Entrepreneurship 101: Deciding if Having a Business is Right For You
Are you ready to dive into the world of entrepreneurship? The freedom, sense of triumph and the financial rewards of owning a successful business are enough incentives for one to let go of a secure job and start one’s own business. However, running a business entails a lot of things aside from having a winning business proposition.
Before you sink in your savings to starting a business, you should think carefully and examine yourself to see if you have what it takes. Here are some qualities you should have if you want to be an entrepreneur:
– Passion and Persistence. There will be high days and low days. There will be times when you will feel like throwing in the towel and going back to your 9 to 5 job and the security it entails. The cure for times like these is the firm belief that you have an idea that simply needs a little more time to take off. Passion will also help you keep on day-in and day-out, while avoiding the danger of burning out. A business is very much like a baby. You will need to take care of it and be on hand for decisions and trouble shooting sessions.
– Juggling skills. As an entrepreneur, you will need to wear a lot of hats especially at the beginning stages of your business. This means you will be purchaser, manager, extra hand at the cashier, accountant and more. The challenge is for you to be able to juggle these roles – and enjoy it. The juggling of these skills will prepare you for the growth years – since you will be able to learn every inch and corner of your business.
– Sales skills. Aside from knowing your market and how you can package and price your products, you also need to have the ability to build a customer list. If you want to establish a restaurant, you don’t just need to be a good cook. You also have to go out there, talk to your customers so that they will want to go back to your place over and over again. The same goes if you are a shopkeeper, a software developer or an online storeowner.
– People skills. To grow a business, you need to build a team and manage that team so that each member functions well. Progress will also require you to delegate. If you are a hands on person who needs to micro-manage everything, you will only hamper the growth of your business. Having more people that you can trust to do what you can do (or even do it better!) is undoubtedly a key ingredient to your business success. If you want a strong team, you will need people with strong personalities. One of your roles is to be the one who reins your people in when there are conflicts among your team or when pressure builds up because of deadlines. If you feel you don’t have the people skills, the good news is that you can also grow personally by reading up, talking to fellow entrepreneurs and attending management seminars.
– Decision-making skills. How good are you at making decisions? The decisions you will have to make will include a wide variety of issues. Where do you get financing? Do you go to the bank, use up all your savings or work with hard money funding? Do you have the property you can present as collateral? Where do you step up shop? Do you buy the property, lease or rent? Which applicant will you hire? Of course, you will make the wrong decisions along the way but this should not make you lose confidence in yourself as a decision-maker. Treat wrong decisions as opportunities to learn and grow.
– Access to funding. Aside from your personal kitty, how are you able to source funding. It is important to acknowledge that the first few months will turn out little or no profit. This means that you need to have a well to draw in when the cash register starts to run dry. Aside from getting loans from traditional sources, you can also look into non-traditional sources such as hard money funding or merchant cash advance.