Haven’t you heard? All of the cool kids are starting a business these days! Sometimes they even passively aggressively bash W-2 earners. As if they’re in an elite club that makes them better than employees. For the record, I AM an entrepreneur. I run my own writing and editing firm and am here for anyone who needs help bringing a project to life.
But I understand something. Running a business isn’t for everybody. It’s a life changing decision whether you do it part timer or full time. Anyone can come up with an idea for a business and even start it. But can you sustain what you started? If you’re thinking of becoming an entrepreneur, you may want to reconsider if…
YOU DON’T HAVE THE PASSION
This business idea that you have…are you passionate about it? If you’re selling a product – why? Did it personally change your life? If not, this could just be a phase for you. If you’re selling a service – why? Do you really plan to improve the lives of your potential clients or does it just seem like a good idea for one reason or another?
If you don’t feel a burning desire inside for your business then you probably won’t succeed. Remember that success means different things to different people. Your business could wind up being very lucrative meanwhile you’re dying a slow death on the inside because you hate what you do. Or the business takes up too much of your personal time. This is why passion is so important. Because being an entrepreneur is hard and it stretches you in ways you might not have even thought of. If you don’t have that burning desire inside it’s likely that you’ll get bored or overwhelmed and down goes the business.
YOU’RE DESPERATE FOR MONEY
Starting a business isn’t going to make you rich. On the contrary you should expect a financial loss for at least a year. The IRS expects your business to have a profit for 3 out of 5 years. If it doesn’t, they’ll start looking deeper and re-classify your business as a hobby. A hobby…OUCH! Even if you want to get into affiliate marketing there’s usually a cost that you have to pay to get in. Again – an initial loss. So now we’re back to point #1 in that you need a strong connection to the business that you’re running in order to keep it going until that loss transitions into profit.
YOU DON’T HAVE AN EDGE
What makes you different? You must have something that makes you stand out. Whatever it is that you’re selling I’m willing to bet you can go online and find another person selling the same thing. Look at Target and Wal-mart. They’re kind of like the same friggin’ store but they have differences that draw massive customers and allow them both to be successful. In the business world there’s enough room for everyone to grow! But what makes you special enough to build your own customer base? You need to be able to answer this question and build your business around it.
YOU’RE OVERLY SENSITIVE
When starting a business there are people who will say negative things. They won’t believe in you. And though it may be hurtful you need to remember that they don’t have to. You’re the only person who needs to believe in the vision that you have. You might get more business from strangers than your own family or friends. Would that bother you? What if you ask someone to share your business with their Facebook friends and they don’t do it? Will that hurt your feelings? If you promote yourself at an event and pass out business cards but gain no clients…will you go into a spiraling depression for the rest of the week? Sure entrepreneurs are still human. But good ones don’t crumble every time there’s some pressure or adversity. Do you have some negativity in your life that needs to go “bye bye” before starting your business? Here are some ways to do it. Read #6 twice and really let it sink in.
YOU WON’T PAY TO PLAY
Again I say that being an entrepreneur is going to cost you money! Business cards, estimated tax payments to the IRS, trademarks, websites, professional photos, advertising, getting a license to sell products. There are some things that you can’t get for free. Then there are things that you can get for free but shouldn’t. Your business won’t grow if you don’t grasp the idea that you have to spend money to make money.
YOU’RE A QUITTER
When things get hard you only have two options. You can keep going or you can quit. Entrepreneurs aren’t quitters. Maybe we’ll slow down but we don’t put out the torch. We ask for help if necessary. We cry from frustration. We have to remind ourselves why we started a business in the first place. We come up with a new idea if the one we have isn’t working anymore. We question our sanity. But we don’t quit!
So, do you believe that you have what it takes? If so, here are 4 rules that you need to break when starting your business.
Are you an entrepreneur? If not, what kind of business are you thinking of starting? If you are, please share a piece of advice about running a business!
Until next time…