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My First Business
What is up everyone! Mike Rosko here! Welcome to my blog! I’m so excited for this blog post because for those of you tuned into episode one, this is a sequel of my first blog!
And it’s kind of like the follow up of my first valuable lesson. So for those of you who got the chance to read my blog post, First Valuable Lesson, you’ll understand that that story that I told in it was my first “A-ha” moment about money occurred.
That event that took place gave me that motivation to just want more money and it was kind of just my gateway to that bigger picture. So anyway, let me get started…
So after I had that moment, I still continued to do all of those side jobs, just so I had some source of income. Like I said, my mom had taught me at a young age that I had to work for my money!
But when I hit the age of 12 I actually started to make money babysitting.
And it’s actually pretty funny because back then I only got paid $4 an hour to babysit, sometimes six. But honestly, I really didn’t care as long as I was making money. And at that age, I mean I couldn’t get a real job, I was too young.
I’m not sure about other states, but you can’t get a job until you’re 16, so I just decided to start babysitting for now. It’s funny cause my mom always taught me to save, save, save money and literally imprinted it into my brain. I always to this day… Think about the grocery store story.
I always think, man if I could just keep saving money, I’m just going to have more and more and more and I can finally buy something that I really wanted. But anyway, so around that age, you know, I just babysat and I did a bunch of side jobs as I’ve explained before, such as mowing the lawn, cleaning houses, whatever anybody offered me I would do just to make money.
I was really content with what I was doing. But it’s actually pretty funny. It all started in middle school when I had this new opportunity where I didn’t even realize I had until a mistake had happened…
Now, for most of you who know me, you know I’m a huge sports fan. So one day, my friend, he comes up to me in school and he’s like, “Hey listen, I know you love sports. Myy dad found this website online and they sell NBA and NFL jerseys for super cheap, like I mean cheap, like $20 cheap.”
And I’m like, “Oh my God, these jerseys are usually going for $60 to $100 dollars a pop! Like do they look real? And he’s like, “Man, they’re stitched and everything and they look authentic, but they’re from China. So they’re not truly authentic.”
So I pause and start to think… and look up at him and say, “Yeah, you know what? I’m interested.” I mean, I definitely want to buy a Jersey if I’m going to get it for that cheap.
Now this goes back to the my previous blog post, where that valuable lesson taught me value. If I can get something for a fifth of the price, a quarter of the price, I’m definitely gonna buy it, especially if it’s my passion.
First “Business Connection”
So we were standing by my locker and he was like, “You have a pen and piece of paper, I’m going to write down their website and I’m going to give you my number. I want you to check out the website. I’m going to wear one of the jerseys I got from this website tomorrow that way you can take a look, see how good it looks. They’re awesome. I’m telling you, they’re awesome!”
Immediately, I scrambled for a pen and paper if I’m whatever I could. And I’m like, in my head, man, this is so sweet. Like I can finally get jerseys for super cheap.
I was so excited. So I handed my friend the pen and paper. He puts the paper and pen up against the locker and he writes the website and his phone number and hands me the piece of paper and he said again, “Hey, listen, I want you to look on the website. I’ll wear Jersey tomorrow and you can let me know.”
Excited About the Purchase, Not the Hidden Opportunity
So all I’m thinking about the entire school days, oh man, there’s so many players I want! Who am I going to choose?!?! I just got that rush of excitement.
So anyway, the school day ends, I get off the bus, run to my house and immediately hop on my computer. I take a look at the piece of paper typed in the website.
I go through the site and I’m like, oh my God, this is so sweet! I swear I must’ve spent hours on this website. I clicked on every team. You know, I wanted some basketball jerseys, football jerseys, baseball jerseys, but I was like, I should really just get one for now. I just want to make sure you know it’s perfect.
So I run through every team again and I’m like, “Oh yes!” aloud. I get to the Sacramento Kings and I’m like, this is it. this is what I want…
Jason Williams, for those of you who don’t know who White Chocolate is, you need to watch his mix tape on YouTube. The man’s passes, were unreal…
I mean, I’m not going to just sit here and describe them, just go on YouTube and just type in Jason Williams mix tape…
Anyway, I just remember just sitting there. I’m like, hmm, do I want the black jersey or the purple one? I definitely don’t want white but I shuffled back and forth in my head… black, purple, black, purple…
Sneak Peak of the Product
So the next day at school, my friend comes in wearing this awesome
Steve Francis Blue Retro Jersey and for those of you who know that Jersey’s awesome and I’ll actually post the picture below showing you what jersey I’m referencing. But honestly that is one of my favorite jerseys.
I knew at some point I had to get this jersey too and I actually do have that jersey now. But anyway, I’m analyzing it, it’s stitched, it looks so real. And I’m like to my friend, “Okay, that’s it. You got me sold, you know, I’m definitely going to get a jersey.”
First Test Purchase
I told him, I’m like, “Listen, I want either purple or black, Jason Williams Sacramento Kings jersey.” And he’s replied, “Alright, awesome. Because my dad is one jersey short of getting free shipping.” Keep in mind, when you ordered professional sports jerseys from China back then, you would have to order 12 jerseys in order for them to ship to you for free.
I said to him with excitement, “Awesome, perfect I’m the 12th jersey. Just get me a Jason Williams Kings jersey please! I’ll have the money for you first thing tomorrow!”
I think most of the NBA jerseys on the website were $28 at the time. Now keep in mind authentic NBA jerseys, if you bought them on NBA.com, they sold anywhere between $60 to $100. Even though they weren’t authentic, they looked authentic. They looked exactly the same. So I had no problem coughing of $28 for the jersey.
A week or so goes by and I’m like, alright, awesome, as he comes up to me and he’s like, “Hey, listen, we had a little bit of a problem with your jersey. I spoke with customer service and they only had the white one in stock in your size.”
I went from excitement to disappointment and replied, “Oh, you have got to be kidding me. Like that’s the only one I didn’t want. Can you just cancel it and I’ll get a different jersey instead.” My replied, “Dude, I’m sorry, I can’t. They already sent the order.”
Reluctantly I say, “Oh, all right, whatever. You know, I’m getting a jersey, I’ll just buy a black or purple one later on.” Another week goes by and the shipment comes in and I still remember how excited I was. You know, I wasn’t as excited as I should have been, I was a tad bit disappointed, but you know, it’s still an authentic looking jersey, so I was still super excited.
I see my friend that morning and he’s says to me, “Yeah, I have it in my locker. Just stop by on your way to the bus.” I reply, “Yes! Alright, cool! So I stopped by his locker and he turns, he hands me this beautifully plastic wrapped Jersey that was folded perfectly.
And the feeling was just like when you were younger and you just got that perfect Christmas gift when you unwrapped it and you’re like, oh, this is awesome. I’m so happy right now. As soon as I got home, I tried it on! Let’s just say, it was awesome!
A couple months go by and my friend comes up to me at school, “Hey listen, my dad’s putting in another order. You want to order something?”
“I’m like, yeah dude, of course! I’ll call you tonight. I just want to go home, take a look at the website again and I’m going to tell you what I want. Is it cool if I get more than one this time?”
He’s like, “Yeah, get as you can get as many as you want. Just make sure you pay me prior to us ordering. So I want the money by tomorrow.” “Perfect!” I replied. Obviously I had the money because I’ve been babysitting and doing random side jobs. So I had the money. Again, I went home, hopped on my computer and began searching for hours…
I remember thinking, “You know what? I want the black J-Will jersey… I don’t care if I just bought the white one, I want the black one.” I made a list of jerseys I wanted him to order. It was like five or six I forget how much it was, but there was a couple NFL and there were like four NBA.
I got that same feeling of excitement again! So, I called them up. And I said, “Hey listen, these are the ones I want. If they don’t have anything in stock, just let me know. And he’s like, sounds good dude.” Luckily this time, everything I wanted was in stock!
The shipment arrives 2 weeks later and my friend hands me a box full of jerseys. So I go home, open the box, and again, I get that feeling. I was like, this is so awesome! I see all the jerseys.
I’m like, this is so sweet!
First Thought Of Selling!
I had the white J-Will Jersey hanging up to the left and I remember thinking, hmm, maybe I’ll try to sell this white jersey since I had just gotten the black one. Yeah… I’ll try to sell it…
Now, keep in mind, Jason Williams wasn’t like a huge star or anything, but if you’re a basketball fan, you know who he is. Like his passing was absolutely insane. His game was so crafty. He was just so fun to watch.
So I go to school the next day and I go up to all the people that I knew that were huge NBA fans and I approached them, “Hey listen, I got a white J- Will Sacramento Kings jersey, would you be interested in buying it?” I must have asked at least 15 people over the course of a week!
“My friend’s dad gets the stitched NBA and NFL jerseys for cheap. I’ll sell you this brand new stitched white J-Will Jersey for 25 bucks! That’s it!” You know, I got some interest, but still again, like I said, J-Will wasn’t like this huge star that everybody wanted.
Now, I play point guard so to me personally, Jason Williams was like awesome, you know? But anyway, I must’ve went through at least 15 people and they all said no. And I thought to myself, “I guess I’ll just keep this jersey. I mean, what if something happens to my black Jersey anyway? I mean I’ll just keep the white. It’s cool.”
Went Right Over My Head
It’s actually pretty funny because I actually still have the jersey at this time AND I still have the black jersey! At first this one incident went right over my head…
Like I thought nothing of it…
But then I woke up a couple months later, I remember just laying in bed staring at my white ceiling and just thinking…
Put 2 And 2 Together
“Wait a second… my friend’s dad gets these jerseys for cheap. Why don’t I just sell them in school to people and make some money off of them?”…
My First Business Idea…
My First Crucial Business Epiphany…
It had hit me out of nowhere…
This has some serious potential… Everybody loves NBA jerseys, everybody loves NFL jerseys, and people like MLB jerseys. … And I know how to get some brand new stitched authentic looking jerseys…
I Had A “Business”
I could be selling these jerseys in school and making money. Now this goes back to my first valuable lesson post, where I was always trying to find ways to make money. This opportunity was right in front of my eyes and it took me MONTHS to realize it!
Figuring Out The Plan…
Now, this was when I was like, man, like this has huge potential. So I was just laying in bed staring at my wall and just thinking of a plan, I just wanted to just make more money. Like I knew the upside in this. Everybody wanted jerseys, what can I do?
So obviously I could sell in school, but should I just buy a bunch of jerseys and try to sell them or should I reach out to each individual person and say, “Hey listen, my friend’s dad gets these stitched brand new jerseys for cheap. Would you be interested in getting them as well?” and actually telling them that, so they could pick whatever jersey they wanted. That way I can just go home, go on the website, see if they had it and get back to them.
I Chose Option B…
So that’s what I did. I chose NOT to buy in bulk of the same jersey like Darelle Revis or LeBron James or Derrick Rose, Kobe Bryant, you know all the super stars. I thought it would be better if I just asked people what they wanted,
So I practiced what I was going to say to everyone, “Hey, if you had the choice, what would you want? Like, if I was able to get a stitched jersey for you of who ever you want it, I’ll sell NFL for $40, NBA for $50.” Most of them replied, “No way! You can get those jerseys that cheap?!?! Those things usually cost between $60 and $100 dollars! You can really get me a stitched so and so for only $40?!?”
I’m like, “Yeah! Just name the player you want! Name the color of Jersey you want! And I’ll go get it for you!”
My First Customer
And I remember the very first client I got, he was friend of mine. Actually, if he’s listening to this… I apologize in public for this! Hahahaha!
I was like, “You told me you wanted me to get you a jersey, which one did you want?” And he’s like, “I want to Steve Smith.” And I’m like, “Awesome dude, I love Steve Smith! I’ll get it for you! What color do you want?” “Blue!” And I’m like, “Okay, cool!”
I continued, “So it’s funny when you pick your sizes, they don’t go by like extra large and extra, extra large, large, medium, etc. They actually use a number system. I’ll get your jersey, but do you know what number you happen to be?” And he’s like, “Oh, honestly I have no idea. You know, I just usually buy an extra large.” I reply, “Alright, sweet!”
So when I got home, I checked on the website and I had finally put together a list of what I wanted. So I called my friend’s Dad. I told him what I wanted, “I want this, this, this, this, and I put my order in.
Proceeding on I stated, “Hey, can you also get a Steve Smith blue size 54? I will give your son all the money tomorrow morning at school.” And he’s like, “Oh, okay, perfect!” And he put in the order.
My First Sale Went Wrong…
Two weeks later to shipment comes, I hand over this perfectly wrapped, perfectly folded Jersey to my friend. He gives me 40 bucks. Both of us were sooo excited! In my head I’m thinking, “Dude, this is awesome. I just made like $15 profit on this 1 jersey and I didn’t even do anything really!”
As usual, I go into school the next morning and see my friend (the one I sold the jersey to) very early in the morning. We used to have to wake up at like 5 A.M., so you know I was so tired as usual. But I noticed my friend isn’t wearing the jersey! Immediately I thought maybe it was because he didn’t wash it.
Out of curiosity I asked him, “Hey dude, you said you were going to wear the jersey today. Why didn’t you wear it? You were so excited when I handed it to you!”
He’s like, ” My dude, it’s a size 54. It’s like I’m wearing a dress…”
My sense of curiousity suddenly turned into that “Oh no.. feeling…”
I had gotten the size wrong…
For those of you who know the number system of sizing, a size 54 is like an XXXL…
That wasn’t the only issue… the Jersey was white, not blue…
I messed up…
I was really excited just yesterday and was so proud of myself that I made my first “sale”I was so excited over the $15 profit I had made. I was so proud of myself that I thought of this business idea, just so I can screw up my first sale…
Fix The Problem
So immediately, I offered him a refund, especially since he was my friend.
But he declined, “Oh no, it’s cool man. I’ll just tuck it in, you know, it’ll be cool. It’s, it’s really not a big deal.” But I could obviously sense the disappointment in his voice.
But that’s when I realized..,
I really have to pay attention to the color and size…
I have to pay attention to my customers. Without customers, I wouldn’t have a business. Customers are the most important part of a business!
Especially since this was the second time that an order got messed up…
But I had learned…
I actually never made that mistake again!
It was definitely a lesson learned! It woke me up, if I was going to make money off of something, I need to deliver a product that my customers would want. It needs to be high quality! I just want my friends and my high school acquaintances to just feel the same feeling of excitement that I got when I got my first jersey!
So I knew I wasn’t going to screw that up again!
So that was like the first sense of business. I had made some profit and I knew I had something big… something with huge potential…
But now I’m going to stop this story here because there’s actually more to it! I want to break it up into two blog posts! So if you’re interested in reading up on the sequel to this story look for my next blog coming out tomorrow!
As most of you know, I’m trying to post every day, whether it’s a blog, YouTube, videos, podcasts, etc. Regardless, my goal is the post every day.
Keep in mind, my first few blogs are going to be like my backstory. I want to have everyone get a little bit of a feel of my background, as well as when I got my first taste of business, some valuable lessons I have learned!
But it’s kind of funny because I look at where I’m at today and I may have not realized that at the time, but these kinds of stories had like a huge impact on shaping me to who I am today and how far I have come!
Relate To Me!
Now I’m sure a lot of you have similar stories and similar experiences where you don’t even realize, but they’ve made you to who you are today.
You know, one thing that I really learned was I’ve just noticed this, that life is just one huge learning curve. Like every day, if you just try to get 1% better, even just 1 little baby step in the right direction, closer to your goals, you will see tons of progress over the years!
Try to learn something that’s actually useful that contributes to your personal development, it will go a long way.
Now I want you guys to just think back to like just little stories that may have had an impact to where you’ve gotten yourself today.
Enough of this babbling. I’m going to finish that second half of the story tomorrow so make sure to stop by and as always, thanks for reading! I really appreciate those of you have taken the time to read my blogs!
But I promise you these first few blogs of me telling you my backstory, has a purpose! Don’t worry, I will be giving you content that you can actually apply to life in any of your businesses soon!
Hopefully you guys make the decision to start your own online retail company because as most of you have probably figured out by now, retail is trending in the direction of more online-based.
I don’t want you guys to just be too late to the party! I want you guys to get ahead of everyone! Because there’s so much potential in it right now! But anyway, thanks again! Thanks for reading. I’ll talk to you soon!
Feel free to read my other post from the other day regarding an introduction as to what I teach my students: https://onlineretailsuccess.com/sell-big-name-brand-products/
If you want to follow my journey, stay tuned, follow me on social media mike_rosko_ and/or visit mikerosko.com to learn as much as possible about how you can start selling on Amazon and start a profitable online retail business!