Updated: Mar 11, 2021
Entrepreneurship is regarded as a career path that requires courage, hard work, consistency and passion, but it is a lot more than just that. It is not your 9-5 job and seldom requires more than 12 hours of work daily. Entrepreneurs are not only needed to work on their presence on social media but even handle customer queries. It requires you to be practically always present on social media to communicate with potential customers, increase your visibility, and educate your audience on your work, goods, and services. Bref, it is non-stop work until you can finally hire some folks to handle parts of your business. During the struggle (which usually lasts for long), life will be essentially all about acquiring a solid client base, creating and saving.
1. It’s always a risk and requires you to have a backup plan just in case…. Well you know!
Let’s not pretend to be the next Bill Gates. Most of us are unlikely to succeed as college dropouts; while I don’t individually think that higher education could get you very far, we do have to recognize that it can always get you a job in case things don’t go well or still have to handle that 9 to 5 while starting. Who knows? Maybe further education can enable you to have a better insight into business and finances. Studying Management, Marketing, Finance, or Accounting could be relevant to anyone embarking on an entrepreneurial journey. Or you could stick to something pertinent to your business venture. Plan and start saving up before quitting your job. The same goes for those who wish to drop out. Make sure to have a very detailed plan and a backup plan before making your final decision.
2.More than a 9 to 5 job
Your success will depend on your effort and determination only. On some days, you will have to sacrifice nights outs and dates to focus on your work, which is completely normal. However, do not compromise your mental health for the sake of success. A break is always needed for you to refuel and function even better than before. As Larry Kin (Medium.com) puts it: “You will need to be the kind of person who does their taxes in January and flosses twice a day.” In other words, you will have to be super determined and motivated to succeed. You will be much on your own when you first start up, and you will be required to undertake various tasks to minimize costs, such as marketing, packaging, taking the inventory, delivery and much more. You will have to be prepared to deal with stressful situations. The best way to handle this is to organize your workload and make sure that nothing is forgotten. Expect the unexpected. Your daily workload might always be disturbed by something new or unforeseen circumstances. Be prepared for things not to ever go as per your planning. Yet, sticking to your planning daily is one of the best ways to ensure that everything is being handled and nothing is being disregarded. Take every new responsibility that you undertake as a means to learn something new and increase your knowledge. The knowledge and experience you acquire as an entrepreneur is like no other; make sure to savour every bit of it, the good and the bad and use your experiences as lessons to get better at what you are doing.
3.Your business revenue is not your money to spend.
Save every penny that you earn from your business. Business revenue should not be regarded as your bank account. Learn not to overspend even if you’re making an insane amount of money at the very beginning. You never know what could go possibly wrong in the future. Thanks to the pandemic for reminding us not to ever take anything for granted and to always be on our guards. Your hard work will eventually pay off, but this does not mean that you should be treating yourself to the latest iPhone to reward yourself. Hold that urge and do it when things are running smoothly, and your business is stable enough. Keep a separate bank account if possible for your business to not mix your budget with your business budget as these two are not to be entwined even if they both belong to you. Treat them as totally separate entities. Run your business and manage your expenses responsibly. You will have a lifetime to relish your success later on.
5.You will make mistakes.
As a newbie in the field, do not expect yourself to master all the required skills to run a business. It’s best to leave your ego at the door and be ready to learn from anyone who has more experience than you in the field. You can learn from their mistakes as well as your own. Be prepared to make mistakes at the beginning and remember each one of them. If possible, note them down so as not to ever repeat them. Whenever you find yourself in doubt, consider consulting others and asking for help from more experienced entrepreneurs. Mistakes are bound to happen during the first phases of your entrepreneurial journey, but that should not get you down. The key is to keep learning.
6. You will often feel lonely.
You will feel excluded a lot of times. Since a 9-5 job is usually the norm once you graduate, the chances are that the conversations will endlessly revolve around office life when you hang out with your friends. Most of your pals will be unable to comprehend how your work functions and might interpret your choice of becoming an entrepreneur as a lack of discipline or laziness. Luckily, these perceptions are slowly shifting. You probably invest a lot of time and energy in what you do, but your work most likely doesn’t require you to be stuck in a chair from 9 to 5, and therefore, many find it hard to relate to you. Some might avoid talking about it due to a lack of interest. Nevertheless, you can continuously expect support from your friends, whether they get it or not. Just don’t expect them to understand your sudden excitement when you get your first $10 worth product sold or your disappointment when an order is cancelled.
6.You might have to forsake your relationship.
While you might be one of the lucky few to have a supportive partner, chances are that most of you might find yourselves with a partner who is unable to understand your obsession with your business and not comprehend how much of your time and energy is required when starting off. Entrepreneurship also means that you will not have a stable income for a long time. Working full time on your business at the start might put your relationship at stake. For startups, remember that it is not the time to start a new relationship as you will have to invest time and energy in both your relationship and your new startup. Regrettably, not everyone is blessed to have a supportive partner. Some might perceive your passion and your business venture as a commitment that requires too much of your attention or time and might discourage you from going further. Sacrifices are needed for your business to succeed. The best way to not forsake any of the two is by striking the right balance between your work and relationship. E.g. You could manage your time efficiently to allow yourself to spend time with your partner or have a day off every week.
You will often feel lonely.