So the entrepreneurial bug has bit you and now you’ve got an idea for a business. Fantastic! This is an exciting time in any business – the beginning. It’s all in front of you, and there’s lots to look forward to.
And you should be excited – this is definitely the time when excitement is often at its peak. And like any new venture or enterprise be it a business or a relationship, it’s a dynamic living thing. It’s not static- it doesn’t stay the same.
Which means that this raw excitement will wear off, and be replaced by other emotions and thoughts.
This is the natural progression of a business and its to be expected, and even welcomed.
But like romantic relationships, people are often surprised and caught off guard when their “honeymoon phase” ends, and they enter into the next stage of the business’s development.
At times you will be madly in love with your business. At other times, you’ll wonder why you ever even started it (hopefully these will be few and far between, but they are highly likely to happen at least a few times). And in the middle of those two extremes, you’ll experience many different thoughts and emotions when it comes to your business.
This is important because you need to be prepared. This initial exciting honeymoon period will be wonderful and you should enjoy every second of it. And know that when it passes, you’ll need a range of skills if your business is to have any chance of surviving.
Here are 5 things you’ll need to get your business up and running, and keep it going even after the initial gloss has worn off:
This is possibly the most overlooked quality required of any entrepreneur. You are starting a “long game” – this isn’t a short-term venture, but one that will be years in the making. You need a lot of sticking power!
Time and money
When you are getting your business off the ground and establishing it, you need time and money. If you have less money, then you’ll need to invest more time. And the same is true in reverse – if you have more money then you can afford to pay others to do things that will take them off your To Do list, meaning you’ll have more time for other things. But you need one or the other in large supply, and ideally both.
You need skills to get a business going. There is a popular notion, especially among women’s business networks, that encourage women with great passion to start a business. And whilst enthusiasm for your business is important (see next point), it will never substitute for skills. You need to have, or develop, a range of business skills to get your business up and running, and keep it going.
I don’t believe that mad crazy passion is required to start a business, and keep it going successfully (you can read more about the importance of passion in starting your business here). Not everybody feels this way, and an entire sub-industry of “passion” people have popped up, telling you how to find and work your passion. That said, I do believe that sustainable enthusiasm is required for you to get your business up and running, and keep it going.
Most start-up businesses need help in the form of ideas, support, guidance, and development of one or more areas of their businesses. This help usually comes in the form of paid professionals who are experienced and skilled in doing particular things. These skills may include website design and development, copywriting, product development, strategizing and planning, promoting and marketing, business/graphic design, social media, and general and start-up business coaching.
There is great false economy in trying to do everything yourself. Even if you are on a shoestring, invest in quality help in those areas where you are least confident and skilled – it will pay off ten times over.
Congratulations for having an idea for your business. May it bring you everything you wanted and more. I urge you to set yourself up to succeed by having open eyes, an open heart and an open mind to what is ahead of you. You’ll have the best chance of loving your business every single day if you do.