They say that the New Year is the best time to start something new because psychologically, we’re programmed to think that way (think New Year’s resolutions). That’s why so many people will launch into a new hobby this month, a new job or even a new business venture.
Here’s 3 tips to consider if the latter is what you’re planning to do.
1. Make sure you’ve considered ALL the risks.
Sure starting a business sounds like fun, but the reason people throw those scary statistics around about 1 in a gazillion businesses still being around after 1 year isn’t because a bunch of folks started bad businesses, it’s because a bunch of folks had no business launching a business in the first place. If you haven’t sat down and done some real calculations into the risks involved in the business you’re considering, do that NOW before it’s too late.
If you want to work 9 – 5, launching your own business isn’t going to get you there in year 1. It probably won’t get you there EVER. So if that’s your goal, think different, and not in the Steve Jobs way.
2. Make sure you’ve got support.
Everyone gets excited about being a ‘Trep’ (that’s the street name for Entrepreneur!). It’s cool, it’s edgy, it’s fashionable and it’s celebrated. However, ask any ‘trep’ out there if they did it on their own (even the ones that look like they did) and I guarantee they’ll all answer the same, they didn’t.
You’re going to need encouragement, and bags of it. You’re going to need belief, not just self-belief but the belief of close friends, loved ones and people who know you the most.
You’re going to need to be challenged, and only people close to you have earned the right to do that, so if you’re starting out without some good counsel on the outside, the probability of failure just increased exponentially.
3. Make sure it’s a good business.
Ok, I know this sounds a little obvious, but is it really worth the effort and risk for the rewards?
It took General Motors 53 years, thousands of employees, $billions in capital investment and thousands of partners to realize a market cap of $7b. It took Instagram a couple years and 12 people, with practically zero $$$ in capital (comparatively) to hit $1b. One of those was a much easier road to travel than the other!
Your business idea might be incredible, but is there something else you could do to realize greater returns for lower risk? If there is, that’s probably what you should be doing.
We work hard to support and enable startups at The Work Lodge which is why we have our informal Mentoring program, and are about to launch our incubation services in Q1 of 2016, but we’re smart enough to know that they’re only a supplement to everything else you need.