Setting yourself up for entrepreneurial success isn’t the easiest feat in the world. There’s a lot that goes into running your own business and a lot of different issues that can raise their ugly heads and cause you trouble.
All the same, there’s little in life as fulfilling as running your own business and making a success of it, and the effort required to do so is more than worthwhile.
Here’s a look at a few things you should do to set yourself up for entrepreneurial success.
Have a clear vision of where you want to be
The first step, bar none, to set yourself up for success in your business venture, is to have a clear vision of where you want to be.
Having a clear idea of your dream scenario for the endeavor not only helps to keep you inspired to push forward, but it helps you to keep your eye on the prize and avoid being sidetracked by distractions, or thrown off course altogether by unforeseen events.
This “business vision” even allows for more effective use of SEO techniques, as you can immediately specify long-term keywords you’d like to optimize for, such as “Medical Malpractice Lawyers” or “Account Management Firm in London.”
The way to establish this vision is to imagine what an ideal day would look like, doing the job of your dreams. Don’t be too hung up on constructing a “realistic” target, here, or slapping a due date on it.
The point of this exercise is to focus your drive, not to chase a 1-year goal with key performance indicators (KPIs).
Favor systems over goals
Goals are deadline-driven and generally focus on very specific and measurable criteria.
While you will need to act in a goal-oriented way in some areas of your entrepreneurial venture, there’s a good argument to be made that goals are not the ideal means of ensuring progress.
Goals are subject to the whims of circumstance and assumption. We predict how long we think a task should take us to achieve, assume the resources we’ll have available for it, and then try writing it down as a goal.
The problem is that circumstances change, projects sometimes take longer than anticipated, and resources — or even targets — change. The end result is often us missing our goals and feeling constantly frustrated.
Systems, on the other hand, are habit-based. They are the daily practices we employ that lead to success over the long term. A goal might be “I will lose 10 lbs by July 1.” A system might be “I will track my calories every day and avoid sugar.”
Systems are almost always more resilient than goals. Apply them wherever possible.
Careful thinking and planning are vital to any successful business, but being proactive is arguably the most important.
Oftentimes in the business world, opportunities come and go rapidly, and the market favors the bold rather than the cautious.
An analogy could be that instead of clearly identifying a target, aiming, and firing, you should see the general shape of a target, fire, aim to re-calibrate, then fire again.
Action is instructive as we learn both from our failures and our successes — each giving us data we can use for making better decisions next time.
So while this isn’t universally the case for everything we’ll do in business, it does often pay to be action-oriented.
Top photo: Pixabay photo (CC0 Creative Commons).