Dos and Don’ts For First Time Entrepreneurs

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There’s no doubt that when it comes to jobs and careers the deck is stacked against the millennial generation. No matter how well educated millennials are and no matter how much of their lives they waste on unpaid internships they can find the doors to opportunity slammed shut in their faces time after time after time. When they are afforded an entry-level position they face a culture of wage repression and career frustration. Is it any wonder why so many young people eschew the conventional career path trodden by their parents for a life of entrepreneurship.

Sure, setting up your own business takes a lot of hard work and effort, but millennials are a hardworking and industrious breed. Sure, there’s a chance that they could fail… But at least they’d fail on their own terms. While there’s no right or wrong way to start or run your own business, there are still some dos and don’ts that will stand you in good stead if you’re serious about setting up a business of your very own.

DO- Put passion before profits

There’s absolutely no point in setting up a business if you’re not passionate about it. If you view a business as essentially a get rich quick scheme, you’re doomed to either fail, be miserable or both. If you pursue entrepreneurship in a field you love and are passionate about you will not only stand a greater chance of success, your passion will be able to pull you through the inevitable trials and challenges with a smile on your face.

DON’T- Neglect strategy

Running your own business keeps you extremely busy. With so many operational plates to spin it can seem as though you spend every hour of the day on the front lines with your team and barely get the chance to even visit your office. Yet, this can wind up doing more harm than good.

DO- Listen to podcasts and audiobooks to learn more

There’s an absolute plethora of sage advice out there for people who want to run your own businesses from innumerable business books to blogs just like ours. But let’s be honest, here, how many of that enormous tower of business books on your nightstand have you actually read? How many do you actually intend to read? Uh-huh. Instead, try podcasts like this one on growing a service based business, or alternatively try audio books. You can listen to them in the car or while you work and are much easier to make time for.  

DON’T- Put the cart before the horse when it comes to marketing

Many new entrepreneurs are excited and enthusiastic when it comes to marketing their business. And it’s easy to see why. Marketing is sexy. It’s fun, it’s creative and for the social media generation it’s easy and intuitive. Nonetheless, put your marketing efforts ahead of quality control and meeting the standards you have established for yourself and you risk putting the cart before the horse. You may even benefit more from outsourcing your marketing.

DO- Value feedback, no matter who provides it

Finally, it’s essential to value feedback even if it comes in an unpalatable form like a customer complaint. Every piece of feedback you receive (even if it’s unpleasant to hear) is an opportunity to grow, improve and refine your business. It will help to shape your business into a vehicle which will propel you into future success.

Ignore it, however, and your business will inevitably suffer.

Do What All The Millennials Do: Make Your Business A Success

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It seems we can’t go anywhere these days without hearing about some form of success story when it comes to business. Millennials creating smartphone applications that take over the world, becoming digital pioneers in a fast-paced and ever changing business environment, ad literally thriving not just driving under the overwhelming pressure. It certainly seems to be the inspiration for many others to follow suit as more business are being started up each day and with the promise of the a new year in full flow, now is often one of the most popular times to do it. But how do you ensure that your idea becomes a success? I wanted to share with you some of the things to consider to ensure that your business gets off the ground.

Having the right support in place

One thing you have got to consider when going into business or starting up on your own is having the right level of support around you. You may be an expert in your field and industry, know the service you provide inside out or the product you have created like the back of your hand, but you can’t always be the expert in every aspect of running a business. A good entrepreneur knows when they need extra guidance or support. That might mean computer network support where you have a company take care of things like cloud storage or handle your systems if things don’t go to plan. It might mean outsourcing to a digital agency who can come up with striking social media strategies or help your website be seen amongst the sea of other competitors out there. Choosing your support network is vital, as there will be areas that you can control yourself.

Knowing exactly what you want to do and how you want to achieve it

It is also important for you to know exactly what you want to do with your business model and how you plan on achieving it. This is how you can then strategize your business moves to ensure that you get your business to where it needs to be. This is the time to work out a business plan, know exactly how you plan on financing each move and then being open to ideas and change because business can be a very fast-paced environment and it’s important to ensure that you can also be flexible.

Embracing digital services

It’s now more important than ever that any new business embraces the world of digital. More is heading online these days and with consumer behaviors changing, it’s important that a business honors that and makes changes or at least gives customers the option. A decent website, being present on social media and ensuring that you have a decent marketing campaign could be the key to success.

A lot has to do with work ethic and attitude

Finally, while a lot has to do with how you make your business work you can’t forget that the only way it is going to happen is through hard work and dedication. Your attitude to your business and to life itself needs to be proactive and positive. Hard work will get you places.

The Pie Strategy

When I look at a pie, I imagine cutting it into pieces and devouring it slice by slice…

A whole pie is actually a great illustration for looking at your business. Let me explain.

cherry pie, apple pie, dessert, pie ala mode, piece of the pie

Ever since I started my coaching business, I thought coaching was what I was offering. It was, and still is, but it’s just a piece of the pie – not the entire pie itself.

If I rely on coaching as my only source of income, I’m dead. Even the busiest coaches don’t dream of coaching people all day. They may make a lot of money, but it’s tiring and dependent on your time as the coach being involved.

The “pie strategy” has changed the way I think of my business

Instead of putting “all my eggs in one basket,” I’ve decided that coaching is one of many things I offer.

I also do training, recruiting, events and I’m working on online marketing and online courses.

By following different lifestyle entrepreneurs, the key insight that hit me was: time ≠ money.

That means you shouldn’t be dependent on making money solely when you’re involved with it.

I offer a service (coaching), but people don’t really want to work with me. What they really want is the knowledge I can impart so they can apply it to their own lives/business.

That being said, online courses make a lot of sense. People can purchase them when they want. It’s cheaper than coaching. I can create them on my own time and I don’t have to be a part of it once it’s live. An in-person event may be overall more engaging, but with the convenience of watching it in your own home, it’s a value that’s hard to beat.

So think about ways to “take yourself out of your business.” Almost like putting it on auto-pilot.

Each new stream of income is like another piece to the pie. Mmm…that tastes good.