Inspired by a quote I was asked to write for a Magazine, I decided to elaborate more on a topic that is so important for an entrepreneur and no matter how much you know, you could always do with more – Things you wish you knew before you founded your startup. The points that I have covered here are primarily my first hand experiences and I would love to hear your experiences as well 🙂
- Never be afraid to make mistakes or try something new – What gives me the thrill of a start-up is the infinite possibilities of trying something new. The sense of achievement when we finally succeed gives the courage to push us to our limits. In the process it is inevitable that you will make mistakes. Never be afraid, in fact be proud of learning from them. A mistake made now is a mistake saved from being made when it might be too late. In my opinion, mistakes are the stepping-stones to success.
- A Business Idea evolves constantly: Don’t be too fixated on the business idea that you had when you started. Let the customers lead you along the way. Have an open mind to evolve and adapt to the changes around you. What you did 2 years ago may not be relevant today. The world is changing fast. Grow with it, change with it. But never compromise your values. Values are timeless.
- Hard work always pays: Hard work endows you now and forever. The endowment comes in various forms – connections, collaborations, ideas, revenue, funding, mergers, ideas, inspiration and courage that will last you a lifetime.
- Do not try to do it all by yourself: Hiring talent / free-lance talent is a key investment for you and your company for 3 reasons:
It gives new perspectives
Out-sourcing tasks that aren’t your core competency will only get the job done better and faster
Most importantly it frees up your precious time to focus and plan on other core tasks.
- Keep a journal for your everyday tasks: Maintaining it everyday helps you collect your thoughts and organize your ideas. It is, after-all, humanly impossible to remember all the great ideas, to-dos, reminders and tips that you note for yourself. Going back and reading the journal every weekend will help you tremendously to focus and plan the week ahead.
- Plan every week ….way ahead: Planning and keeping a journal may seem like overlapping ideas, but to me are completely different. Keeping a journal is to collect your thoughts and remind you of things you cannot remember in detail. Planning is strategic. Planning is acting with a goal. Make a half yearly plan; break it down into quarterly, monthly and weekly basis. Don’t shy away from making changes and edits to it as your ideas evolve. This will help your ideas like a blinder helps a horse – inseparable to achieve effective productivity.
- Network for the joy of networking and not with an agenda in mind. Great and lasting connections are not made in transactional meetings.
- Managing Stress: Starting a new business is a very stressful endeavour. No matter how small your start or how big you think. Be prepared for it. There will be lots of dirty jobs, admin jobs, co-ordinations, marketing duties, time consuming clerical jobs, field jobs, sales jobs etc. all of which you, you and only you will have to do. The beautiful strategic decisions and recognition comes to those who are willing to wait. Try to take on only those things that you can commit to. Do not bite more than you can chew is a saying that has stood the test of time for a reason.
- Work-Life Balance: In the end it all boils down to striking a good home and work life balance to keep your sanity in check. Remember, in the end everything will pass and life will be good. The precious time you spend away from your family, the bad moods you bring home, and the late nights are only the foundation for your future regrets. There will always be more work, but the today that you lost with your loved ones will never come back. Plan well and set aside a strict rule to spend time everyday for things outside of your work – with family, pursue a hobby, exercise, reading a book or whatever it is that helps you relax.
- Invest your time with like-minded people: Sometimes, it is possible to lose track of your vision and the zealous motivation that you once had. The very best way to keep your motivation at its peak is to surround yourself with people who are full of it. The spirit is contagious and a wonderful cycle will be formed in no time that will never let the fire die within you and within the people you surround yourself with. After all, birds of the same feather will flock together.
Here, I said it. Now don’t tell me I wish you had told me so :- )
About The Author: Sai Sudha is the Co-Founder of Hidden Truffles. To know more please visit : www.hiddentruffles.com/about-
Jumpstart Magazine where excerpts of our Co- founder’s quotes were published.