How to be a Successful Entrepreneur
For an entrepreneur, every turn of the calendar year brings a lot of promises and a feeling of promise. We most people we promise to lose weight or concentrate on love. We consider a change in lifestyle or a change in work environment. We set goals for ourselves and strive to achieve those goals. A big goal for an entrepreneur is financial independence, the ability to rely on yourself for your money and not some boss that you may or may not like.
But that leap can be scary and sometimes it’s easier to dip a toe into the pool before you make the jump. You don’t have to quit your job to start out on your dream, just ask Intentionally Inspirational founder Jason Wright, who built his business slowly until it became something he and his family could rely on as a source of income.
So what can you do to take that first step? Here are some tips.
Remember, Your Day Job Comes First
My kid loves superheroes. He’s a DC fan and big on the DC Universe. One Halloween he dressed up as Superman, which meant I had to learn everything I could about Superman. Superman, or at least his alter ego Clark Kent, has a day job as a reporter for the Daily Planet. He’s an ace reporter. And even though Superman’s passion and the reason for living are saving the world, he never fails to make a deadline and get a story in on time. Superman/Clark Kent is always aware of his day job.
Even though your side business is your passion, you can’t allow yourself to forget your day job. You have to remember to make that deadline.
We live in a pretty cool time. There are apps and computer programs out there to help us juggle all kinds of things. Some help us pay bills while standing in line at the grocery store. Others help us make inventory purchases while pumping gas. Take advantage of technology to make running your business easier. I used the notepad on my phone to write most of this article while I sat in the cell phone lot at the airport waiting for my husband’s flight to arrive.
Technology can be a great help to an aspiring entrepreneur.
Make Use of Freelancers
For an entrepreneur, if there’s stuff you can delegate, do it. I blog for a lot of people, that’s my business, and one of the blogs I occasionally write for is a woman who has a day job, but runs a blog on the side. She uses it to build sales on sites like Amazon and Etsy. She saves time by hiring someone else to blog and she still makes good money. If you can outsource at an affordable price and still make a profit, do it!
Do the Bare Minimum
It’s tempting to try and do it all from the beginning but trying to do a 40–60 hour a week job while still holding down your regular 40 hours a week job is completely unrealistic. Start small and grow from there. If you’re building an app, then build the app before you start thinking about sponsorships and advertising. If you’re launching a marketing business, take on a few clients at first and then grow from there.
Doing the bare minimum doesn’t mean you’re doing it halfway, it just means you’re being realistic about growing your company. It is important to be realistic as an entrepreneur.
Set Aside Business Time
If you know you have to work your regular Monday through Friday job from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day, then set aside time outside of that to work on your side business. You know your schedule and you know what fits into it. Make sure you block off time in your schedule. Make that time a weekly or daily appointment. If you want to grow your business, you need to treat it just like you would your day job. Show up on time and stay until quitting time. Dedicate yourself to your work during that time and don’t allow yourself to get distracted.
Don’t Forget to Sleep
As I think you have seen being an entrepreneur is stressful. It’s going to be tempting to work long hours to get your business going. Don’t. It’s only going to make your work worse and it’s going to make you too tired to do your regular job. In other words, no one is going to be happy! Remember to make sleep a priority too.
Entrepreneurship is not an easy road to walk. It takes dedication and discipline and it’s not for everyone, but with the right planning and the right mindset, it can be done.
I have faith that you can get it done!
Written by Erika Towne