Throughout the course of history, the entrepreneur has stood apart from more mainstream companies. Research has shown that the companies which have grown the fastest and are some of the world’s largest were started during the toughest of financial and economic times.
Entrepreneurs are always looking for the secret to success, which will help them win in the down economy. Peter Shea, CEO of Entrepreneur Media Inc. summarizes winning in a down economy in one word: preparation. In of his bestselling book, Start Your Own Business, Shea explains that the true entrepreneur will look at the down economy as a mountain of opportunity. The challenges faced are easily navigated and success waits on the other side.
Shea suggests that a true entrepreneur create a checklist prior to beginning their journey into the small business world.
#1: Review Personal Finances
Change is not something easily managed within the constraints of life. If you have a family, are they prepared to have limited income as a business is started? Overall, are your personal finances aligned to need the initial cost?
Ensure the risk of your business does not outweigh the reward. Starting a small business takes time and you may not see a return on the initial investment for many years. You need characteristics like persistence, patience, humility, and sacrifice in order to thrive as an entrepreneur.
#2: Strength and Weakness Analysis
Successful business leaders need to understanding strong points and leveraging the weak points. Although having all of the qualities to ensure success would be ideal, only a select few possess these qualities. The best leaders have the ability to enhance their strengths by leveraging their weaknesses.
Look at the events which have transpired in your personal and professional life. Do the knowledge, skills, and abilities match the qualities needed to be a successful entrepreneur? A tip would be to recreate a faux resume listing all of the accomplishments and the expertise as it relates to the business model. Based upon the resume, you will have a better understanding of your personal alignment with the business model.
Review personal strengths and weaknesses. Disseminating personal qualities will allow you to choose the correct business in accordance to the finding. A customer based business is not the right choice if there is a customer relation is not strength.
Rate your level of competency as relates to the business. Capitalizing on the strengths is a requirement; pay more attention to the weaknesses. There will be no room for error as an entrepreneur. Increase your skill set until both strengths and weaknesses are balanced. For a better visibility of each quality, rate each quality on a scale of 1-5 with 5 being the best.
Step #3: Clearly Define Goals in Business
Choosing the right business as an up and coming entrepreneur means defining what the business is going to represent to you and the audience in which you serve. Financial freedom and complete autonomy are a few goals, but should not encompass the entire business model. The goals with the business should be aligned with the personal goals. If the goals are not aligned, the business is destined to failure; for nothing more than pure apathy. You will no longer be willing to invest the time to develop your brand.
Entrepreneurs survive down economies and come out on top by adhering to these three rules. Understand your financial viability, analyze your strengths and weaknesses, and define your business goals. Once all three steps are complete, you, as an entrepreneur, will have survived a down economy.