If you’re tired of being a corporate drone and want to make it on your own, you need to have two things above all else: persistence and resilience. In today’s world, where recessions and economic meltdowns are common, you would need persistence to succeed. While the statistics paint a gloomy picture of their success, the start-up ecosystem has never looked better. Fresh ideas are taking shape everyday. Entrepreneurs are changing our world, one start-up at a time. So how do you beat the statistics and get your dream start-up off the ground? While there are a lot of factors that go into making a venture successful, here are ground rules that are absolutely essential.
1. Find your Mojo
If you want to make it as an entrepreneur- whether as a business selling a product or a service – it’s important that you are passionate about what you are doing. It sounds like a cliche, but cliches exist for a reason.If you’re passionate about what you’re doing, you would go the extra mile to make it work. There are highs and lows everyday but when you love what you are doing, you look past the lows. You are more inclined to come up with creative solutions to every challenge that comes your way.
2. Understand Your Market
Steve Jobs, one of the most admired entrepreneurs of our time, advised to create a need in the market and then satisfy it. While most of us may not be founding another Apple anytime soon, we can aim to make a prosperous business that fulfills existing needs.If you’re going to be offering a product or a service, you need to find a target demographic who will buy it. You need to do some research (you can use Census data and Google) to see exactly who will be buying your product and the size of the consumer base. Do other products exist that can do what your product does? Probably, yes. Would you have an edge over the competition? Yes you would, if your product is good enough and if you do your homework and prepare thoroughly.
3. Have a Business Plan
You can’t have a business without a business plan. Period. Most start-ups fail because they don’t have a concrete plan of action to follow. Here are some questions to ask yourself: Who is going to buy your product? How are you going to design your product? How are you going to market it? What do you expect from your product? How do you explain it to potential customers and investors? What are the steps you are going to follow to make your business succeed? A good business plan not only helps in answering these important questions but also helps in setting clear goals, priorities and strategies.
Here is a great post from Business News Daily with free Business plan templates to get you started.
4. Get the Job Done
Working for yourself and being your boss is a very romantic notion. But it doesn’t mean you can slack off. If you want your business to succeed, you are going to have to do the lion’s share of work yourself. That means being disciplined, dedicated and determined. The same rule applies when hiring, get folks who are doers and share your enthusiasm and vision.
Running a start-up can be a quite a roller coaster ride. It can give you sleepless nights and it can make you feel on top of the world. Get your basics rights and the challenges will turn into adventure. There is no bigger reward than watching your ideas take wings and make a difference.
Do you run your own business? Share your insights in the comments. I can’t wait to hear from you.
Suggested Reading:Mark Cuban’s 12 Rules for Startups Why 90% of Startups Fail [INFOGRAPHIC] The ‘Happiness’ Startup: Rules to Live By