There’s something about entrepreneurship that’s both alluring and terrifying. It can be seductive to think of yourself as your own boss, making your own rules and setting your own income. But it can also be a tad scary to think of all the risks involved in starting a business.
I am going to share my 5 things I wish I knew before kickstarting my entrepreneurial journey.
Whether you’re just starting out or you’ve been an entrepreneur for a while, it never hurts to reflect on the realities of owning your own business. Let’s be real, being a business owner is fantastic with a lot of struggles, challenges, wtf moments, and just down right exhaustion. I wouldn’t change taking the leap from corporate America to running my own business however, I don’t think there is enough real, raw, and honest truth about the opportunities that comes along with it.
Here are five things they don’t tell you when you become an entrepreneur.
1. Understand the basics of accounting and general bookkeeping.
Debit what comes in and credit what goes out. If you don’t understand what this means or how to balance your accounts, I strongly suggest you pause and start YouTube university before taking another step to start your own business.
(By YouTube University, I mean watching any free videos that will help you learn how to do or what to do next in your own entrepreneur journey. Learn from other biz owners who’s been there, done that.)
I thought I had a general understanding of accounting but I had no idea how much dedication, structure, deliberate action it would take on my end to maintain healthy and balanced numbers for my business.
Generally, accounting is concerned with the big picture, while bookkeeping is more focused on the details. However, both are essential for running a successful business. If you don’t have the time or resources to handle your business’s accounting and bookkeeping needs, you can outsource these tasks to a professional. However, it’s still important to have a basic understanding of these concepts so that you can interpret your financial statements and make informed decisions about your business.
2. Ignore all the new and shiny objects floating around out there.
Seriously, stick to the plan you have in place without layering in too many ideas right away.
A business plan is like the foundation of a house. You want to make sure it’s solid and well-thought-out before you start putting up walls and adding all the finishing touches. The same is true for building a successful business.
There are always going to be big, fun, influential ideas happening every single day and if you allow yourself to pay too much attention to them you may find yourself completely buried and overwhelmed with ideas you are trying to layer in.
Do yourself a favor and stay on track with your business plan and overall goals for the first year or so of business to give yourself time to see what works and doesn’t work when you go all in on a dedicated goal.
3. Say it loud and say it proud.
Be ready to tell anyone and everyone what your new venture is and who you are helping.
Word-of-mouth is essential for driving sales and building brand awareness. When you tell your friends and family about your business, you’re not just increasing the chances that they’ll make a purchase—you’re also helping to build buzz around your company. And as more and more people become aware of your business, the likelihood of achieving long-term success increases.
Of course, it’s not enough to simply tell people about your business—you also need to make sure that you’re providing them with a compelling reason to buy from you. Fortunately, there are a few simple ways to do this.
- First, make sure that you’re offering products or services that are truly unique.
- Second, focus on providing an outstanding customer experience.
- And finally, stay true to your brand promise by delivering on your promises and living up to your customers’ expectations.
By following these simple tips, you’ll be well on your way to building a successful business—one that your friends and family will be proud to support.
4. Not all clients & money are the RIGHT clients & money.
Time is our most precious asset in general and especially in business because every minute of every day counts when you are first starting out on your journey.
Some clients can be more trouble than they’re worth. (yeah, I said it.) The same is true of money. Just because a client is willing to pay top dollar doesn’t mean that they’re the right fit for your business. Similarly, a client who is reluctant to pay may actually be a better long-term investment. The key is to know what you’re looking for and to be aware of the warning signs.
A good client is honest, communicative, and respectful of your time and expertise. They’re also reliable and prompt with payments.
On the other hand, a bad client may try to nickel-and-dime you, or they may constantly change their mind about what they want. They may also be disrespectful or dismissive of your input. If you find yourself in a situation with a bad client, it’s important to know when to cut your losses.
After all, no amount of money is worth sacrificing your sanity.
5. Take Action. Take Action. Take Action.
This is a big hot topic in my books. There are so many courses, so many classes, free, paid, in person, online, and that’s fantastic. But what can happen is you get tied up in the learn, learn, learn phase of starting your business that you forget to TAKE ACTION!
Learning about starting a business is a great way to start, but if you never take the leap then you’ll never actually have a business. The best way to learn is by doing.
So, once you’ve learned the basics, it’s time to take action and start putting your plan into motion. You can’t start a business without taking some risks. But don’t worry, calculated risks are what make starting a business so exciting.
So, get out there and take action! Your future self will thank you.
I wish I was more educated on these 5 topics before I became an entrepreneur and I hope you found these to be helpful! Stay connected with us on your entrepreneurial journey!
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