Imagine opening a business but hating money so much that you chose to run an anti-capitalist cafe.
Well, you don’t need to imagine anything because that’s exactly what Gabriel Sim-Fewer did, and it worked out just as you’d expect it to…
He couldn’t afford to hire anyone and couldn’t make any profit.
Gabriel, who opened “The Anarchist” just one year ago in Toronto, announced on his website that he could no longer access the seed capital required to continue operations because of… (and I’m paraphrasing/reading between the lines a bit here)
… ethically corrupt banks not liking his balance sheet and income statements to want to lend him more money.
But you know what’s even more cringey than an anti-capitalist cafe going broke?
Yours truly had a similar idea when I started AA.
Yep — for about six weeks, I, too, lived in fantasy land. I thought running a donation-based gym would be a hit.
But the truth was that I wasn’t making a value-based decision, and I hadn’t really considered the implications of the business model. It pains me to admit it, but I was trying to get brownie points with a chick I had a crush on who was a mad fan of socialism.
And while she thought it was a great idea, she friend-zoned me anyway, and the idea of a donations-based gym crashed harder than my self-esteem.
Because while my members loved training at my edgy, grungy gym above smash repairs and paying nothing for it, my bank account couldn’t survive off the $10 donations once a month.
So I binned that idea quick-smart, told people I’d be charging a membership, and put some basic structures in place to save me (from myself) and avoid going woke and broke.
Why bother telling you this?
So you can learn the following lesson the easy way.
Here’s the rub:
When you don’t make decisions for your business based on sound economic principles…
Or, when you’re operating in ‘possibilities,’ ‘hope’, or ‘ideals’ (rather than reality)…
Then it really doesn’t matter how much you “want” things to work.
The free market is the ultimate equaliser and really doesn’t give a shit what you want.
It only pays out to those who are valuable…
Which is why your business’s values are at the heart of it all.
To learn about the 10-step framework I’m implementing in my business (and with my mentees) to build enduring companies that spend less time breaking things, and more time building things, then subscribe to the Alley-Oop newsletter below:
Because once the 1st of the month comes around, this framework will go back into the archives — and who knows when I’ll bring it out of the vault again.
– Karl Goodman