Need to Stop Doing As an Entrepreneur

Focusing on too many things

Entrepreneurs have the special powers of constantly attempting to be superheroes. They tend to think that they can offer their 2 cents of knowledge to every department working towards their dream. This leads into focusing on to too many things. This habit often results in them being unable to offer their 100% to almost any of the tasks they put their hands in. An entrepreneur must understand that they must focus on departments in which they specialize, for the rest they can simply recruit and oversee. Focusing on too many things can also lead to entrepreneurial depression.

Chasing money and random opportunities

At times, entrepreneurs start pursuing money and in the process forget the purpose of creating their startup. There is no quicker way to drown your enterprise than start chasing too many things. Entrepreneurs have a habit of being on the lookout to make money and also seek random opportunities but in the process they tend to forget about the task at hand. The sign of a good entrepreneur is their habit of being unshakable and focused.

Taking your competition for granted

Consider this as a cardinal sin. Many entrepreneurs once they taste success tend to develop a habit of taking their competition for granted. We have witnessed far too many organizations collapse because they allowed their competitors to sneak in from the backdoor and take their position. This habit gets developed slowly but is surely disastrous. Even if you are the only one in your product category, never take your competition for granted.

Building Brand for Entrepreneurs

The entrepreneur is intimately tied to the business in almost every aspect and most importantly, by reputation. This reputation conveys qualities to potential customers, partners, investors and employees that influence their desire to engage with the business. Before committing large sums of scarce cash to creative agencies, take a few simple steps to establish the foundation for your brand. Later, when you can afford to engage them, you will give them a solid base to work from and increase the value of their work.

First, clarify who you are by developing your brand personality. This begins with your own unique personality. There is some aspect of your personality that attracts people to you. If you’re not sure, ask your friends and family. Even if the trait seems a little quirky and not corporate-like, emphasize it because it is already working for you. Along with your personality is a unique benefit that other people say they get from you. Perhaps you are a great problem-solver, a good listener, or an outstanding dealmaker. Make sure that this personality trait and unique value are evident in everything you do.

Second, clarify your purpose and direction by developing a set of guiding principles and goals. Guiding principles are the core set of value statements that guide your behavior in decision-making and in working with others. They also help others to understand how they can expect to experience working with you and your business. Clear, measurable goals help to keep you on track and they let other people in on where you are going. Together, the goals set the compass point and the principles or values help to guide your decisions and actions.

Third, communicate your intentions by sharing your knowledge and expertise. Helping others to solve problems or advance their own initiatives is a powerful way to build your reputation and your brand. Take advantage of all of the electronic tools available including blog articles, videos, social media feeds, eBooks, and seminars and even printed books. Don’t give up after just a few weeks because you didn’t see your business growth explode magically. Building a brand can take a long time. A reputation for delivering highly valued products and services comes after many people have experienced them and then told others the good news.

Over Confidence and Entrepreneurs

The capacity of our mind is bounded. We tend to focus on very narrow slices of information and ignore massive amounts. We imagine that reality is simple, that we can reasonably forecast the future, and we become overconfident as result. In short, we fail to appreciate how much we do not know — how much uncertainty we should have. Further, we tend look for evidence supporting what we already believe; consequently, we become more overconfident. We fail to appreciate that our beliefs just might be false, that we are fallible.

Unfortunately, we don’t seem to learn very well from experience. We regularly need to remind entrepreneurs not to ignore the role of chance and randomness in events. Our mind is constantly trying to make sense of things – and it has a great liability to do so, even when there is nothing to be made sense of (except randomness). And, as you read these words, their truth will seem obvious – because you cannot imagine fully not knowing what you know now. In hindsight, everything is obvious, including this point. Since everything becomes clear to us and we forget what we did not know, the cycle feeds itself and we become even more overconfident.

However, if we can recognize that we are surrounded in time by massive uncertainties, then we are least on the right path. Acknowledging that we are fallible and tend become overconfident is itself incompatible with overconfidence. We should keep in mind that we are not as clever as we had imagined we were back when we were less clever. We should use the tools that we have at our disposal (e. g. statistics, experimentation, our capacity to reason in a rigorous way), and avoid making decisions based on un-grounded intuition and overconfident beliefs.

Being an Entrepreneur

To begin with you should write down your concept as to what you economically want to do as precisely as you can in only one paragraph. But in doing this you have to watch out for the various traps that exist in developing a concept. They are; 1) it won’t work, 2) you can’t make any money on it, 3) there is no market for it, and 4) there can be unpredictable customer behaviour. But also remember this; that the customer has to pay at least 5 times the direct cost of a product.

Now there are three types of Business entries that you should consider. They are; 1) starting from scratch whereby you should be prepared to take 5 to 8 years to start a business, 2) buying an existing business whereby the risks are less by saving time (1 year) for the business to be operational, buying cheaper assets, and by assuming cheaper financing, and/or 3) in buying a franchise whereby the risk would only be about 30%. Also you could be an Entrepreneur within a company as well.

The ideal business actually should have; 1) no investment, 2) an identifiable market, 3) a low cost supply, 4) minimum government regulations, 5) good price-cost ratio, 6) frequent buyers, 7) favourable tax treatment, 8) a good distributing system, 9) news value, 10) technical fashion obsolescence, 11) perishability and, 12) weather proofness

Three types of business plans should be written once your concept of a business starts to materialize. They are; 1) The Feasibility Plan, 2) The Operational Plan and, 3) The Financial Plan. Financing for the business could be accomplished by; 1) cash from customers, 2) sub-contracting, 3) your own money, 4) borrowing (from as few as possible) or 5) by leasing.

The Management team, if you decide to assemble one, should include; 1) the creator, 2) the driving force, 3) the marketer (the marketing strategy should be to find the competitive edge either in quality, price, or service) and, 4) a financial expert. Then you should give each of them part of the rock and teach them to listen to others.

Be More Productive Each Day As An Entrepreneur

  • Affirm yourself for the things you did

This is very important. Most entrepreneurs talk themselves down. You are driven to make things happen and if you do not feel you are pushing yourself to the limit then you feel that you are not good enough. The problem with this approach is that it does not work. It makes you feel even worse and so you get even less done.

Instead, affirm what you have done. Acknowledge all the things you get up to each day and be pleased with yourself for what you made happen. It may seem unimportant and yet, it does matter. So if you are serious about increasing your productivity, choose to look yourself in the mirror at the end of each day and affirm just how much you did do that day.

And for bonus points, look yourself in the mirror each morning and tell yourself how great you are for starting another day as a super entrepreneur.

  • Don’t fill out your to do list with things that you never complete

Your ‘To Do’ list needs to be full of things that you are most likely to complete each day. Do not just put everything including the non-priorities on your list because you want to tick it off. Yes, there is a sense of completion when you tick things off however, you may subconsciously end up doing the less important but easy things on your list rather than doing the highest priority items. So be wary of having those long 100 plus item ‘To-Do’ lists what make you seem busy but end up reducing your productivity each day.

  • Fit things in that you want instead of focusing on the things you don’t

Instead of trying to get through everything in your day, and finding that you end up managing what you no longer want in your life, choose to do the important things that you want to be doing each day. Do those first and then see what time is left and do anything else in that time.

If you get deliberate about this. You will find that more of your day is spent on things you want in your life and automatically, the not-so-great stuff starts to fall away because you no longer have time for it.

Make Great Decisions As an Entrepreneur

Use the Experience of Others for a Jump Start

It’s often valuable to study not just your own past success, but the successes of other people. This is something successful people do. They don’t just study one person’s experience and say, “Well, whatever mistakes they made, I won’t make, whatever things they did right, I’ll do.” Instead, they study perhaps 50 histories of successful people. They look at all of the mistakes that those successful people made and then they come up with a pattern. They use this pattern when they are getting ready to make a decision. Now you can think, “OK, I’ve read that so-and-so did that in 1973 that didn’t work, and someone else did it in 1979 and it did work, so what was the difference?” “If I do this in my own business, what are the odds that it will work, what are the odds that it might not work?” That’s when you look at the experiences of other people…

… when your own experience bucket is light, you can fill your experience bucket with other people’s experiences.

Feeling Confident with Your Own Decisions

I remember when Peyton Manning had just come to the Denver Broncos and they played something like 3 or 4 games. Somebody asked him a question about a particular game and his response is something that made an impact on me and I continue to think about his response from time to time, especially when I’m in difficult situations. He made a comment something like this, “Well, as we make mistakes together as a team, and as we perform different plays in different difficult situations, we have those experiences in our memory. In the future, when we encounter a new situation and we don’t know what to do, as a team, we can rely back on our successes and failures in similar situations. As a team, we’ll be able to do better going forward.” He was much more succinct than that, but that’s the concept. I use that when I’m considering risk taking and doing decision making – I’m able to look back on my successes and failures and I’m also able to look at other peoples successes and failures.

Okay, back to you: there are two key factors here: one is experience and the other is failure. As you get more experience and as you have more failures, you’re able to evaluate the next step with more precision. Again, you may be thinking, “I have no experience, and I’ve never failed, so what can I do?”

You have a blank slate, so that means that whatever you do next might fail or succeed but you have absolutely no idea what the odds are. Some people might freeze and do nothing because of that. The problem is, if you have no experience and you freeze and do nothing, you will always have no experience!

What if you look at it differently and say: “Being able to make good decisions in the future is impacted by the amount of experience that I have, and the more failures that I have. So therefore, in order to rely on my own experience bucket, I need a few experiences, and I need a few failures.”

And, if that’s the case, the question might be asked, “Does it matter if you fail?” “Does it matter if you try something for one month, or one day, and it fails?” “Does it even matter if it succeeds?” My opinion is that the only way in which it matters is that it adds to your experience bucket.

That means that if you make a decision today, and you’ve never made a decision before, it doesn’t make any difference whether you’re right or wrong. You’re just adding to your experience bucket. Tomorrow you make another decision – and again it doesn’t matter if you’re right or wrong, you add to your experience bucket.

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Becoming An Online Entrepreneur

Have Clear Goals For Your Business

When you start a business online, you need to have clear, specific goals. Being clear on what it is you want to accomplish is an important first step.It’s more than just coming up with an idea. You have to write down your objectives and know how you will achieve them.

Produce A Plan

Once you have set your goals, you have to develop a plan for success. To do this you need a product or service that people will buy from you. You have to know what you are going to sell, who you are going to sell it to, how you are going to sell it to them and how much you are going to sell it for.

Take Action

Next, it’s time to take action Action steps require more than just thinking about them. Announce to everyone you can what your action steps are and that will make you answerable to your word.

Use Outsourcing And Automation

Every successful online entrepreneur does not do everything themselves. You will need to outsource certain tasks and use software that can automate operations for you. Outsourcing helps you to avoid tasks that drain time from your day. Top freelancers with a variety of skills can be found on websites like Fiverr, Elance and UpWork.

Manage Your Time Carefully

Sometimes, to develop something new, we need to let go of something old. A lot of people like the idea of being an online entrepreneur but they don’t think they have the time. The answer isn’t about finding more time, it’s managing the time available and making it work more efficiently. As you build your business, you may have to watch a less Television, work at weekends or do less of your favorite sport or pastime for a while.

About Entrepreneurship Stress

I’m going through the baby bumps of starting my own business. Yet, I know that what I’m doing is the right thing in the long run… because living off a government job is not the way I’m going to achieve success and happiness in this life. We’ve all been programmed that good benefits and pension are the way towards freedom but at the same time, in my experience I’ve never felt more insecure than working a union dayjob. Everyone’s always fearing layoffs and by nature a large organization is full of politics.

I don’t need that kind of insignificant stress and negativity. Life’s too short.

Cut out everything that isn’t serving you in your life.

But anyways now that I’ve been working on my online business and website- trying to grow an email list and audience, learn about marketing, learn about the technical aspects of web-development and still maintain some semblance of a content creation schedule, it can be overwhelming to say the least.

Another mental ordeal I struggle with is that, I’ve gone back into old habits of doubt, fear and worry about finances. In my first month of launching a new website there were inherently a lot of expected and unexpected administrative costs with getting the hosting and registration of the websites setup, as well as business and legal costs to set the company properly setup with the city. And of course I learned a lot in putting a lot up in the front end towards marketing to begin growing an email list.

Again, the costs and process is overwhelming, but in hindsight I guess the beginning stage is the hardest.

The marketing itself was a huge lesson because I think I overspent on buying clicks for my email list. Lesson learned and now I think I’ll turn towards Facebook Ads which could be potentially more lucrative and efficient monetarily as it’s much more targeted.

Last year I joined an online marketing course and I feel it’s time to dive back into the material because there is a lot of good info on paid online advertising, and I definitely need up my skill in that area if I’m to grow my business.

These next couple months are make or break for me because I really am determined to never return to a day job… but the fears and doubts of running a business and providing a better life for my family and whether I am capable have been weighing me down.

But I know I am capable of being a great writer and content producer and also I know that I am able to solve problems that I’ve encountered in my life.

So rather than wasting my time on dwelling on all the issues that are just inherent in starting a business it’s time to roll up my sleeves and start taking action again.

From Entrepreneur to Infopreneur

Any entrepreneur can become an infopreneur as it depends on one’s skills. Many infopreneurs make use of their skills while outsourcing those tasks he is not good at.

There are certain differences between entrepreneurs and infopreneurs when it comes to running the business. The opportunities online obviously differs from entrepreneurs who takes risk of ownership of the business through management proficiency. Infopreneurs take maximum advantage of market practices and are considered to be accommodating massive number of customers compared to entrepreneurs. The reason lies in having access to numerous platforms online where infopreneurs meet more customers than in case of brick and mortar businesses run by entrepreneurs.

However, both entrepreneurs and infopreneurs require similar fundamental qualities of risk taking, determination and confidence. Even the goals are similar as that of any other business, which is, generating higher revenues and continuously incorporate novel ideas.

There is a gradual move seen from entrepreneurship to infopreneurship because of less capital required in this domain. Intellectual capital is considered necessary for innovation and creativity to make full use of technological advancements. Time and energy is not wasted to hire employees unless the work is outsourced and one does not have any established contacts. The risk is slightly higher for an infopreneur as it is difficult to grab ideas and make it a successful business initially. Considering other risks such as financial, legal and social risks are least for an infopreneur. Furthermore, infopreneurs have more time liberation and flexibility as compared to entrepreneurs.

An infopreneur usually does the entire work himself starting off with publishing information in to an electronic format. With the help of a service provider who copies information at minimum cost so that the infopreneur can sell the final product to its clients. Infopreneurs are generally good with online marketing and that is the basic reason for their success. They know the fundamentals to generate traffic that would increase their online sales. They are also exceptional copywriters and this is the key skill they use to boost their profits.

Promising Entrepreneurs

  • The Founder’s Dilemmas: Anticipating & avoiding the pitfalls that can sink a Startup by Noam Wasserman

Noam Wasserman teaches a class called ‘Founder’s Dilemmas’ at Harvard Business School. This book is the culmination of Noam’s actual research and that class. He mainly focuses on the key dilemmas that a startup founder will face when starting a company. All the information related to founder dynamics, solo founders, optimal number of founders and their roles and relationships, equity allocations between founders is covered in the book.

  • The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Business by Eric Reis

Eric Reis talks about the lean startup approach that is being adopted across the globe, changing the way companies are built and new products are launched. It fosters companies that are not only capital efficient but also focus human creativity more effectively. The book also highlights the current trend toward quick, low-cost startups that prefer action over research. The impressive insights that Reis provides can be applied to any startup, making this book a must read for all promising entrepreneurs.

  • Peter Principle: Why Things Always Go Wrong by Laurence J. Peter and Raymond Hull

This book contains made-up stories about administrative and business hierarchies. The idea of the Peter Principle has been explained very lucidly. “In a hierarchy every employee tends to rise to his/her level of incompetence.” When people perform well at their job, they are eligible for promotion. This cycle continues until they are promoted to a role for which they are incompetent to perform the duties. At that point they have reached their ‘final placement’. They are no longer eligible for further promotions because they have reached their level of incompetence. The authors have tried to address the question of incompetence in the work force today. Entrepreneurs may get to understand staffing issues from a whole new perspective.