When and how did I carry out my first, small business venture…?
Everyone loves money. And I was no different even at that age when I thought money was useful only to fill up my piggy bank. And filling it up fully was the only life goal under monetary category that one would have.
I had a small red colored miniature Post box shaped piggy bank. I used to hide it behind my old clothes on the top shelf of my cupboard. As a child, I thought that if I found it difficult to reach that spot then it was hard enough for anyone to find it. 😀
I usually never asked for things or stuff from my parents or anyone else, except for daily food needs. Toys, games, clothes, chocolates and ice-creams… I used to get them without any tantrum, or even demand. The reason was that I used to take great care of all my stuff. Even after all these years, I have got some of my stuff from childhood without any scratch. And due to this, my parents used to buy me things without my soliciting for it.
But I had strong preferences in things I accepted. They had to be best or of high value. I didn’t accept things that were cheaply made or were commonly found with every other child. Say for example, I didn’t accept toffees and cheap chocolates. I needed a 5-star instead. But still if someone would give me something that I didn’t quite like, I’ll put it to some good use, at least. Or I’ll give it to other kids when they come to my place to play with my toys, so that my other toys were not harmed. 😛
A fair (carnival) was set-up in our town. My dad and his friends were setting up a food stall in the carnival. And mother was probably gonna help them with that. I was bored at their stalls where we had to serve people the food instead of eating it ourselves. So, I used to sit at the nearby Toy stall. The person was a friend of my dad, so he let me sit there.
The carnival was gonna stay for five days. First day I just sat there looking at all the people who came to buy different toys. I understood one thing from that. For selling toys, we had to influence the kids and not the grownups. They would just do whatever the kids would obstinate for or do tantrum for.
I too wanted to sell stuff. I asked my parents to let me sell stuff in that toy stall. Our neighbors gave me a box full of whistles which were shaped like a-biscuit-thin-harmonica. All the reeds played the same tone, same whistle. I had a real harmonica back then, so I had no problem in selling them, as for me they were not of high standard. My neighbors didn’t accept any money from me for these. They wanted me to fulfill my desire of selling things in the carnival.
Next day, I came to the Toy stall with that box full of whistles. The store owner gave me a corner place just outside the store. I sat on a small chair in front of a small table on which I neatly stacked the whistles under rows of different colors. As I had no cost in acquiring the whistles, I thought 2 rupees would be an appropriate price for one whistle.
Families and kids used to pass from the toy store often. And kids would force their parents to visit the toy store to buy them some or other toy. Whenever some kid came in front of the store, I would play that whistle casually, without saying a word. The kid would instantly get lured of the whistle in my hand. I somehow managed to know how other kids were different from me and how they were easily tempted for things that they didn’t have and someone else had.
When the grownups would offer him things from the store, the kid would also point towards the tiny whistle thing that I was playing. And as it was way cheaper than the other things available in the toy store, the grownups wouldn’t hesitate incurring an additional expense.
Earlier I used to sell whistle to each customer of the toy store. Then slowly, kids came to the store only to buy my whistle. I slowly started to take over the business of the toy store owner. Kids were more interested in buying my whistle instead of his expensive toys, and parents too were not hesitant in buying their kids a cheap toy instead of shelling out more money on expensive toys.
I gave my last whistle to the toy store owner as a gift. In just three days, I sold all the whistles in stock and enjoyed the satisfaction of having my piggy bank full. 🙂 I was so happy that I showed it to all. I opened the lid of the miniature post box and showed them that it was full till the brim. The toy owner too said to my dad “This kid took away whole of my business with his tiny whistles!”
Later I found out that the whole box of whistle had cost my neighbors only Rs. 20. And there were some 40-50 whistles in the box, which I sold each at a price of Rs. 2. And I didn’t even had to incur the initial cost of Rs. 20, so my clear profit was full Rs. 80-100!
That was my first ever business venture at an age of around 9. And I was so happy…
P.s.: And now I feel ridiculous at work.