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    9 Replies Latest reply on Sep 21, 2009 2:46 PM by mouthjeweler

    Need help starting a business

    alaskagrown79 Newbie
      My husband and I are thinking of starting a business. We live in Alaska and he currently works for my dad who has a welding and fabrication business. My husband is a mechanic and we like the idea of opening our own business in a different city then where we currently live. We are ready to start thinking seriously about making this move, the only problem is we really don't know what to do. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
      Thank You
        • Re: Need help starting a business
          MoveForward Scout
          Will you be opening a place just like your father's or are you looking into a
          different type of business?
            • Re: Need help starting a business
              alaskagrown79 Newbie
              Well, my dad has a welding and fabrication company and they work primarily on diesel fuel trucks, pressure testing, welding cracks in the hulls, that kind of thing. My husband is a ground vehicle mechanic, ie he was trained to fix brakes, clutches, all the stuff that goes wrong on a regular car. Although we have not had a big sit down with my dad to talk about expanding to a different part of Alaska, I just don't know that he will want to. The idea, is for my husband to learn the business so when my parents are unable to work, or just decide that they are done, my husband can take over, basically they will give us their business to take over and keep, just provide them with enough of the profit for them to live comfortably. Seems like a great deal, but 1, we don't want to live in the town that the business is in, and 2, my husband does not really want the business. It is my dad's business, not what we want.
                • Re: Need help starting a business
                  MoveForward Scout

                  Your reply has brought a couple things to mind. Suggestions that
                  you may want to think about....

                  • Let's say your husband decides to go with your vision and he will
                  open the business in another location. Now it is time to speak to


                  the dad. I would suggest not making it a formal talk but an "off


                  the cuff" talk (not boxing your dad in). Simply ask him why he


                  never had additional locations within Alaska for his business. Do


                  not intereput him until he gets the full answer out. If it is in your


                  favor, then suggest you two opening one elsewhere.


                  • Let's say he agree's to do this. Can you afford to open this second


                  location. Rent overhead, tools, insurance, signage, advertising, etc.


                  This will all fall under your responsiblity.


                  • You may want to also think about the day your dad started the


                  business. All the money he has had to put into it. You may want


                  to re-think how you will own the business. Keep in mind he can


                  sell it to a stranger or his competitor or he can sell it you on


                  a great payment plan agreement.


                  • Most important re-read your last line of your respond. Listen to


                  your words..."my husband does not really want the business".


                  It won't work if he does not have his heart, sole and full being into


                  the business. In order for your dad's business to have become


                  successful he gave 24/7 into the business. Think about this...


                  if your husband's mom owned a florist, you worked with her and


                  you are learning how to put together funeral arrangements. Your
                  husband wants the both to open a second location and take over
                  your mom's florist business but you do not want the business,
                  how would this make you feel? Would you feel motivated each
                  morning to jump into the business side of your business? Will
                  you be successful not wanting to do this? Will you feel trapped?


                    • Re: Need help starting a business
                      alaskagrown79 Newbie
                      Thank You for the insight. That really does give me a lot to think about. The business that my dad has here is new. He had a commuter bush flying business for almost 30 years up here. For the most part it was very good and profitable to them. The last few years were rough and they were forced to close it. Two years later, my dad had opened this new business that has been incredibly profitable. He has the business R stamp certified, and is the only one in this region of Alaska that has that certification, therefor he gets trucks from everywhere including Canada. I don't know how well this business would do outside of Fairbanks. This part of Alaska is the part that gets VERY cold (30,40, even 50 degrees BELOW ZERO in the winter.) THis part of Alaska operates of diesel fuel and that is primarily the type of trucks he works on. The area of Alaska where we want to move back to operates of natural gas, so no need for diesel trucks. I want to research to see if there is a need down there, just not sure how to research. I would like to have all this done so if I go and talk to my dad about expanding, I have numbers to show him that this will work. In all reality, it would be easier to expand an existing business then to start from nothing. If we expand, then we can keep my dad's vision, but also be able to start doing some automotive work in the shop as well..... More insight please!!! :)

                        • Re: Need help starting a business
                          MoveForward Scout

                          Wish I was you! I love cold and snow!

                          I like the way you want to get all your ducks in
                          a row before speaking to your dad.

                          I have a contact within the Ancorage area, they
                          own a large equipment rental company would
                          this help you if I asked them your questions?
                          Is this area simular to the one you are speaking

                          Another way to find out is to contact the
                          "Chamber of Commerce" for the area you are looking
                          into. Ask for economic development representive.
                          Make a list of questions prior to contacting them.


                            • Re: Need help starting a business
                              alaskagrown79 Newbie
                              YES, that is the exact location! Actually, ideally the valley, Palmer or Wasilla area. My husband and I lived in Anchorage for many years, but came back up here so my husband could help my dad with the business. My dad is a bit older so although he is very skilled, he is not as able to do alot of the work. We are so fortunate that my dad has put all this time and effort and money into this business and will just give it to us to run when he is unable to, but staying in this region is not a long term option for us. Oh and 40 below is NO picnic! Imagine going outside and taking a breath of fresh air, that feels good right? Well when it is cold like that, that breath in causes your lungs to feel like they burn for thoses first few breaths!
                              I'm thinking too that we need to contact the current clients that my dad has to see if this is an option that they would use.
                              I will check out the state website too!

                              Thank You soooo much!
                                • Re: Need help starting a business
                                  MoveForward Scout
                                  I will get a hold of my Anchorage contact tommorow.
                                  And let them know your questions, I will get back
                                  to you with an answer (give me a week or so, I want
                                  to get to the owner who knows so much about the
                                  area, they love the area). I will respond here unless
                                  you want me to do so by email, then leave this
                                  information on this site.

                                  I would suggest you wait to speak to your current
                                  clients until you spoke to your father (would hate
                                  for them to be the one to leak this to him).

                                  Have a great week.
                      • Re: Need help starting a business
                        YesYouCan Scout
                        I'd recommend you read "Yes You Can Start And Run A Small Business" by Dick Bendtzen. A good read that is a how to guide to take you from dream to grand opening. Inexpensive and available on

                        Also suggest you check out my website, I can help get you started.
                        • Re: Need help starting a business
                          mouthjeweler Newbie
                          id suggest too study the service/product you will be providing
                          the quantaty of consumers you have per day hour week and month to stimate your profit unless you have the entrprenur in you already
                          also take note of how its done?
                          *how its delivered
                          *how its sold
                          *how does the ideal costumer look like?
                          *does he have easy acces to this service or product at certain times of the year ?
                          *what sort of situations or needs does the cunsumer must have in order to purchase your servise/product?
                          *what makes your business unique?
                          *whats your hook?..steppin foot in anopther city unless your are the only carrier od this service/product you will be steppin on toes?.though thats not a main focus keep in the back of your mind to help you perform.
                          *how will you build up your product or4 service to reealy penetrate the market?
                          *do you want to be profitable or staple?..there is a difference!
                          *How will you price your product or service?!***important**
                          whens the busyest time of the year?


                          ps out of time be back in a min.....