July '21

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G R A P H I C S - P R O. C O M 2 0 2 1 J U L Y G R A P H I C S P R O 2 7 suppliers is a doable (but not easy) ap- proach to building a profitable business. Building a business from products you design and produce is a much greater chal- lenge. You will want to explore industry suppliers' products where parts can be used to help build your design or perhaps can be substituted for one or more parts that you have been producing. The big benefit of using some or all industry-sup- plied parts is that the cost of production when making thousands in a factory is far less than your cost of making one or a small number at a time. THE TEST As a hobby, you created a great-looking product that everyone loves. It takes you about four hours to produce, and 15 min- utes to package for shipping. Your mate- rial cost is $12. You would like to earn $35 per hour to not only pay your bills, but pay for your investment in your laser and all the other supplies and equipment you need to make your product (while you are working out of your home). Based on this goal, you will have to charge $160.75. Can you charge this amount for your product? If not, you will need to greatly reduce the production time and perhaps find some pre-made parts from suppliers that you can substitute for parts you make. This exercise will help you figure out if pursuing a business venture is practical. If it is, consider beginning a business plan, however brief or thorough you can com- mit to. Your business plan will allow you to explore all aspects of a business whether part time or full time. EDUCATION You will have a lot of questions throughout this journey. There are many educational

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