ENTREPRENEURSHIP / BRANDING
I made the decision to become an entrepreneur when I was 19. Not for a little while, not for the next few years, but for life.
I think to myself “a desk job is cool, but I want to be my own boss.”
I don’t see myself working for someone for the rest of my career life.
I choose to become an entrepreneur because;
1. I need to.
2. My country needs it.
I come from the poorest country in the world where the unemployment rates are way too high.
I aspire to be more than an employee. I hope to become an employer and embark on more than a few successful businesses.
Does it mean I will never be someone’s employee? Highly unlikely. My field is in women’s empowerment and until my foundation is completely set up, I will have to work with the system to achieve my goals.
However, every goal must have a deadline. Every individual must have a set up date when they say “I want to have achieved this much by this date”.
If you are curious of mine, my blueprints are very well laid out; but simply, follow my journey.
I may promise a career in women’s empowerment, and then more. I hope it will be worth a watch.
In my one year of entrepreneurship experience I have learnt a few things I hope will be helpful to any young entrepreneurs starting out or simply considering chasing after that one dream.
I will only share 9 of them which I have found to be the most fundamental to me.
1. Find your purpose.
It is more than finding a business that is profitable. Entrepreneurship is at the core of it – problem solving.
You have to find something which helps people, and perhaps find methods that will lead you to achieve that goal.
You may even end up setting up businesses that will lead you towards that target.
2. Pick your ideas of successful businesses.
Sometimes, your dream business may be well out of your reach. If you have faith in yourself and your business idea but you are lacking capital, you have two options;
i.present your idea to potential investors
ii.Start small and grow big.
There are some businesses you may never have dreamt of ever being in but prove to be highly productive and efficient. If you are looking to save money for your dream business, invest in small businesses and grow big.
3. Decide on whether you want the type of partnership you want.
This seems easy in the beginning; 2 or a few people with similar interest and you automatically think you can run a successful business together. Or you and your friends want to pool funds and invest in something profitable.
Partnerships are a bit more complicated along the line and you must decide whether you are better off being a sole proprietor, in a partnership or incorporating depending on the type of business and ownership you want.
I cannot stress this enough. By deciding to become an entrepreneur, you have made yourself a brand.
Whether this is your business or your name itself; it must be branded. It must be clear to everyone what you or your business stands for.
One should be able to describe your product as soon as they have heard the name, simply because they have heard of it.
This may take a few years, a lot of effort and a lot of finances but it is well worth it in the long-run. As I read somewhere “Work until you no longer have to introduce yourself”.
5. Invest and make sacrifices.
As any worthwhile business, there will be a requirement to invest – be it finances and time itself. Make strategic choices and plans that will lead you towards your goals.
Secondly, cut off things that may hold you back from achieving this goal. This may be the trickiest thing to do, but if you really believe in your goal and purpose, it is well worth the sacrifice.
6. Never compromise quality.
For any product to sell, be it you as an individual or a product you are investing in, you must deliver the highest quality always.
This looks good to potential customers, potential partners and potential investors. All these are important for your business to grow. Quality always!
7. Make good connections.
Not every connection that comes your way is a good one. You have to be careful in choosing what you want to make and keep.
Having achieved steps 1 – 6, potential partners and investors may come your way.
Decide the great ones you wish to keep and hold on to those that will help you in the long-run.
8. Support your friends’ businesses!
Support your friends. As much as you want your friends to support you when you are start in out; so do they!
If you support each other and buy from each other; indirectly you pool funds from the outside world and bring it into your circle of friends.
You make and keep the money within the circle and grow together! Because you know when you support them, they will support you too.
9. Treat people well.
As I heard from a speech my mother said a few years back, “Treat people well on your way up. They will hold you down when you tumble down”.
I have worked with some people I wish never to associate with ever again.
Then, I have worked with people I simply dream of being around – even if I am not being paid.
The way you associate with people will affirm your foundation, and as they say, all strong buildings are built on solid foundations.
I wish you luck your entrepreneurship journey xx.