As a new year approaches, we often hear the phrase “New year, new me”. We know it’s a new year but is it really a new you? How many years have you been saying this? How many resolutions have you kept? Can you honestly say you’ve really grown within the last 3 years? These questions are not an attack on you dear reader – they are meant to be a reality check. It’s much easier not to ask yourself these questions – and indeed a lot of persons don’t – but it’s the requirement if you aspire to achieve more.
Starting your own business may seem like a daunting task but it’s more important than ever these days to have at least a backup plan in case things do not work out with your job. Also, as the government here in Barbados is investing more into entrepreneurship programs, this is an indication of changing times. Here are the key points of this article:
• Jobs are not as secure anymore.
• Many businesses are scaling down which means reduced chance of climbing the corporate ladder.
• Your “dream” job may not be fulfilling to you later on in life.
• Cultivate the mindset of learning from failure.
Many businesses are scaling down which means reduced chance of climbing the corporate ladder.
Climbing the corporate ladder is increasingly difficult here locally as more and more businesses are scaling down. With the continuous rise in the cost of goods, the only way for some persons to get by may be to get a second job – but we all know how tough the job market is. Wouldn’t it be better if you did something on the side that can gradually grow enough to support you and your family?
What you start doesn’t have to be big or complicated. If you enjoy cooking your own food for instance and you notice a lot of your co-workers buy lunch, why not endeavor to take orders from some of your lunch buying counterparts and earn a little extra from doing that? You start with 1 customer, then 1 customer becomes 2 then 3 and so on. Eventually you might be able to setup your own canteen because you are making so much money! It’s possible – but only if you start.
Your “dream” job may not be fulfilling to you later on in life.
As you age and mature as a person, your needs, wants and desires tend to change. It’s one of the reasons why lots of friendships from school age fizzles away. It’s life. Ten years ago, the job you would’ve landed might’ve been your dream job but now, it’s no longer fulfilling you. You wake up, go to your job and do just enough to keep you from getting fired. Sure the salary might be great but deep inside you are craving for something new. If you end up in a situation like this – are you equipped to move on from your job? Cultivating entrepreneurship skills will help you to navigate this period as you will at least have an option to do what you really love.
Cultivate the mindset of learning from failure.
In all honesty you will more than likely experience rejection and failure as you pursue your entrepreneurship goals. But as the saying goes – no pain, no gain. Remember that you are walking a path that will test you to the very core and expose who you really are. It’s not supposed to be easy! But don’t let this discourage you. The best way to overcome this initial fear is to break down the steps that you need to start and maintain your business into small chunks. Set yourself some micro goals and deadlines to reach them. For example, if you are a new event planner, you can set a goal to get at least 1 event in the first 90 days of your business. Smaller goals might be to reach out to 30 potential clients in a month. A micro goal might be to get the contact information of the point person of one of your potential clients and follow up if they rejected you the first time.
There are many steps involved with running your business. Some will be pleasant; others may be difficult. But they are all steps in the right direction. When you are starting out it’s a great idea to have at least one knowledgeable person that you can talk to as this will make your journey much easier. If this is not possible currently, seek out motivational speakers online because you will be tested and you will need the support.
Know the difference between who you are and who you wish you were.
Finally, be brutally honest with yourself. Know the difference between who you are and who you wish you were. Don’t do something because it sounds fancy. Do it because you are passionate about it and also make sure it can fit into your current life. For example; it’ll be difficult to run a full time hair salon as a single mother with a full time job. A better approach if you are now starting out, would be to take appointments and schedule them on your off days and build your clientele enough that you can do it full time. The key is to gradually transition yourself into who you are meant to become.