So you’re entering the world of entrepreneurship, eh?
You must be filled with lots of questions like: “Who’s my audience? How will I market to them? What’s the best pricing strategy? What will it take to make it big? All of these will be answered in time and with confidence – if you answer this first, crucial question right:
“Are you willing to be bad at something long enough to get good at it?”
Entrepreneurship is not an easy road to travel. Exciting; yes! Easy? No. There will be daily challenges with new concepts to learn, new logistics to satisfy, and plenty of potential for failures; both big and small. Entrepreneurship is not for the faint at heart. Nor is it for the perfectionist.
Anything worth doing is worth doing poorly.
No, that’s not a typo – it’s a legitimate philosophy. If you believe that what you’re attempting to do is worthwhile, then take the risk to do it; don’t wait for everything to be perfect. It never will be.
In an article titled, The Best Time to Begin was Yesterday, Now What? , (http://chrisrisse.com/2013/11/the-best-time-to-begin-was-yesterday-now-what/), author Chris Risse elaborates on the concept of starting where you are and working up from there. The article emphasizes the importance of being patient with yourself. Look for victory instead of perfection. Even small victories – including learning from your mistakes – count.
Failure is not an option… it’s a prerequisite!
If you’ve read any biographies of business masters at all, you’ve certainly seen the pattern: Attempt; failure, attempt; bigger failure, attempt; success, attempt; set back, etc. The beauty of the biography is that the reader can see the end result after multiple attempts, failures, setbacks and eventually, the success for which the writer is now known. If you read enough biographies, you might fall under the impression that failure was a mandatory requirement in the formula for success. You might also be right.
Psychological Band-aids ®
No matter how much – or how little – prior knowledge you come in with, entrepreneurship is going to provide enough skinned knees for multiple boxes of Band-aids ®. If you’re not in a position to handle that, whether financially, emotionally, physically, or psychologically, you’re probably better off finding an established business that could utilize your talents. Even at that, if you’re willing, you could try your hand at something small and part-time to start out.
The rewards of answering “Yes” to that first, crucial question are tremendous! The growth you experience is unsurpassed and the confidence that comes with it is delightful.
Remember this, even though you have to pay your own dues, you can usually find people to help defray the cost, so to speak. Don’t be afraid to ask questions of anyone and everyone. Most fellow entrepreneurs have been in your shoes and are happy to share their experience. It’s part of their continued growth process, too. You’ll have to discern what advice works best for your style, product, and business model, and with that discernment will come some of those skinned knees. But that’s okay, because you’ve made a decision – a commitment to yourself. You’re willing to put up with those bumps and bruises because you know that they’ll make you stronger in the end; strong enough to succeed. You’ve made up your mind that you’re willing to be bad at something long enough that you will get good at it!
So what are your stories and insights?