How many times have you turned over that great business idea in your brain? You know it’s simply brilliant and you could make a motza but how are you gonna get started and just what is stopping you from making the big leap? Is it fear of failure, lack of funds, not knowing what to do?
If anyone is in a position to give advice on how to turn a great business idea into a successful real-life business, that person is Australian entrepreneur, Naomi Simson. The founder of successful tech business, RedBalloon, and a ‘Shark’ from Channel Ten’s Shark Tank, is well-placed to give meaningful and practical advice to budding business founders, having built up her own business from an idea into one of Australia’s most successful companies.
And this is what she does in her latest book, Ready to Soar: Turn Your Brilliant Idea into A Business You Love.
So many people have a good business idea but have no idea where to begin. Before putting your money and time and effort into a business, you need to be as prepared as possible. This is where Simson’s book is invaluable. Ready to Soar covers many aspects of starting a business including: avoiding common pitfalls made by start-ups; formulating ideas; making plans; what you will need to start; what you will need to survive; pitching ideas; partnerships; and investments.
It’s the kind of book that is perfect to have on hand and dip in and out of as you need it. It features lots of useful snippets of advice and handy breakout boxes – there are lots ‘Fun Facts’ peppered throughout and many personal gems of advice drawn directly from Simson’s own successful career. Of course many business people will tell you we learn most from our mistakes. Naomi shares both her personal experience and that of the many business founders she has mentored and coached.
And it’s all in Simson’s casual, easy-to-read style, like to talking to a valued friend: “I was in exactly this scenario myself and I remember the challenge of weighing up the value of my high-paying marketing client versus launching my business… ”
She also interweaves her own nuggets of advice with quotes of inspiration from various sources, such as this one from author Peggy Noonan: ‘Part of courage is simple consistency’ or from Helen Keller, ‘Walking with a friend in the dark is better than walking alone in the light.’
Simson challenges readers to think through things that might never have occurred to them when starting a business, and she reveals the questions she wishes people had asked her at the start of her own journey.
Simson is best known as the founding director of RedBalloon, one of Australia’s major tech success stories. Her previous book Live What You Love showed readers how to love what they do every day and live life to the full. She was the 2011 national winner of the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award and the winner of the 2008 national Telstra Business Women’s Awards for Innovation. She is also a passionate philanthropist and has leveraged her business success to create RedBalloon ‘We Care’ to fund charity and volunteer work.