Starting A Business: Being An Entrepreneur
Starting your own business is one of the most challenging journeys you can take in life. All business owners will tell you that there are ups and downs, highs and lows...and tremendous personal rewards.
Very few new business ideas are unique. It?s more than likely that you?ll be setting up in competition with other businesses, some of which will be established and doing well. Winning business from them won?t be easy, so to make a success of your new venture you?ll need to think about what makes you and your company special. What will persuade customers to come to you? What will make them buy and what will make them come back for more?
The answer starts with you. In the early days, your business will be very much a reflection of your personality and just getting through the start-up process will depend on your ability to handle all the issues that arise. Think about the skills you have to help you and to give your business an advantage. Make a thorough assessment of your weaknesses as well, but don?t be discouraged, nobody?s perfect! If you can think of areas to improve, gaining some new skills could turn out to be the trigger you need to get started on developing a new business. And if your weaknesses can?t be improved there are always ways of working round them.
Traditionally, entrepreneurial ability tended to focus on initiative, decision-making, innovation and risk-taking, defining the characteristics of those who chose to become entrepreneurs. Now, however, with corporate downsizing being a fact of life, many entrepreneurs find themselves thrust into the role by default.
Look at the following issues that will impact on your ability to be a successful entrepreneur and see how you can utilize these ideas to improve your chances of being and successful entrepreneur.
Be prepared to let go of what you have for who you can become.
This is the hardest one of all. Most of us were brought up to seek out and cling to the security of the 9-5 job. What happens when you mention to your family that you want to leave the security of your pension and go out on your own. They will probably advise you to be sure, to step carefully, to take your time. Some may even advise you against it completely. Are they financially independent? Did they have what it takes to go out on their own?
Are they living the life that they want? One way to avoid getting caught up in this security trap is to set a confirmed time that you will leave your job. Real worth and wealth is generated from within you. It comes from being prepared, knowing how to spot, act upon and capitalize from opportunities.
No time like the present
What do you want for your work? You want results. The results of your hard work are everything. You either succeed or fail. You make money or go under. Does this mean you should not get into daily routines? Of course not. As long as your routine is helping you get a profitable result, then they are not considered ruts, but pathways to success. Think of it this way. Efficiency is getting the job done right, Effectiveness is getting the right job done.
Focus on making more than just a living
If you are still an employee, you probably know how much you will be bringing home next week. But with your own business, you have to remember to focus on making a profit and that means high sales and low overhead. No one signs your check now. To survive you must be focused on how you will make a profit today, tomorrow and next week. You must find ways to keep costs down to the exception of affecting your profit making capabilities.
Look For Opportunity, Not Problems
In my book an entrepreneur is someone who sees solutions where other sees problems. You are an entrepreneur because others are prepared to pay you to solve their problems. Remember this is your day to day work and your mind set as an entrepreneur. The entrepreneurs mind set says 'What If' not 'yes but'
Focus on the wants and needs of your clients - not yours
What it all comes down to. Knowing the who, what, where and why of your target customers. The success of your business is not the sum total of the knowledge you have gained, it still is and always will be, the "sale". Success is determined by what products sell and how well they sell. It isn't what you know that counts, it's what your customers want. If you lose sight of this fact, you are doomed to failure. Never lose sight of the fact that marketing your customers' wants is your number one priority.
Keep your eye on the bigger picture
Never lose sight of your end goal or your dream of success. Where do you want to be in ten years? What do you want to be doing? I know how hard it is trying to get the daily job done sometimes, but keep your vision alive and let it steer you in your search for success. Let it be the drive that keeps you going. Every morning before you start, do something that will bring you a little closer to your dream.
Lets face it, if it were easy, everybody would succeed. To succeed you must dedicate yourself to doing what needs done not working on the clock. You must have the patience and persistence to tough out the hard times, and oh yes, there are hard times. Be prepared to sacrifice your time and too often your social and personal life in the pursuit of success.
About the Author: Learn more at http://www.my1stbusiness.com/sales-letter/landing2.htm
Ben Botes MSc. MBA, is an Entrepreneur, Speaker, Writer, Coach and academic. He is the founder of My1stBusiness.com, South African Business Hubs Join the My1stbusiness.com Reseller Program and earn 40% referral commission http://www.my1stbusiness.com/affiliate
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