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by Xan Hood August 02, 2019

Build a Business

My brother a few years ago told me the story about homes in Belize. They are mostly unfinished. They are liveable, but still in process. Homes there are constantly being built. They are in a constant process.

Instead of loans to buy their dream house, they take what they have from their paycheck and add to the land they have. So there might be a bedroom and a kitchen. And other sections still in process. As they get some money, they might purchase some cinder blocks to put up walls. A few months later, the ceiling rafters. A few bags of cement for a new floor. It’s a process to build the house. One block at a time. One paycheck at a time

In America, we like things to go quick. And microwaved. We want to finance a dream house immediately. And we found a way to put it on 30 years payment so we could afford it. We might own a huge home, and nice cars, but have 0 net worth. It's a borrowed dream.

Image can be everything.

I don’t point fingers at anyone else, because I’ve had to learn the hard way on all this. I am in my thirties, and so many of us have wanted to live our parent’s success right out of college. It can get us in trouble.

But I’m learning something in this business. Sure there are the tech companies that can shoot up over night, and turn into billion dollar companies. But most companies are built one brick at a time. One day at a time. Not through a financing round that launches you. But sweat and hard work.

The majority of Americans build things through cash flow. Building their company over time. Making a lot of small additions like the folks in Belize.

It’s a good thing. And something we all need to be reminded that good things take time. Including our dreams.

Why? Well for one, there is a huge learning curve. And mistakes will be made. And so making mistakes along the way with a long term approach helps. You can afford to make them. And you will.

What if we saw our lives, our homes, and our businesses as a work in progress? Building one section at a time. It sounds exhausting… and I tend not to want to wait. But what if there is a virtue in it. What if that was something that needed to be shaped in our character. Ambition is good. But what if ambition with patience could bring us into those dreams?

We are building this company a little at a time. A day at a time. Folks will pass us by, innovate beyond us, maybe take a few of our ideas, but we will keep the same pace and building the company a room at a time. A brick at a time.

It’s not as sexy, but it’s the right path.

I’d encourage you in whatever area you are in, season of life, business, relationships, what if you were in it for the long haul. Don’t take out the 30-year mortgage approach of your life to finance all your dreams at once. Don’t sell your companies equity share to make it happen overnight. Build it little by little.

One day… it might just be a mansion.

Xan Hood
Xan Hood

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