You often hear people say to never give up in the effort of pursuing your dreams. The challenge of growing a business is a heavy one, and it is easy to become discouraged. How do you strike the balance between persistence and being realistic. I have read somewhere that it takes a certain level of being irrational, or even craziness to pursue a business idea.
Rather than talk about the technicalities involved in the challenges of growing a business, such as keeping up with the personnel, financial and resource management or problem solving, I would like to focus on the personal challenges you might face on your entrepreneurial journey.
It is our personal outlook of how the business is doing, that makes us either soldier on, or throw in the towel. Before you decide to go for the latter option, it might be worthwhile to adjust your perspective, and re-evaluate what is really going on with your efforts to succeed and meet the challenge of growing a business.
It does not matter what business you go into, but when you first do, there is not a lot that you know about that particular business environment, and especially how you yourself, are going to fare in that business.
Instead of being paralysed by this lack of knowledge, the prudent thing to do, is to acknowledge the fear, but still press on.Because sooner or later, the fear will turn into exhilaration, as you gain momentum on your path to success.
In order to take the fear on, it is helpful to think of your advancement into the unknown, as a journey of discovery. When I first started out on my entrepreneurial journey, I knew nothing about the daily management and other tasks, I would have to be responsible for. But, I rose to the challenge when the time came. You will be pleasantly surprised what happens when you challenge yourself.
There will be numerous things you will not be able to do as you start your business, but the answer to this problem is simple. Learn, learn, learn! If you cannot do it yourself, or are overwhelmed, then hire someone to do it for you. Even when you do hire someone to do something for you, take the time to learn a little bit about it, to ensure that they are doing a good job.
Your entrepreneurial journey should be one of continuous learning and improvement. You should aim to become a better version of yourself, each and every day, by small and incremental improvements. The Japanese have a term for this kind of ideal. They call it Kaizen. It is the Japanese business philosophy of continuous improvement applied to working practices and personal efficiency.
Continuous learning and improvement, will see to it that your business grows as you grow. In my personal business experience, which started with selling computers, your business will rarely stay the same, if you strive to learn and improve. Now I do Web Design and Development, which is evolving into Internet Marketing, all because of my experiences in the previous areas, where I discovered that there is more I could do.
We are so conditioned into thinking that failure is a bad thing. This is far from the truth. In order to grow your business, you have to be able to embrace failure. Do not get me wrong, I am not trying to say you should seek out failure. I am saying you should use it as a stepping stone to your successes.
Failure now and then, is inevitable for anyone who goes out there in pursuit of a dream. What is tragic however, is to let that point of failure be your defining moment. Your failures are the experiences that teach you how not to go about doing something, and push you towards the right path. Like Thomas Edison said on the subject of failure, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”.
One of the advantages of practising Kaizen, is that the consistent self-improvement places you in a position, to be able to deal with change. Change is the only thing, along with death and taxes of-course, that is guaranteed. And if you are not prepared to effectively deal with change, it will be difficult to grow your business.
I am involved in a technology related business, and in such a business change is fast, to the extent that, unless you stay abreast of the changes in the industry, you get left behind. Whatever industry you are in however, most of the information you need to stay current, is readily and often freely available. All you have to do is put in the effort.
It is very easy to get discouraged in growing your business. Easy to think that your present situation is how things will always be. I battle with these doubts on a regular basis, and somehow find it deep within myself, to carry on, with the belief that sooner or later things are bound to get better.
On that note, let me leave you with the words of Les Brown, the motivational speaker, who said that, “there a winners, there are losers and there are people who have not discovered how to win”. I would like to believe that you are on your way to discovering success, if you haven’t found it already.
Are you starting your own business, struggling to grow one, or maybe have found incredible success? Let us know in the comments below.
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