Composites of Entrepreneurial Success and Failure


An entrepreneur has much to learn in order to be successful. Among the educational requirements are: The day-to-day complexities of running a business, creating and/or producing products, delivering services, making money and dealing with the public. The biggest challenge of all, however, is to develop an understanding of yourself.

Entrepreneurs must come to grips with what they want and what motivates them; this will support their willingness to face adversity – that is bound to arise – and come out as winners over the long term. Successful entrepreneurs will have learned to transform their thinking, allowing them to prevail where others fail along the way.

True entrepreneurs struggle with their business ventures just like anyone else and for a variety of reasons, among the most obvious of which are a lack of capital, lack of understanding about marketing, and personnel issues. However, from my own entrepreneurial experience (32 years in real estate and mortgage financing business), and what I know of others, there are three underlying causes of failure when individuals pursue entrepreneurial ventures.

  1. They tie the success of their business with their own self worth.
  2. They neglect to set realistic goals and plans for themselves and their business.
  3. They are not prepared to pay the price for success.

True entrepreneurs with the right mindset will prevail over a period of time because they will have learned to understand certain fundamental maxims of entrepreneurial success.

Playing the part

Successful entrepreneurs, in contrast to those who fail, have learned to separate their standings in life from their self worth or self-identity. They understand that positive performance or failure in their own venture is not a judgment of them as individuals. People who are inclined to measure their self-worth against their venture performance are inherently adverse to risk and seek to remain in a perceived comfort zone.

Being able to differentiate these two identities allows them to see risk differently, and manage it better, which in turn lays the groundwork for success as an entrepreneur. People who have risked failure, experienced it, and learned from it, have not only learned how to separate their business performance from their self-identity, they’ve also learned the lessons of risking and failing.

These risk takers have a clear understanding that early failure in ventures is a natural part of successful start-ups. They are able to embrace those experiences, learn from them early and move on. This is critical to success as an entrepreneur. They must be willing to face and deal with early failures in order to prevent ultimate failure.

Objectives

Even though much is said and written about goals and objectives being necessary for success as an entrepreneur, few people learn the mechanics of successful goal and objective setting and planning. It’s not the plan but the planning that is important, and the goal setting process allows them to develop the confidence to take risks and fail.

Successful entrepreneurs are not only goal driven and goal oriented; they have learned to put into place the steps required to plan strategically and put forth reachable goals and realistic objectives. Visualizing goals, writing them down and putting together a detailed plan for achievement provides the confidence and motivation to prevail.

More than just business or operational plans, they have goals and objectives for all the important roles in their life. They have learned early that if they aren’t working their own plan they are probably working on those set forth by someone else. They chart their own course, embrace risk-taking leadership positions, make adjustments as required and prevail over a predetermined period of time.

Paying the price

As with any other aspirant to accomplished fields of endeavor, an entrepreneur understands that in order to be successful s/he must be prepared to pay the price at one time or another. There are really no overnight entrepreneurial successes. In fact, it has been said that overnight success generally takes 15-20 years. One of the early prices that entrepreneurs are quite often forced to face is the “re-making” of themselves in a way that can propel them to grow beyond the comfort of their sphere of influence.

Since most people tend to stay within their own psychological comfort zone, they begin to lose the risk taker mentality. They are comfortable with the type of person who is more like them, while the successful entrepreneur moves on to a different circle of associates who understand the journey.

Breaking out, being your own person and venturing into the risk induced unknown is lonely but bold and forces the risk taker to face the new set of circumstances. Consequently, there can be a new-found stress in old relationships.

It’s been said before that pioneers get shot in the front and the back, and only through a process of separating the venture performance from self-worth, being open to risks, prevailing through adversity, sticking to set goals and objectives, and adjusting your plans will you be prepared to pay the ongoing price that must be paid if you are to be a successful entrepreneur.

Creative Ideas Are Central To Your Web Business


We all have, from time to time, a bunch of ideas running through our minds. Not all of which are creative however. But when you are able to extract the creative ideas, put them on paper and apply them to a Web business, you have more of a chance at success than NOT taking action.

According to the old adage, “having a great idea and not acting on it is essentially the same as NOT having the idea” in the first place; and allowing someone else to take action on YOUR idea is just as bad.

Have you ever been struck by the “Hey! I invented that!” conniption fit? You know the one I’m talking about. It happens when you’re aimlessly watching TV and a commercial pops up marketing THE item you always told your friends, family, and anyone who will listen, would be the next big idea and make you truck loads of money. Now it’s right there on TV staring you in the face and making boatloads of money for someone else.

Or maybe you’re the type that gets convulsive with the “Psssh! I could make that!” twitch. Well whether you have the “I thought of it first” knee-jerks or the “any five year old could do that” spasms, it all boils down to the same coulda-woulda-shoulda disease. The appalling disease of inaction and envy.

If you’re tired of hearing success stories of Joe Blow selling everything from safety pins to speed boats on eBay (“I could do that!”) or a neighbor making big bucks with his online business from an idea you casually chatted about (“Didn’t I tell you what a great money-making idea that is?”), you can take matters into your own hands and plunge into the world of Web marketing with your own online business.

Now, just so you understand, let me say this up front: There are going to be a few bumps in the road and you may dvelop some misconceptions that you definitely have to deal with…But understanding what you will need to get started as a Web entrepreneur will go a long way in smoothing out the rough spots for you. So here are two of the major things (tools?) you’re going to need:

1) A Website: Making One is Not That Easy.

First and foremost don’t lie to yourself and don’t let anybody else sell you a “bag of goods” and lead you to believe that it’s peaches and cream, either. Do your own preliminary work by learning as much as you can about website creation. You don’t need to learn any fancy new programs from the ground up.

If you’re a real beginner, there are free html editors that you can download from the web; and if you’ve ever typed a document/essay/paper/letter in your life, you basically understand a textual layout and the things you can do to/with it. Your first website is not going to be very… attractive. It may be a very rough prototype. BUT, you’ll have at your disposal, some excellent tools available to you free of charge. Ever heard of Google? Sure you have!

The thing about the Web is people like to talk, and they like to give out information for FREE. So you can take a step-by-step approach to learning just enough html to understand the underlying site structure, and when you have the chance use that helpful little trick of “View>Page Source” (on simple pages, of course… simple but probably better looking than yours as it exists). You can google any html code abbreviations you don’t understand. And before you know it, your self-made website will be up. Like I said, it won’t look pretty, but it’ll be all yours.

Long story short, you’ll learn the fine art of balancing a little too much with just enough. (Helpful hint: just because you now know how to highlight every other word, doesn’t mean you should.) And while you’re patting yourself on the back over a job well done (at least until you can make enough money to hire pros to make your site professionally wonderful), you’re liable to run into misconception number two.

2) If You Build it, They Will Come.

Don’t be shocked if the only people who know of your existence in the early going are family, who you brag to, and your Web hosting company, who you can be sure will always remember you on “invoice day.” You can see where I’m going with this next, right? Ok, I’m not going to re-hash everything you already know about bringing people to your site, nor am I going to preach to you about “conversion rates.”

Let’s just say the bottom line for actually getting your website viewed, is to be creative. There have been hundreds (and will probably be millions) of e-books, eguides and reports which show you the sexiest ways to get traffic to your site, down to the simplest method like…get this…writing an article. THERE IS lot of good information out there; and again, it’s free.

Ultimately marketers want to sell you something, but you would be surprised at the amount of free information on the Web that is actually worth something and is more than a baited hook. Poke around, do some research, check out a few forums, download a few e-books (free or paid), and above all get creative!

Ultimately, it will be your creative edge, or your USP (Unique Sales Proposition) that will make the difference between the success or failure of your Web business (entrepreneurship), but you definitely need a website (blog-site) AND Web hosting.