business Starting a commercial video production company

To follow up on my recent posts with others, I have been wanting to get into the movie business for over a decade, and I've been all talk and no lights, camera, action. Anyway, I was told a few years ago that commercials would be a good way to break into the business, and Jerry Bruckheimer did that, and companies like Filmation also broke into the business that way.

I was struggling at that time from the Great Recession, and it has taken this long to get over it. But my business is now doing nicely, so I have time to look at my dream again. I may also be looking to buy a second business in a few years, and my research into the video commercial business shows that it can provide stable earnings.

I will give some thoughts on business and invite discussion.

1) First and foremost, a business, like any human endeavour, must begin and end with people. Get the right cast and crew in place, and get the right type of customers. If you, the entrepreneur, have issues, like lack of experience or, even worse, anger management and drug abuse, then you are the wrong type and must become the right type of person. I have dealt with such people in my practice, so I have learned a great deal about not only business but life in general.

2) Your business plan must go through a stress test, as in put the idea through various tough situations, to ensure it can survive. If it cannot deal with problems, then it would be a lousy plan. Related to this are the cash flow issues - always, always make sure you have the funding, because a business will drain you initially.

3) Someone just starting out in his career should work for a few years at various companies - first in a large one, then a small one, to get the breath of experience. Then perhaps get some courses in business before going out. A senior professional like me, however, should not do that, because I already have a business. Someone like me should take over a company that is established and add value to it - if not that, then get experienced cast and crew who know what they're doing and can give the proper advice. Again, the quality of the people make the difference, so make sure they not only know what they're doing but are also reliable as people.

4) The larger the business or group of businesses, the more likely the senior management will not be able to do the actual work, because they have so many things to deal with. Lucille Ball apparently had that issue, as Desilu got bigger with Mannix and other TV shows - she had difficulty being the executive producer and being the star of "The Lucy Show". That would also be an issue for me, because I got into this to indulge in my creative urges, not just to run a business. But I'll cross that bridge if I ever get to it.

I look forward to your comments.