To all aspiring entrepreneurs and bosses-in-the-making: there is no business fairy who will magically bestow success upon you. You’ve got to work that grind, day in and day out. The road to success is sure to come with some bumps, detours, wrong turns and crater-sized potholes but you can get there. These 5 tips to becoming a successful entrepreneur are the essential ingredients to my secret sauce.
1. Ditch the ‘get rich quick’ mentality
One of my biggest pet peeves is when people come to me with their next big idea thinking they can avoid all the heavy lifting. There’s no easy way up, there are no shortcuts and financial success can’t be your only goal. Clients can smell greed from a mile away and don’t take kindly to being taken advantage of. Successful entrepreneurs are in it for the long haul and repeatedly deliver results to their clients. When you want what’s best for them and provide consistent value, financial success will inevitably follow.
2. Choose a career you’re passionate about
I don’t totally buy into the motto; choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life. By definition, a relationship is: the way in which two or more concepts or people are connected, or the state of being connected. Judging by the amount of time we spend with clients, partners and prospects, as well as the time we are plugged into our emails, I think it’s safe to say we’re connected and therefor in committed relationships with our careers. And like any relationship, a healthy career has good days and bad days and requires constant effort to stay alive. Some days you’ll get to sleep in and have an overpriced latte from the café down the street before your first meeting. Other days you’ll leave the house in yesterday’s mascara and reindeer socks mid-July because of a client emergency (true story). You have to work for your dreams and a half-hearted mentality will chip away at your drive to succeed. Your success depends on an irrevocable commitment to your vision so it helps to love what you do.
3. Take risks
There are too many variables in the real world that you simply can’t put into a spreadsheet. Yes, you want to plan and strategize but there’s a fine line between being prepared being a chronic over thinker, so blinded by fear that you miss incredible opportunities. Assessing a situation and acting quickly is a vital balance for any entrepreneur. I know it’s scary and you stand to lose time, money and your reputation – but those are the very things you also stand to gain. We, as individuals and as business owners, will not grow if we do not change and we will not change if we do not disrupt the status quo every once in a while. It is important to do your due diligence and calculate the risk but ultimately trust your gut instinct and bet on you, the odds are better than you think.
4. Build a reputation
Branding matters, both for your company and yourself alike. Thanks to the Internet, you have infinite ways to bolster your brand – or ruin it. Use the channels that are available to you to connect with people and create lasting relationships. The relationships you build within your network and with your customers are imperative to your ability to scale because people do business with companies they know, like and trust. In order to gain their loyalty, you should always keep your word, be responsive, offer value (I’m repeating this one because it’s important), take ownership of your shortcomings and resolve errors to the best of your ability.
5. Work harder than everyone else
There is always going to be someone out there waiting for you to fail, it’s the nature of the game. Don’t let them win. Know what your customers want and give it to them. Hustle; stay up-to-date and make it your daily mission to remain relevant. Remember, success does not sleep (even though you will have to at some point).
These tips have served me well but I’d love to hear what has worked/is working for you. Let's connect!