Think Red Flags for Small Business with Walter Hill
How to Think Red Flags, a proactive and profitable approach for your small business, with entrepreneur Walter Hill.
We also explore Walter’s entrepreneurial journey, and his new book “Think Red Flags – A Proactive and Profitable Approach For Your Small Business” – which shares his method to help you avoid costly mistakes from which your business may not recover. This approach applies to your existing business and if you are planning to launch your first business as well.
Walter Hill is a passionate business leader and author with over forty years of business experience. A second-generation entrepreneur, Walter began learning the fundamentals of building a successful business at the age of nine with the guidance and support of his father.
Walter created Icon Blue, Inc. in 1998. Icon Blue became a leading Minority Business Enterprise provider of marketing solutions in the United States. In its first year of operations, Icon Blue was recognized as the African American Business of the Year. Icon Blue, Inc. was also recognized by Toyota, American Honda Motors, and Macy’s as Small Business of the Year noted for its exemplary service, ethics, and value that it consistently delivered for its clients.
Walter has been quoted in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today and a variety of other national publications. His television appearances include Good Morning America, Good Morning Virginia and Person-to-Person. And he just recently released his new book “Think Red Flags – A proactive and profitable approach for your small business”, which I have had an opportunity to review in preparation for this conversation.
Walter lives in Los Angeles, California.
Think Red Flags for Small Business with Walter Hill:
- Walter shares the influence of his father who was an owner of multiple businesses.
- “I had an absolute fear of failure.” Why? How to you use fear to your advantage?
- Experience with your first business selling pots & pans in Los Angeles…
- Walter shares the story of how he found the promotional products industry and launching Icon Blue in 1998.
- What does Icon Blue offer and are you still involved in this business today?
- Please introduce what you mean by “Red Flagging” – You ask “what if” questions to identify potential problems and devise a plan to avoid them.
- Is it about identifying what can possibly go wrong and mitigating instead of hoping for the best outcome?
- Please explain the Key Elements of Red Flagging:
- Intuition + Foresight -> Red Flag
- Please introduce the Matrix – part of the strategic plan that identifies how a business will execute its operations to achieve its objectives.
Outline of a process that serves as a guide to create efficient operations…
- What is the role of “luck”? “Choose prepared over lucky.”
- “Success is intentional. It doesn’t just happen.”
- “Red Flagging is a way of thinking, a mental process, that prepares you to anticipate the serious glitches in any task or routine that could derail your success.”
- How is this approach different from creating a system (a checklist or procedure)?
“An approach, not a system.”
- Would you please share an example of how Red Flagging may be used in small business? (Restaurant business, or a service business, may be a good example)
- How do you avoid analysis paralysis?
- Where do I start with “Red Flagging”?
- What advice do you offer someone who is thinking about starting their first business?
- What advice do you offer to existing small business owners?
Episode Host: Henry Lopez is a serial entrepreneur, small business coach, and the host of this episode of The How of Business podcast show – dedicated to helping you start, run and grow your small business.
Books mentioned in this episode:
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- Think Red Flags: A Proactive and Profitable Approach For Your Small Business by Walter Hill Jr.
- The Gift of Fear Paperback by Gavin de Becker
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