Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Robert Dougan, founder, and president of RAD Potential Advisory Inc., located in Mississauga, ON, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
RAD Potential began with a mission to help companies take their hiring to a higher standard. We recognize that hiring the right people through effective recruitment strategies is critical to an organization's success.
We've consulted with hundreds of companies ranging from small/medium-size businesses to large enterprise clients such as major banks and insurance companies. Having worked with many of these companies for almost 20 years, it became apparent that some of these organizations did not have strong hiring practices or lacked the experience. Unfortunately, this came at a cost resulting in lower employee engagement, productivity, and higher than normal employee attrition.
RAD Potential's vision is to help organizations deliver a pragmatic and sustainable approach to hiring. Our value proposition is to ensure the right people, process, and technology are in place to empower leaders to build a recruitment function that works.
Tell us about yourself
For almost 20 years, I worked with a privately-held consulting firm where I helped clients in many ways, such as: running talent analytics and research, training and consulting in recruitment and positioning hiring technology with these companies. During my time there, I learned many skills. I was fortunate enough to work directly with senior executives from some of the largest companies in North America as well as other parts of the world. On this journey, I built a massive network of people worldwide and became very well respected in the industry as a talented professional.
As the pandemic hit our global community, I started to reflect on my career journey and where I wanted to be in the future. Did I want to continue to work under the same brand I had for almost 20 years, or did I want to explore other options? As I thought about it more, I recognized one thing, which was I still enjoyed what I did for a living, but I felt that I had reached a plateau working with this longtime firm. So in order to find new challenges for me in my career, do I go look for another job, or do I start my own company that complements my professional strengths as a business person? As the pandemic waned on into the second year, the answer became very clear I didn't think I could work for someone else. I always wanted to own my own business, and I was confident in my skills I developed over the last 20 years to succeed as a solopreneur...this is where RAD Potential was born.
RAD are actually my initials and a great play on words meaning to be "Excellent." Of course, I want other companies to achieve their true potential when it comes to hiring. This is why our tag line for our company is "How RAD do you want to be? Because this is what we are trying to help companies achieve when it comes to hiring best practices.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
Like any new business owner, my biggest success was getting our first client. Unfortunately, there are many businesses that don't even make a dollar, even with what they perceive as a great concept for the market. The fact that we have clients at such an early stage of our growth is such a big accomplishment that we are very proud of.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
The hardest part of being a business owner is the roller coaster of emotions you go through some days. Some days are great because you are speaking with prospects and clients and other days are quieter, and you can get lost in these thoughts, thinking, did I make the right decisions going down this path.
The other hard part of being a solopreneur is you do everything just like the name describes..."solo." When you work for a company, then you have resources at your disposal to carry out your job, but now you don't have these any longer, and it is your responsibility to do everything to make sure your business functions. You are the salesperson, the marketer, the bookkeeper, the website developer, admin assistant, etc. You do everything because you have to in order to survive.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Find something you love to do. I can't stress this enough! Many people come up with ideas, but that doesn't always translate into enjoyment. When you have a passion for doing something, this translates to your clients, and it also doesn't feel like a job.
- Be prepared to put the work in, and are you willing to pay the price for success. You are going to have to work hard and grind it out. The hardest part of starting a business is getting clients. Spend your energy doing things that will produce a high return on your business.
- Just Start. Most people want to get into business for themselves and talk about it but never start. The way I started was I came up with an idea, a name for the business, and made sure the URL was available. Once I did that, then I found the resources I needed to get started, and I began to build my business from there. It all starts with an idea, but how you execute that idea is where the business is born. Just start somewhere, or you'll always be talking about wanting to get into the business versus actually owning one.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
Be proud of your business, and don't be afraid to share it with others. It all starts with a dream, and it is your job to make it a reality. Never discount your network of people you know, and formulate the appropriate partnerships that make sense to help you grow your business. I've always found partnerships are the key to success with any business and the number one way to get referrals. Our mantra for our company is "How RAD do you want to be?" Let us help you reach your full potential. That's what we want to do...How can we make your hiring more effective.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email email@example.com; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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