Thursday, August 28, 2014

Help From SCORE

On Aug 27, 2014, at 6:12 AM, Sam wrote:
Hi John:

Having been interested in international trade for a long time now I have been reading your blog and find it informative.  I live upstate (wine country) but have not been able to focus in on a product.  
***I am working on a pre-requisite explanation video to assist people in gaining focus.  it is a very common concern...***
While food/wine seems interesting I wonder if there are other areas where volume/margins are better??? 
***there is a categorical error here...  volumes and margins have nothing to do with whether you should trade in an item...***
Do you cover focusing in on other sectors or do you more or less focus on food sectors?
***I have the general import/export class and the specific food export class.***
I am trying to learn how to identify products/markets  and function as a middle man.
*** This I teach: the most important thing in business is the customer, the hardest thing is getting the product or service right.  And the customer is the only judge if the product or service is right.  There is no other source for information on that.  Research on where those customers are, once you focus, is part of the work***
 I had reached out to SCORE in the past but the two advisors I spoke to, who had been involved in international trade, were very negative and repeatedly stated there is no place for a middle man in international trade in todays world! Any thoughts?
***SCORE stands for Service Corps of Retired Executives.  That accurately reflects the help, that is executives, managers in established business.  Great info if you have problems with an ongoing business.  It is not the "Service Corps of Retired Entrepreneurs."  Entrepreneurs do not retire.  The retirement plan for entrepreneurs is to grab the chest and drop dead mid-sentence.  Score is a great place to talk over problems in established businesses, but not for entrepreneurial work.

Having said that, how do you define "middle man?"  Perhaps he was rejecting your definition of one, and I very well might agree.  But there is plenty of work to be done getting ice cream produced in Oregon on the shelves in shops in Hong Kong.  You do not get there by becoming an middle man, you get there by becoming ice cream.  You are the product.
I am originally from (overseas) but have not been able to target in on markets. 
***There are two parts, regardless of your origin:  the product (you) and the customer.  I teach finding both...***


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