Do you really have what it takes to make it work?
I am thrilled to have an opportunity to spend a whole weekend mentoring budding young entrepreneurs at the end of the month. As I prepare for the weekend I reflect on what it takes to set up a business or practice and make it work. I have been in my own business for four and a half years now. Every day for me is an extraordinary day. I don’t see what I do as work and I am obsessed about getting my message to market that has people shift something for them in their life. That’s priceless.
The main reason we go into business is because we have an idea, product, service that we want to take to market and believe we can make it work. It sounds great when in planning mode because we have the security of a day job or supporting income from a significant other.
I see many of these ideas that fail – in fact in New Zealand over 50% of businesses don’t make it past the 2 year mark. Sad statistics especially as Kiwis are well known for our creativity and ingenious ideas that do have a place in the market.
Most of us start business to have more time, more money and others who can help us. The reality though is quite different.
So what does it really take to make the transition from being paid a salary to starting out in business and making it work?
1. Financial Security – you need access to some cash that can tide you over as you set out making the business work. You need to feel comfortable you can meet the financial commitments for more than 6 months. This allows you to focus on building your business.
2. Ferocious conviction – you have to believe in what you are doing. If there is ANY self doubt this will show up at every hurdle along the way. If you don’t believe in it no one else will. Don’t personalise everything. It will wear you down and you feel drained.
3. Spend Wisely on business tools – it’s easy to become overwhelmed with all the business tools out there and spend money unnecessarily. Make sure you have the bases covered – be able to invoice, understand how you will deliver the product or service, have an easy way that clients can communicate with you. Keep it simple.
4. Have a PLAN – You don’t need to have a 50 page business plan, it needs to be simple, clear and easy to implement. What is your message to market? Who is your target market and how do they want that message received? Pricing strategy and how you measure the goals are key to the success.
5. It’s all about the timing – You will either be a jump and do it kind of person or a more calculated move when you are ready. The challenge is always integrity. How do you stay motivated in a role that you know doesn’t serve you any more? It also takes time to make a business work. The first 2 years are the hardest.
6. Be Brave – Take the leap. It won’t be easy. There will be times when you just want to give it all away. It is somehow so much easier selling other people’s products or services than your own.
The power of your own business is that simply – it’s yours. You have taken on the risk to set it up. There are many learnings you take from it and it makes you stronger and more resilient as a person. The rewards are so worth it. Celebrate the wins – every single one of them.
7. Get out there and promote yourself – Surround yourself with the right people. Eliminate all the ones who say “you can’t do it or shouldn’t do it.” Surround yourself with people who want to support and guide you. They will become your biggest fan base.
Running your own business is not for everybody. AND that’s ok. Which takes me back to my first question; Are you really ready? Only you will know whether it is right or not right now or perhaps never.
Love to hear your updates for those of you who are stepping out on your own so leave your thoughts here.
Until next week