Entrepreneurship is an exciting adventure but it is not for the faint of heart. Starting your own business is a potentially rewarding experience, but it is also a brave move. The risk of failure is real, with only 18% of first-time business owners succeeding. If you want to be one of them, you’ll heed these four pieces of advice.

Care About the Work

If you’re going to go out on your own, you need to love what you do. Wanting to make money for yourself rather than someone else is a great reason to work for yourself, but it can’t be the only one. Successful business owners love their service or product enough to fight for it. They fend off naysayers, arduously pursue financing, sacrifice sleep and completely give themselves over to their young endeavor. They love their business enough to bleed for it, even when others fail to see their vision. Success is a journey. There will be failures, mistakes and obstacles along the way. You won’t make it through the fight if your heart isn’t in it.

Continue Your Education

Naturally, most entrepreneurs start a business that coincides with their knowledge, skills and experience. Your expertise matters, but don’t let your confidence become cockiness. Laws, technology and industry standards change all the time. If you don’t keep up with them, your new business may become irrelevant before it has a chance to be successful. Remember, too, that you need a broad knowledge base to run a business. Small business owners need to understand business licensing standards, human resource laws, data security and many other areas of business that were likely handled by other departments at their former job. Seminars, like Success Path Education that is discussed on abc15.com, are available on many helpful topics and will help you learn what you need to know, both before and after your business opens.

Take Action

The road to squirrel heaven is paved with creatures who were unable to make a decision, instead running frantically back and forth across the road, unsure of what to do. If you want to be a successful entrepreneur, you can’t be a squirrel. Clearly, you don’t want to take foolish risks. You do, however, need to take smart risks. When considering a new product or other change, take the time to think it through. Learn all that you can, analyze the data carefully and then make your move. If the project looks like a bad idea, scrap it. If the idea looks fertile, jump on it. You’ll never fly if you don’t jump. Lots of people dream of and talk about starting their own business one day, but the dream will never be reality if talk is all you do.

Find the Right People

Who you surround yourself with matters. Get involved with local business organizations and use them to meet and network with successful entrepreneurs. Those who have started and maintained their own businesses are excellent mentors who have done what you wish to. You won’t find a better source of support or good advice. Choose carefully when hiring employees, as well. Select those who share your morals and values, but who bring different skills to the table. Even before you open your new business, find the people who say yes. Some will think your desire to leave a steady paycheck and strike out on your own proves your insanity. Others will be excited for you. Spend more time with those who encourage you than those who don’t.

Entrepreneurship is possible and attainable. To succeed, remember that failure is not fatal nor mistakes deadly. Trust yourself and your vision, making course corrections as necessary along the way. Unending passion and a willingness to take smart risks are the basis from which you can make your entrepreneurial dreams a reality.


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