I’ve been following the progress of one inspiring young entrepreneur in the states for a while now, Marc Guberti.
He’s written a couple of guest blogs for me in the past:
He is also a prolific writer of business eBooks:
What really impresses me about Marc, is his natural entrepreneurial ability – especially for someone so young. He started his business while at school, and is still not old enough to buy a beer in a bar in his home country (he’s only just old enough to in the UK).
I’m a keen follower of his business story, and looking forward to seeing future chapters.
A blog post he shared in his latest email newsletter caught my eye:
In the post he offers 7 insights from his experience in business:
- In it for the money
- Hate work
- To make quick cash
- Easy life
- Got and A in entrepreneurship at college
- To be in charge and have power
- Have a better schedule for yourself
He goes on to explain more about each of the 7 reasons in the post and it’s well worth a read.
I wanted to share it with you, as I couldn’t agree more with what Marc has listed.
It made me think about other reasons why people might choose the independent road.
Here’s 3 more, and how they too could prove to be the wrong reasons for starting a business:
1) Unable to find a suitable job, so created one instead
I’ve worked with start-ups and pre start businesses for many years now and this is a common reason.
This can be great reason to set up in business, but it can also be a bad one.
It’s one thing to have a skill, quite another to turn it into a business.
So many small businesses fail because the person at the heart of it has a skill but are in denial about their business ability. I see it time and again.
There’s a fine line between self-confidence and being too proud to ask for help, or too tight to pay for it!
If this is your main reason for going into business, first do some soul searching. Question why you’ve not been able to find a suitable job. Be honest with yourself. Are there skills you lack? Do you have the right attitude to be able to work for yourself? Do you have the drive and motivation? Are you willing to accept that you can’t do it all yourself?
2) Turning a hobby into a business
This is a compelling one, and one I have experience of from turning my love of writing into a career as an author.
In many ways this is the best of both worlds; if there’s something you love doing and you can earn money from it, this is the holy grail of business. Soon work no longer feels like work.
Many people I meet who’ve done this report their feelings of guilt that they just do what they love; my answer to this – don’t!
Work is not supposed to suck! Life is not supposed to suck! You win, stop beating yourself up about it!
However, much the same as creating your own job, just because you have a skill doesn’t mean you can run a business. There is one other major flaw in this approach to starting up: will it take the joy out of it for you? It may sound obscure, but the moment you have to rely on something for money that you’ve previously done for relaxation and entertainment, you can quickly resent it.
This is partly why I say: “I’m not a copy writer”
I like writing, but I want to spend my writing energy on writing what I want to write, and I want to put my name to it. I’ve done the occasional piece of paid writing for others, and once in a while it’s OK – if it’s a topic I’m interested in – but the moment I start relying on it for income the moment it will get in the way of writing content and fiction writing.
3) Instant gratification
Related to Marc’s mention of an ‘easy life’ or ‘quick cash’, this one can be a killer in businesses.
We live in a world fixated on instant gratification.
Social Media has overtaken porn as the most popular pastime online. We can enter a virtual community and be ‘liked’ and ‘followed’ and be bombarded with emoji’s telling us we’re loved or made someone laugh.
We can go into a shop and buy pre-prepared food – here’s some fine examples of the laziest food available:
- Canned custard
- Frozen jacket potatoes
- Precooked chicken
- Any and all ‘fast food’!
We hate waiting for things.
But in business, it takes time. Even a ‘quick win’ can take 6 months to develop and get to market.
Some of the profit projections I’ve seen people produce when I’ve looked at their business plans… I’ve struggled to keep a straight face. It’s amazing how many start-ups are so enthused by their idea they’re convinced everyone and their dog will buy this untested product and they’ll be millionaire’s by the end of the month.
Have a contingency.
Ask for help and be prepared to pay for it.
Relax and accept that it will take a lot longer than you thought, just keep going…
There are many reasons for choosing to start a business. Take a moment to consider why you started your business. Make sure you are doing it for the right ones.