The dream of business ownership is like an addiction running through the veigns of entrepreneurs. We crave the start-up and break out into cold sweats at the very thought of a new business opportunity. When done properly, a start-up is a wonderful thing, flourishing with profits and cash flow. When mangled and mismanaged, the beauty tarnishes and becomes a dirty needle driving us to a metaphorical over dose.
So what happens that causes us to lose our way and take what we thought was such a wonderful idea and turn in into such a mess? For many unenlightened entrepreneurs, they take their eye off the contest and start coveting the prize. Instead of focusing their serious intention on building an enterprise, they lose focus and just create a job.
For some, being self-employed is just fine. Just understand that being self-employed is not a business. Being self-employed is still trading hours for money. The dream of entrepreneurship for many is realizing fame, fortune, liesure, travel and a healthy cashe of possessions. That’s the prize for creating a well-run enterprise. Let me say up front that I too hope to realize those prizes. There’s nothing inherintly wrong with any of those things. But they only come at the end, after you’ve created the enterprise. The problem is, many hopeful entrepreneurs take their eye off the start-up and start focusing on the prize, before the enterprise is even established. For these people, the prize becomes a poison and bitter reality instead of the comfort.
For these lost entrepreneurial souls, fame turns out to be the dog remembering you, for your family has long forgotten your face since they never see you. Your fortune becomes a huge pay cut, the result of a poorly run business. Your liesure has been traded for living at your office. You trade your 40 hour per week corporate job for an 80+ hour per week self-employment nightmare. Your travel has become nothing more than a mind-numbing commute from your home to your office. Your possessions are not exotic cars and vacation homes, but accounts payable, credit lines and inventory.
How did you get yourself into this nightmare? For most, the answer is in conducting the proper research, developing a solid marketing plan and testing for viability. This simple process would have told many business owners that their business model was flawed and needed adjustment. Unfortunately, they never really did any business planning. By focusing on the prize and not the process, these starters never really got started…at least not properly. The process is not complicated, but you do need to follow it. If you don’t understand the process, get some coaching, find a mentor, or read a good book. That reminds me, entrepreneurs can buy my new book Business Start-up 101 by visiting www.BusinessStartup101.com or Amazon.com. If you want to chat, drop me a line.