6 Tips for a Startup Business in the Valley


With CM Institute of Leadership and Grind Coffee Co.

There’s no question that owning a startup business comes with a fair share of ups and downs. But over the years the Valley has grown immensely, bringing about a multitude of opportunities to expand on artisan trends like coffee shops, breweries, and other handcrafted products. Customers are looking for quality creations and entrepreneurs have just the solution. Besides being an expert in your industry or your product, it takes purposeful business strategy planning to make sure your startup is a success.

“Being a business owner is overwhelming, to say the least, but I must persevere, because this is what I believe in,” says Sergio Treviño, co-owner of Grind Coffee Co., who shares the surprising wave of ups and downs that comes with owning a business.

And while there are many downsides with any startup, there is an ocean of opportunity that comes with those who properly plan and strive for success through the trials. Changing your perception on business is among one of the first adjustments most beginning business owners have to make, and “you will definitely be successful,” according to Michael Wilson, chief operating officer of CM Institute of Leadership in McAllen.

CM Institute of Leadership offers leadership programs to patrons looking to pursue a startup. The programs identify the key elements of successful entrepreneurship and offer intensive step-by-step training on how to cultivate a thriving business.

According to the CM Institute of Leadership, success starts with six mental shifts and life applications that bring about advancement and guaranteed progress to the beginning entrepreneur — which also happen to be the same things that cause a business to fail if not accomplished accordingly.

1. Scarcity Mentality (Don’t have it):  A lot of times, business owners fear employees, competitors, colleagues, or even clients are going to steal their trade secrets. They mistakenly create a bubble where they don’t share or collaborate with other people. What happens in this situation, especially with their employees, is that it prevents creativity — ultimately hindering the business. Some businesses will actually close down because owners will stifle their employees’ creativity. “Scarcity mentality is one of the most dangerous things you can do to your business,” said Wilson, who says he’s encouraged competitors to work together and doing so has had a positive impact on raising clientele. “You have to open up and not fear and have the mentality that there’s a lot of business to go around.”

2. Collaboration: Business owners need to surround themselves with like-minded people who own an established and successful business. To ensure the success of your business, you have to receive a consistent flow of knowledge and wisdom. It is imperative “to protect yourself from individuals who are naysayers, who have never been through the trenches of business ownership,” Wilson said.

Having a healthy collaboration with others will help grow your business. Grind Coffee  

Co. touts the creativity that blossoms when people team up to do business together.

“We pride ourselves in providing a space where people can catapult their ideas and  

build a community of like-minded individuals. This is how we truly are revolutionizing

the Valley,” Treviño said.

3. Building your Social Network: CM Institute of Leadership has coined the equation “Net worth=Network,” because according to Grant Cardone in his book “The 10x Rule,” “The key element when you first start your business is to be omnipresent.” This quote implies to show your face and your business everywhere. This can be done by attending business and networking events, conferences, and trade shows to meet new people. “Attend anything where you’re face to face with a potential client,” Wilson said. “The more you build your network the more you build social capital. More resources, opportunity, ventures, and doors will open for you.”

A fledgling business will initially invest in traditional marketing and advertising strategies to create a brand name and get new customers. But when you build a strong business network, you will eventually notice a constant flow of customers and referrals coming in. In time, you will get to cut unnecessary costs of heavy advertising since you will have a strong “word-of-mouth” market creating a healthy “social capital” for your business.

4. Mental Attitude: When entrepreneurs start their business, they’re really excited, but they sometimes unknowingly have failure in mind by saying things like, “I don’t think this is going to be successful;” “I hope I can get some clients;” “this is a scary market;” or “what if clients don’t like my services or product?” It’s important to recognize that the conscious mind feeds the subconscious mind. Every business owner will go through hard times, but the attitude entrepreneurs have toward their businesses can make or break them.

“We’ve been able to do so much for our community in the past two years, but none of it  

has been easy,” Treviño said about Grind Coffee Co. “The sleepless nights, the 14-hour

shifts, the neglected relationships, the continued stress, and the ever-exhausting

physical toll on our bodies are just some drawbacks we’ve encountered while trying to

build this beautiful space and follow this beautiful dream. But I know that if I can do it,

and show others that I can, they will know they can do it, as well.”

5. Self-Care: “What you put in your mouth and your mind affects the success of your business,” Wilson said. Someone who eats properly and exercises can handle stress without over-exhausting their body when tough times come. And when someone fuels their mind with meaningful books instead of watching monotonous videos on YouTube, they will sprout inspiration and creativity.

6. Dominating the Market:  A common mistake for startups is emulating their competitors too closely. Another problem is when a business will lower the prices of their products and services as a way of challenging their competitors. In turn, they end up undervaluing themselves and their product or service, and in the long run, hurt the market. People actually find more value in a product that is moderately priced. They perceive value in the products and services. It’s important as a business owner to perceive your business as valuable — if you don’t, potential customers will undervalue you. “If someone was giving seminars for free, people would perceive it as cheap, but if you sold it for $900, someone would say, ‘Hey this service has value, we need to go see this guy,’” Wilson said. “We gotta make sure we give the perception of value.”  


If you simply be yourself and don’t worry about the prices of your competitors, you will dominate the market by being genuine about your vision and striving to be the company you want to be.

“I encourage everyone to dream, but to also really think about what your dream truly entails: the money, the time, the effort, and the knowledge it takes to achieve,” Treviño said. “If that dream is still nagging at your very core, join me in this fight of doing what you were meant to do, and being who you were meant to be. Break out of just working for money, comfort, and not pushing your boundaries so you can reach your full potential.”

If you are looking for ways to grow as a starting business owner or for other leadership opportunities, visit the CM Institute of Leadership, located at 1409 S. 9th St. Edinburg. Call (956) 215-7615 or visit www.cminstituteleadership.com.

Or if you’re looking to collaborate with other business owners over a delicious, farm-to-cup coffee, visit Grind Coffee Co. at 315 W. University Drive, Edinburg.