When it comes to entrepreneurship, the advantages of starting right cannot be overemphasized, and many have learnt this the hard way. If you’re thinking of becoming an entrepreneur, save yourself unnecessary heartache by avoiding these potholes several entrepreneurs have pointed out:
1. Starting a business you’re not passionate about. The thought of making big money is not always enough to keep you through the waiting period and pull you through the rough times. You need persistence and focus as an entrepreneur, and passion is what fuels that. So choose a line of business you love. Unwavering passion for what you do will go a long way in pulling you up when the chips are down.
2. Attempting to learn everything before you start. The truth is, there are things you can only learn by doing business. Acquiring knowledge before venturing into entrepreneurship is good, but don’t let that hold you back from starting. Get your idea out of the cooler and start. The sooner you start, the sooner you can begin learning and improving.
Unwavering passion for what you do will go a long way in pulling you up when the chips are down.
3. Unwillingness to start small. The number of entrepreneurs who have started small will astound you. You don’t have to wait until you have huge capital. Start where you are, with what you have. The secret is to have a good product. When what you’re offering is good, you’re more than halfway there. Start small, act fast, and your business will grow.
4. Not reading. Education is not always about the classroom, and fulfilled business owners know this. They are forever learning and they read voraciously because knowledge is power. You never know which book, or even article, will change your business forever.
5. Trying to be a jack of all trades and master of none. Instead of putting your hand in several pies, locate a niche in the market where you can become an expert. Then focus on that and make yourself as visible as possible. Real estate tycoon Udo Okonjo calls this “monogamy in business” and it will help you a great deal.
6. Avoiding partnerships. Collaboration is the new competition. If you have the opportunity to partner with like-minded individuals or companies that can boost your business and take it to the next level, don’t let greed keep you from going for it. Sure you’d like the whole pie for yourself, but be honest with yourself about how a relevant partnership or collaboration can help your business. 100% of nothing, is nothing.
Collaboration is the new competition.
7. Not putting in the work. There’s truly no substitute for hard work. A successful business requires a lot of hard work and determination. You have to cut off or cut back on things that distract you, from toxic friendships and excessive sleep to social media and TV addictions. Face your work and give your best. People who have achieved and sustained greatness are those who, while others played and slept, showed up consistently, worked hard, made sacrifices and failed forward. Are you in it to win it? Go hard, or go home.