Implementing a Business Plan

ThePistonDoctorThePistonDoctor Member Posts: 62 ■■□□□□□□□□
Hi All,

I'm a fresh graduate of RIT in Rochester and for lack of a better way to put this, I'm killing some time until my girlfriend gets out of school. I wrote a business plan my senior year which I received a large cash prize for and I want to work on implementing the plan. I don't want to start the business in Rochester because when my GF graduates in December I will most likely move to the Southern US (think NC/SC/GA) with her. I'm working part time at night so hopefully that will cover money I need for bills while I work on the plan during the day. My question is how would you go about implementing it?

My idea right now (since I have a lot of connections in Rochester) is just to spend a good amount of time fine-tuning the plan and making it more realistic than it is right now. once I'm done with that (let's say 2-4 weeks, full time) I want to start calling some local businesses and meeting with their C-levels to get their input/advice. Along with this advice I will throw the proposal out there for some pro-bono work to improve my experience in the subject area and also raise awareness about the idea. The goal in the end is to get the idea out and about enough that I will have some investment capital to work with when I move and want to actually get it off the ground. This obviously will not be mentioned until much, much later. The major goal in the next 6-12 months is to arouse curiosity and get a bunch of big-wigs backing me up.

Without giving away too much information, the plan focuses on information security. The nice thing is there is not a lot of startup cost associated with what I want to do, but I'm still curious how you all would go about starting it up. I'm going to play it as I go for now, but extra advice is always appreciated. I'm not looking for anything specific, just input as to how you might go about starting your own business, or how you did it if you currently run one.



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    supertechCETmasupertechCETma Member Posts: 377
    I wrote a business plan my senior year which I received a large cash prize for ...
    so are you planning to split the large cash prize? icon_cool.gif
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    ThePistonDoctorThePistonDoctor Member Posts: 62 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Remember that this is "large" for a college student we're talking about here icon_cool.gif
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    SchluepSchluep Member Posts: 346
    It is very hard to give advise without even the slightest specifics regarding what you are doing that is InfoSe related. There is a big difference between starting an InfoSec Consulting Firm and developing InfoSec related software for example.

    I'll be honest, your name recognition for Information Security will not come from getting people to back you or finding a lot of business partners. It comes from successful work you do in your local community. Tech related businesses (especially consulting for things like Database/Security) do not gain prestige through advertising or listing investors but through consistent positive work and the word of mouth advertising as a result.

    Most investors want nothing to do with a new company or start-up company. Many of the ones that did lost large amounts of money a few years ago during the dot com bubble burst and are not willing to risk the same mistake twice.
    The major goal in the next 6-12 months is to arouse curiosity and get a bunch of big-wigs backing me up"

    No matter how many big-wigs you have backing you up it will be hard to gain clients when your business does not have a proven record you can show, especially when it comes to Security of all things. A new graduate without experience is unlikely to earn the trust of a company looking to secure their most precious assets.

    If you have a good plan for a business idea you should definitely go for it, but don't think you need a lot of debt or a large number of investors to accomplish it. Building up to your plan is always a good idea. For example, instead of spending 40 hours per week developing your plan and meeting with people and then relaxing in the evening, get a full time job as close to the area you plan to work in as possible and starting getting some practical experience while you develop your plan on the rest of your time. If you need to meet with people during the day find a job to work evenings and weekends while you building your business during daylight hours. This will give you the chance to support yourself while you work to develop and implement your plan.

    The best advice I could give is to avoid debt as much as possible and don't rely on investors to make your dreams succeed. While business ownership should be the ultimate goal of anyone that understands a free enterprise economy, don't think that working for someone else is beneath you in the meantime as you build your future. Many of the most successful businesses I know were started out of a garage and without any investors, though they all required many years of hard work and discipline.
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    KasorKasor Member Posts: 933 ■■■■□□□□□□
    I agree, sorry to say that without any topic or major guideline about your project. I don't know what to tell you.

    Implementation is based on your planning. If you already have plan, then just move the direction to the project. However, business practice and project are two different issue because human factors play key role on business implmentation.
    Kill All Suffer T "o" ReBorn
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    ThePistonDoctorThePistonDoctor Member Posts: 62 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Alright, I will give some more details on the project. It is an IT consulting project. The firm will test for social engineering weaknesses but not necessarily to gain access to network resources. It will also test businesses that don't use computers as their primary source of income (retail stores, for example, manipulating the other customers to avoid paying for purchases, restaurants to avoid paying for food, automotive centers to get my hands on phony vehicle inspection stickers, etc.) Of course, information security will be a HUGE part of it and I eventually plan to expand into penetration testing, seminars, training, etc.

    Even without providing this detail, you have all given some good advice. Schluep, be assured I certainly understand that I don't need a ton of debt to make this work! I certainly want as little as possible. That being said, gaining experience and developing a positive track record will be done through the pro-bono work I mentioned. I'm hoping that I will end up with a reaction something like "Holy sh!t, how did you do that?" from the companies I work with here, and a written statement saying I can use them as a reference when I move away 6-12 months from now.

    Also, I live next door to an IT consulting firm that does software/web development, network services, IT consulting, remote monitoring, and IT staffing, and they have lots of work that they would allow me to do for them around the area (setting up networks, meeting with their clients, etc). The president of the company is a good friend of mine and he actually hooked me up with the CEO of a local penetration testing firm to discuss the plan (this guy has also started 3 companies of his own).

    All things considered, I think I'm in good position to move forward. Given the extra information here, does anyone have any other advice? Thanks again!

    EDIT: as far as working in the mean time, I will be working part-time at night doing sales starting next week. I finish with my information security co-op I've been on for the last six months then. One of the major reasons I want to focus my time on developing my own business is because the IT market just plain SUCKS in the area where I live. The jobs out here are nothing but helpdesk and garbage for $12 an hour and I'm certainly not going to pay back loans for my education at RIT with that. I just have a strong feeling that if I get started in something like that I will end up in a dead end job and have nothing to show when I move.
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