Being a successful entrepreneur requires immense amounts of motivation, inspiration and hard work. It can be incredibly rewarding or crushing depending on the levels of success. In many ways, it is a bit like playing a game of whack-a-mole. There are numerous moving parts which can seem like they require continuous attention. As soon as one problem has been solved, three more pop up in its place. From strategizing, product testing, finances, and much more, there are various items to keep in check in order to change a dream into a reality. Scott Belskey, the founder of Behance, Inc. summed up being an entrepreneur, “It’s not about ideas. It’s about making ideas happen.”
Seeing as the road to entrepreneurial success is a difficult though well traveled one, we spoke with ten different business experiments to uncover strategies to maximize your potential as an entrepreneur.
Stephen Skeel is the Co-Founder and Executive Producer of 7 Wonders Cinema, a brand offering full-service branded video strategy, production, and delivery. He believes that avoiding rushing through tasks or goals is a sure fire way to cover all bases effectively.
“So much of our world is built on instant gratification because of the technology we have. In some ways, we’ve come to expect a lot of things immediately. The age old phrase of ‘Success is not built overnight’ still rings true in business. It takes time for ideas to come to fruition no matter how well thought out they are. Waiting can be stressful which is never a great place to be in when you’re already under pressure to perform. But, try to be mindful about having the perspective of patience.”
Growth: How and why
Practice Health specializes in mental healthcare. Their CEO, Drake Ballew, suggests being knowledgeable about the reasons for performing certain actions or decisions in order to remain on course.
“If you do something without rhyme or reason, your journey as an entrepreneur can quickly become like wandering in the desert. Your decision making process should be informed by the data you have on your company. For example, if you’ve had success selling a product, you should attempt to discover why people like it and who those people are. This will allow you to gain the information that should let you repeat the success on the same or larger scale. There’s no sense in throwing things at the wall and hoping something sticks.”
As an entrepreneur, it can be easy to slip into the mindset of doing everything independently. Despite the reliance on self that being an entrepreneur demands, it is unwise to isolate. Greater Than is a business providing natural electrolyte drinks for nursing moms. Their CEO and Co-Founder, Mark Sider, considers integrating others a smart move.
“Mentors and other people with experience can be a fountain of wonderful advice if you choose to utilize it. So many other people have likely been in a position similar to yours regardless of where you’re at as an entrepreneur. Constructive conversation and even simple observation can do wonders for your mindset and decision making. Learn from those who have experience, there’s really no better source of information out there.”
Adam Bém is the Co-Founder and COO of Victoria VR, a brand offering groundbreaking VR metaverse. He advises taking the time to design a strategy for operation.
“By creating a concrete version of your business plan, it will alleviate stress and give yourself a heads up for what’s coming down the pipeline. It will also cause you to be more forward thinking than you’re used to. Think through all the important things that need to be accomplished in order to move the company forward. Thinking through questions such as ‘where will your business reside?’ and ‘what will your company prioritize?’ is a great way to get moving in the right direction. Having a plan in place will also come in handy when problems arise.”
Bar None Games specializes in organizing team-building activities. Their Co-Founder and COO, Lilian Chen, believes in giving special attention to the financial backing of a company because of the detail and intricacies involved.
“First off, unless you have a wealthy best friend, finding the people willing to fund your company will take longer than you likely anticipate. Make sure to give yourself ample time to identify and meet with as many possible legitimate investors as you can. More opportunities equals more options. It’s far better to have options for funding than to be empty handed entirely. Second, funding all of your company’s areas of need will probably take more money than you might expect. Be forward thinking in your funding plans. If your company grows, so will your expenses.”
Everything about venturing out as an entrepreneur can be overwhelming at one point or another. Being able to navigate these waters with self-control and will is a necessity. California Honey Vapes is a business providing vapes, apparel, accessories, and batteries. Their CEO, Chris Coote, suggests this approach.
“When the going gets tough, some people are quick to fall apart. This is where having self-discipline comes into play. Think of self-disciple as another term for inner strength. The more resilient you can be as a person, the easier decision making becomes. Being strong in this sense also lends itself to being more committed to a task and a more creative problem solver as determination usually finds a way. Self-discipline believes in themselves and any successful entrepreneur should be wired this way.”
Theresia Le Battistini is the CEO and Founder of Fashion League, a brand offering the first female-centered blockchain mobile game of its kind. She considers placing objectives to strive after to be a key part of being an outstanding entrepreneur.
“Without knowing where you want to go, it’s impossible to get there. As an entrepreneur, you have to set goals for yourself otherwise you’re just doggy paddling around the pool. You have to set goals for yourself so as to move in a specific direction. Achievable goals should inspire you and anyone you’re working with. Not only will you be furthering your ideas, hitting a goal provides everyone involved a sense of accomplishment and larger impact on the idea. There’s few better feelings than achieving what you set before yourself.”
The world will always be changing and entrepreneurs must change with it so they do not fall behind. However, a person must become aware of said change before they can act on it. This can be done through educating yourself. Sweetkick is a business providing clinically proven products using plant-based active ingredients. Their Founder and CEO, Sean Byrne, believes people should realize this.
“You will have a very difficult time creating a product or company that is profitable if you don’t understand the industry or it has passed you by. It takes some intentionality to sit down and learn but it will be well worth your time. If you have a deeper understanding of an industry or topic, your decision making will be more straightforward. That’s one of the bigger reasons for educating yourself.”
Build the right team
FAVES specializes in climate candy made of fruits and veggies. Their Co-Founder and CEO, Amy Keller, advises those in positions of leadership to vet any possible employees thoroughly to ensure that a high quality organization is the norm.
“Every successful team is made up of people who are skilled and reliable at what they do. Bringing in people who are difficult to work with or are not competent enough to contribute will only derail your dream. Ideally, you should look to add people to your team who are passionate about what you’re doing and can clearly demonstrate the additions they’ll bring to your staff. That being said, bringing in people isn’t the only thing when it comes to building a quality team. As a leader, it is your responsibility to instruct, guide, and nurture your employees toward success.”
Caleb Ulffers is the CEO of Haven Athletic, a brand offering organized gym bags. He believes that marketing a business is one of the more impactful elements out there.
“If people outside of your company are entirely unaware of what you’re doing, even the best product designs will fail. A lack of potential customer awareness is equivalent to having not produced a quality idea. If no one knows it exists, does it really exist? With so many unique avenues available to make others aware of your company, there’s no excuse not to try as many as possible. Your website should appear clean and be easy to navigate. Social media has done wonders for numerous companies. Also, SEO or content marketing is a wonderful inroad to discovering people who are already interested in a product or industry similar to yours. No matter what you’re doing, market yourself!”
Being a successful entrepreneur is challenging and can become burdensome if it is not approached in a wise manner. Tasks and ideas can get out of hand much quicker than expected and everything in one’s power should be done to avoid this. Hopefully, the advice of the experts will aid hopeful entrepreneurs in their endeavors. There’s inherent risk that comes with being an entrepreneur but that should not dissuade anyone. Debbi Fields, the founder of Mrs. Fields Cookies put it best, “The important thing is not being afraid to take a chance. Remember, the greatest failure is to not try. Once you find something you love to do, be the best at doing it.”
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