Ive talked to people, and I do not know if it was for the first quarter of a new year or if theres more confidence in the economy, but Ive realized that many more people are looking to start their own businesses. As a business owner and social entrepreneurship, I think its a good thing.
Do you really want to be an entrepreneur?
The first question is the toughest, but you have to sit with it for a while. Ive talked to many people along the way who have started a business, and then fallen flat on their face and returned to a safe embrace of a 9 to 5 job. Being an entrepreneur is not as glamorous as it can be displayed.
Sure, you have a flexible schedule sometimes and is the ultimate decision maker on big and small decisions, but being an entrepreneur is not for everyone. The truth is that you will never work as hard as you do than when you are a business owner, especially in the early years. Twelve-hour plus days, including weekends, are not uncommon.
Being an entrepreneur means everything on you. You can get others to work with you. You can be one of the leaders that enables his professional team to be the professional they are, but as an entrepreneur, you are responsible for understanding all areas of your business sales, marketing, law, finance and accounting, administrative, marketing, research and development, product development, etc. It takes a lot of time to know all areas of your business and make sure they work properly. Its an endless process.
Do you really want to go shopping with your friends and family?
Many times, especially with small businesses, have you friends or family members decide to go shopping for together. Its a good idea to get into business with people you know and trust, but do you want to do it? If there is something that occurs, your relationships can be affected.
A good scenario is this you work 12 hours and do well in your areas of responsibility. Your business partner, and good friend, may not be as hard and as disciplined as you are and then anxiety will begin to build. It is a recipe for conflict and the likelihood that your business will survive with internal friction decreases exponentially with increased tension.
Another possibility is that you do not enter business with any friend or family as your partner, but you may decide to hire the same good friend as one of your first employees because you trust him. Again, what happens if you do not spend hours or work that you think is important for business success? There have been countless examples of business owners who collaborated or hired friends or family just to be in a situation where the business has suffered as well as the relationship from everything from work styles to fraud. It is very difficult to distinguish your business from your relationships without destroying them.
Determine if you are the muffin maker or business owner
Many people have a passion for something in their lives, and thats good. Maybe they love making muffins, or they love music and want to sell instruments. Whatever your passion or interest, if you have one, do not just do that work. As a business owner, the most important part of your business is a vision, sales, etc. and the track presented by the company in your business plan.
If you love to paint and you decide to open a color store, you will not spend your daylight. You will spend your day selling color, managing customers and managing the books. The same goes for cupcakes or even widgets. The companys owner who wants to grow his business will not be the exclusive muffins but also drive the business.
If you want to grow, you must focus on the total business. As a business owner, cupcake production, painting, music or widgets will be just one item, but its not really the deal. The business is marketing of your product, the price point, the finances, the customers, cash registers, accounts receivable and trade payables and wages etc.
In summary, I do not get wrong. For me, I would not change anything in the world for my life as an entrepreneur. I love being a business owner and digging in all parts of my companies and brands. Its refreshing, exciting and no day is the same. However, all business owners will tell you that the points mentioned earlier are necessary to see if the entrepreneurial track is really what you want.