The modern society won’t be what it is today without entrepreneurs and their enterprise. And we all know that. But most entrepreneurs will also tell you that, their journey wasn’t pleasant at all. And it was quite hard.
So the question I do ask is, do we know what it takes to be an entrepreneur, and what is being an entrepreneur anyways ? Also is there a perfect process to help people navigate their way to an entrepreneurial success? And most importantly why is all this relevant at all ? After all, everyone is different, and what works for me, may or may not work for others. Having said that, we all learn from experience, and sharing our experience is one of way sharing knowledge also. That’s how the human society has evolved over time.
We all celebrate successful entrepreneurs, and probably rightly so, but the road on which an entrepreneur has to travel is quite topsy-turvy. And not all make it. A big part of being an entrepreneur is about constant learning, and developing skills, most important of all, the ability to make right decisions and finding ways to be more productive, or else you may struggle to pay for your living.
If you are learning to hustle then, it’s worth working knowing that, the idea of chasing deals, or doing a set amount of meetings or networking every day or each month isn’t an automatic ladder to success. In fact, in most cases it doesn’t work. Also you can’t read your way to success. It is about learning from trial & error. So one has to learn to make better and right decisions on what is worth spending your time and resources over, and what isn’t. Also doing constant networking doesn’t really help, instead one should focus on developing existing relationships, and creating new opportunities through the tested network, to avoid time wastage. It is important to develop a network that is on the same page and wavelength with you.
People working for institutions are salaried employees, and they do get paid to do a lot of meetings, it’s part of the job. And while they maybe stretched, their overall productivity or output from these meetings remains quite low. A very sizeable numbers of the meetings can be done through or over phone calls or e-mails. And it is important for entrepreneur, especially those starting out, to be mindful of being efficient, as they don’t have the luxury or comfort of collecting a pay cheque come what may.
And therefore, it is not about the amount of meetings, but about the quality of meetings and networking. Also one should focus on a common destination, in other words, develop the ability to create a shared and common goal, whereby people can buy into and also share your overall vision. It is never about my way or no other way. You can’t make it without others, being a self- made requires others to build you. And getting people to trust you takes time, but not all will. That’s how it is.
Building a business relationship is like any other human relationship. It takes time and requires commitment. And not all relationships will succeed. Yes! a business school can teach you a process, but in the end, a large part of how you build your business is dependent on your own ability to understand human beings, and also being able to navigate your way through. And then learning, how to get people on board especially those who can help you with building a momentum around whatever it is that you are trying to achieve as an entrepreneur.
Also if you are an entrepreneur with an amazing idea, you do need to realise that, not all brilliant ideas get funded. Most of the time, people won’t see , what may you be looking at, in terms of potential. People commit capital based on their expectations and overall perception. Therefore not all prospects you date will end up in a lasting marriage. And most importantly, not all capital is the right capital. Also, it isn’t easy to know who may be wasting your time, and who isn’t. So you will need to learn to see through the conversations and discussion, and then make your own conclusions. One size fits all isn’t a strategy, at best it’s a lazy approach.
Don’t forget, you are dealing with humans, and human factors will influence your end result. You may do ten meetings a day, and not have anything worth showing. So your productivity will remain volatile, in terms of your ability to get desired results from a potential meeting, especially if you are linking your effort to a positive outcome.
In the end, being an entrepreneur is quite lonely, so it is about you, and sometimes nothing you will try, will work, and you will have to try again without any guarantees. Not all succeed. But the process does help you learn, and that type of learning can’t be taught in a business school. It’s not all glory and sunshine, there are many dark allays through which you will have to go through, and you will have to learn to be your best hope.
Nobody can teach you how to succeed, sometimes those trying teach you how to succeed are the ones struggling. And knowing that you can’t possibly know everything is the best advice you can give yourself. It is a long journey, so those who do try to sprint their way to success, do end up running out of steam. Also, it is not just about succeeding, but being able to sustain that success, by learning to continuously evolve and staying ahead. Or you may lose what you had, and it won’t be easy to come back. It is not for everyone especially those used to stability and certainty, or those looking for work-life balance, but then no job comes with a permanent guarantee either.
And remember, People will only celebrate your failures, if they are convinced that you did succeed in the end