The 10 Success Secrets Of Ordinary Entrepreneurs
We often read about the incredible exploits of highly talented entrepreneurs. We marvel at their achievements, and when one of them is invited to explain the secrets of their success, we hang on to their every word.
I often wonder, however, how relevant their advice is for the average person. Indeed, a lot of what is said is applicable even to the ordinary businessman. Still, there are a few aspects that I believe do not fit the less gifted, which comprise the vast majority of entrepreneurs.
Running a business is not rocket science. Look around, you will confirm the fact that most successful businessmen, while generally intelligent, need not be geniuses. They just happen to have a suitable mindset for entrepreneurship.
If you go head to head with a superior force, you will be crushed. The same is true of an entrepreneur with normal talents going against a brilliant competitor under circumstances where brilliance gives a strong advantage. Wise strategic thinking tells us that it would be best if you only fight where there is a good chance of winning. Study the ideas below to see how many of them managed this:
Pick a business you can easily understand and compete in. It may be the in thing to go for an Internet business, but if you feel you cannot quickly absorb the techniques of this hi-tech field, then find a venture that is less demanding in this aspect. Unless there is a partner or trustworthy employee who understands the complexity, it would be unwise to go into something that you are not skilled at.
Go for team effort. Very often, we hear of legendary entrepreneurs who are able to singlehandedly build empires. Very few are that capable. Most of the time, success is due to team effort. In the Philippines, most are through the combined efforts of a husband and wife team.
Be humble. This is evident in two things: First, do not find it below your stature to do menial tasks if needed. Second, be willing to listen to employee suggestions and admit mistakes if this will help the business.
Select a venture whose main technology is already mature. While there is virtually no business that is not affected by technological changes, some are more affected than others. There are many dangers when the main technology is not yet established. A different technology may dominate and render the one you are using obsolete. This may necessitate a lot of expense to reequip, or this may make your business model unprofitable. Besides this, rapid technological change may not be your cup of tea since you may find it difficult to learn new things quickly.
Specialize on one or only a few functions. Most entrepreneurs do not cover a lot of major processes when they are just starting. This may be due to a lack of capital, but even if they have the cash, they are more likely to be focused.
Choose low profile ventures. High profile businesses tend to attract too much competition. With more competitors, profitability is often compromised.
Be frugal. This advice is cliché but worth repeating because so many forget this basic principle. The only possible exceptions are industries where projecting a wealthy image is necessary.
Be very cautious when expanding. Looking a t the extremely rapid growth of top businesses, it would seem that this is the right thing to do. However, while we see companies that have successfully expanded, there are also far more businesses that grew too fast and became bankrupt. Until there are sufficient control measures and cash reserves, it is extremely dangerous to branch out.
Have wise mentors. The business environment now is so complex that it is impossible to deal with everything by yourself. Look for trustworthy advisers or consultants that you can refer to when there is a question outside of your knowledge. If you have great mentors, you can do things that are beyond your skills.
Be realistic. It is essential for self-motivation to strive for something you desire to get or achieve. An achievable target is a better motivator, for you will exert more effort if you think it can be done. There are some business icons who believe in setting fantastic goals, but I do not think it is applicable for most businesses.
*Originally published by the Manila Bulletin. D-4, Sunday, June 23, 2013. Written by Ruben Anlacan, Jr. (President, BusinessCoach, Inc.) All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or copied without express written permission of the copyright holders.