By Sensei Serge Sognonvi and Carmen Sognonvi, originally published at http://www.urbandojo.com/blog
Urban Martial Arts is featured on Business News Daily, an online magazine about start-ups and small businesses, in an article titled Danger Ahead: Small Business Owners Warn of Common Mistakes.
In the story, we share how we recently avoided what could have been a disastrous plan to move into a larger space:
Thinking about an expansion: Husband-and-wife duo Carmen and Serge Sognonvi of Brooklyn, N.Y., recently escaped a costly expansion decision. Other mixed-martial arts school owners had suggested they find a bigger space because student enrollment at their school, Urban Martial Arts, has doubled in the past two years. The Sognonvis caught “expansion fever” and found a spot they loved. After careful consideration, they opted not to move.
“We realized that while the space was less than a mile away from our current location, it was a completely different neighborhood with different demographics, much less foot traffic, and it was too industrial and thus deserted in the evenings when most of our classes are,” she said, adding that moving could have been a complete disaster.
Her advice: Don’t get caught up in what others in your industry think is conventional wisdom, adapt to the realities of your local market and use the constraints you work under to get creative.
We learned a lot from this experience. The biggest lesson? You should always be open to taking advice from others in your industry, but don’t get swept away to the point where you lose sight of reality. At the end of the day, nobody knows your business as well as you do.