more efficient or improve the quality of the product or service? If there is make that a part of your Top 3 priorities or your “Rocks” to get done this quarter – your business will love you for it!!!