Does the idea of spending the rest of your life sitting in an office all day feel like dying a slow death?
Are you the outdoorsy type?
Or maybe just have a keen passion for the environment?
If you — or someone you know, said yes to any of these questions…
Or if you just want to hone your Business Idea Generation (B.I.G.) skills… you’ll love this next idea in our series…
In a quest toward more environmentally-friendly and natural solutions to lawn care and clearing unwanted vegetation, over the past decade a number of goat rental services have emerged.
Goats will eat nearly any plant, including thistles, brambles and poison ivy. Like cows, goats are ruminants – meaning they have four stomachs.
Which helps explain why Tammy Dunakin named her Seattle-area company Rent-A-Ruminant.
In addition to the usual residential gigs, Tammy’s herd of 120 goats has cleaned up areas underneath urban highways, along railroad tracks, and submarine bases.
Prior to turning them loose on a location, Tammy surveys the area to be cleared and puts up an electric fence to keep them corralled.
In addition to property owners, Tammy has wisely gone after local and state government contracts.
Running the Numbers
Rent-A-Ruminant charges $750 a day for an average assignment with a three-day minimum and a set-up fee/transportation charge of $350 to $500.
If you do the math, it looks like her goats need to work 93 days a year to gross six figures.
Interested in launching your own goat rental business?
Tammy is ramping up to sell franchise opportunities.
And get this – she’s working with Amazon as part of a beta trial for their new Home Services campaign! (Who says the “little guy” can’t play with the Big Kids?!)
Do It Your Way
Of course Rent-A-Ruminant isn’t the only goat game in town. Nor is it the only business model.
Obviously, not everyone has the space to keep goats. So, find another way!
That’s what Go Green Goat did.
Their business is run out of Duxbury, Massachusetts. But their goats live 20 minutes away at Colchester Farm in nearby Plympton – described as a beautiful 8-acre organic CSA farm run by New England Village with a mission of enabling adults living with intellectual disabilities to live with dignity and work at meaningful employment.
And unlike Tammy who stays with her herd during the day, Go Goat customers receive instructions on how to feed and water the goats themselves.
When my own neighbors needed some land cleared they brought in The Goat Girls.
In addition to brush clearing, the Amherst, Massachusetts company also offers on-site training classes for current or curious goat owners.
And unlike Tammy who is emphatic that she is not in the kids’ party business, The Goat Girls are all too happy to tap an additional income stream when they see one!
Next Steps For This — And All — Ideas
Have you noticed how when it comes to acting on our dream that the brains of otherwise intelligent, capable people suddenly turn to mush?
All the more so if you tend to become easily overwhelmed by lots of steps.
Here’s an exercise to “trick” the part of you that’s overwhelmed or afraid or just not sure where to begin.
Imagine your boss tells you to come up with a step-by-step plan for how an individual could start a goat grazing business.
Oh, and your boss needs your report ASAP!
Your first response might be, “OMG, I have no idea what to do!”
Yet, even with any initial brain fog or self-doubt (or both), the fact that your boss needs a plan, you’d figure it out to do it.
Am I right?
That’s when it can help to pretend you really were given this assignment and then figure it out!
- List all the things you’ll need to find out in order to complete your plan. Things like:
– the going price of a goat and where to find them
– what it costs to care for goats
– local ordinances for keeping goats
-local farms where you might board your goats
- Make a plan for how you’ll get these answers – will you look online? Start making phone calls?
- Next, list all things someone would need to learn or understand or do well in order to succeed in this business:
– basic bookkeeping
– customer service
- Then make a plan for how someone could gain the required knowledge or skills.
– Take a class or seek free 1-1 counseling from your state’s State Business Development Center or comparable program in the province or country where you live.
– Check in to a Rent-a-Ruminant franchise.
– Read Raising Goats for Dummies (yes there is an actual book!) or check out their cheat sheet.
- Once you have all the information you need, list the steps in the order they need to be to.Hint: You don’t have to do everything all at once!
Turning ideas into action isn’t complicated. All you need is a plan and the effort to carry it out!
Stay tuned for Self-Bossing IDEA #4 in our series Make Your Own Make Your Own Cool Job!
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We’d Love to Hear from You!
If you had to pick just one take away from this story…
- What would it be?
- How will you use it to advance your own path to self-bossing?