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A lot of us dream of starting our very own business. While life as an entrepreneur is known to be very difficult as your income is determined by your efforts and ingenuity, it does have excellent rewards if you can pull it off. The path of entrepreneurship allows us to work on our own time and escape the 9-5 grind, stop depending on an employer for our income, and it also brings us more opportunities to progress in life as, again, our income is based on effort and ingenuity instead of time spent on a desk. That’s quite different from working very hard every day to just to make a lot of money SOMEBODY ELSE. Before you can start your business however, there are three things you need to increase your chances of success.
Three Things to Consider Before Building a Startup
While these three are often taught individually in business books, it was in Guy Kawasaki’s book, The Art of the Start 2.0, where I’ve seen these three grouped together. Your business won’t just need a good product, a business plan, or lots of capital, you’ll also need passion, expertise, and opportunity. Having all three of those are said to put you in a “sweet spot” within your market.
*By the way, Kawasaki picked up this idea from Mark Coopersmith, the coauthor of The Other “F” Word: How Smart Leaders, Teams, and Entrepreneurs Put Failure to Work.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned from success, business and leadership books, it’s that you must follow your passion. Build your business for something other than making money, and build it around something you’d love. If you’re not passionate about your work you might not last long. That’s especially true when you face the problems and obstacles that most (if not all) entrepreneurs face and if you aren’t seeing results as fast as you like (similar to what I’ve experienced during my first years blogging and writing). If you are passionate about your business however, you’re more likely to put in more effort and hours AND have fun doing it. You won’t need to wait for motivation when you have inspiration.
Kawasaki explained that this what you and your initial members can do. Are you capable of creating a good product? Can you build a business and run it well? Can you lead your team and your employees? Can you keep improving your product and your business systems? Are you able to market and distribute your product well? Can you scale and expand? Can you target new markets? All of it will depend on your expertise.
What if you DON’T have expertise? Well then, you can always LEARN IT! Remember what T. Harv Eker’s friend said: “If you’re not as successful as you’d like, it means there’s something you don’t know.”
Can you make billions of dollars in profit by selling ice to natives living in Antarctica? You most likely won’t. Before you build your business, you at least need to consider your options or opportunities. If you have a great product and you have little opportunity for it’s success, then your efforts won’t do you much good. At the very least, it will be an uphill climb. Kawasaki noted that you might not always know your opportunities. In those cases, he simply recommended that you believe in it and do what you must.
What opportunities do you have? Enough cash and expertise to start the business? Do you predict that a new trend will happen soon and your product can be the first to make use of it? It all depends. Even if you don’t see the opportunity clearly, you might as well make use of it when you can.
Building startups and becoming an entrepreneur is a path filled with many hazards. You need to be sharp and you need to learn how to follow your gut if you want to survive and thrive. When you have a high level of the three ingredients for your business, passion, expertise, and opportunity, you will likely increase your chances of success. If you don’t have them all, however, why don’t you develop what you have until you do?
Turn your business into your passion, develop yourself, your team, and your business until you have expertise, and keep adapting and changing until you are able to find and create and opportunity worth using. I hope the information within this article has been useful to you! If you want to learn more, you might want to read the two books below as they contain more information about the lesson here in this article.