Very often in my Startup Entrepreneur Business Round Table Workshops, I get asked by young entrepreneurs to advice on what I consider the three key principles they could practice to keep their new businesses away from failing. After sharing these ideas with many, I thought that it would be useful to share them with you to with your startup.
“The critical ingredient is getting off your butt and doing something. It’s as simple as that. A lot of people have ideas, but there are few who decide to do something about them now. Not tomorrow. Not next week. But today. The true entrepreneur is a doer, not a dreamer.” – Nolan Bushnell
Starting a new business is adventurous and according to statistics, about 80% of new businesses fail within the first two years. Notwithstanding, 90% of businesses started by people who know what they are doing to sustain their businesses, are still growing five years after.
This note is meant to give you the key drivers that influence the success of the 90% of those startup businesses that succeed? It is important to bear in mind that successful entrepreneurs are not smarter than you; they are just ordinary people like who have discovered how to do what they are doing better than their competitors.
If you have done everything that is crucial to start a business, it is now time for you to live by the following three principles if you must succeed.
Successful business entrepreneur are intensely courageous in their ability to take risk with their time and money. Look at it this way; a client of mine had just started his new business and everything (business name, website, good service, etc) was just ready to go. My client was not brave enough to invest in advertisement and other means of marketing promotions to get his business out to his potential customers.
My client was afraid of typical advertisement and other business promotions, there is no guarantee that a particular medium (newspaper, magazine, Pay-Per-Click (PPC), or Search Engine Optimization (SEO)) would automatically pull in the required sales. So he began to play it safe rather than doing what was needful.
Would you be better off not advertising and take your startup business ideas for granted? No! You must have the courage to invest anyway, hoping and believing that it would work for you.
As business consultant & coach, my job is to help my clients to develop customized business strategies that spell out the critical steps and actions to take every single day to achieve their business goals faster. To be successful at this means that my clients must muster enough courage and discipline to implement the agreed strategic actions consistently until the results they expect shows up.
The 80% of people that quit their business ideas often discover that they became discouraged very quickly about the unusual long hours and unending problems that successful start up business owners go through. This should not be your case.
Persistence is the foundation of any business. Successful startups work hard, hard, hard, and they focus on the most important areas of their businesses long enough to achieve their goals. You must determine in your mind to work hard and take the necessary steps to do what is most important for you to be successful.
When I work with clients, one of the very roles I play is to help to clarify their visions for starting a new business. We spend time to understand their “WHYs”, the key drivers for starting the business and where they want to take their new business. This is crucial because, until you understand what is driving you into business, you may not appreciate the extent of involvement and sacrifice required you are required to make to become successful.
Determination also means that you must love your business and the products and services you are offering your customers. You must be passionate to share them with your prospective customers.
In the business of sports, it is often said that the time athletes, footballers, wrestlers and other sports people push really hard is when they are on the edge and hurting, when they’re most tired. Likewise in running a conventional business, persistence keeps you moving constantly forward and upward across the numerous obstacles and challenges you would normally encounter until you succeed. This is what happens with success, many times it comes when you are at the edge of giving up, when you had little or no breathe to push through.
If you are starting a new business, it takes an average of four to seven (4 -7) years of consistent hard work to become successful. The lesson to learn here is that success does not happen overnight. You have to be on the road long enough to master the trends and be able to see the patterns you are looking for. What keeps you long on that road is patience.
As in farming, you must understand the three fundamental stages of sowing, cultivating, and harvesting. These three stages are natural and successful startup business observes them.
After you have done everything else to startup your new business, (as in planting the seed), you must obey the natural law of cultivation, a process that is hard to explain except to say that it is a waiting period. You cannot jump from planting to harvesting; that would be tantamount to treating your new business as gambling; a process that looks for the easy way out.
Successful business people understand that the cultivation period is outside their control, and the best way to deal with anything that is outside someone’s control is to treat it patiently and calmly.
It may be true that you have taken reasonable steps to start up. Also, you may have invested in some of the best business building tools, and now the first three months have gone by with no customer knocking on your door. Another six months have gone past, yet nothing has happened instead, anxiety, doubts and worry are building up; don’t despair. Be patient, as long as you are doing the right things, you will make it.
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