One of the biggest mistakes I see entrepreneurs make during their startup…..
Not assessing the skills they need to run a business.
- Yes, you need to figure if you’ll incorporate or not.
- Your office location is sorta important.
- And you’ll definitely need startup funds. (But has anyone heard of bootstrapping til you make it?)
But the bigger question is how well will you be able to run your business?
If you want to start a bakery, you need to know how to bake well. But honestly you need to know how to get people to pick your bake shop and keep them coming back for more goodies.
Or perhaps you learned some WordPress skills. Great! But does everyone in your network know that? And after you tapped out your 5 friends and family, how do you tell the world and get to YOUR ideal client? And what makes you different from others who have a list of clients 10 feet long?
So start first with assessing your skills. Don’t start with the business plan. Interview a few entrepreneurs/small business owners. Find three that you admire who are willing to tell you their story – their HONEST story – about how they built the business. And then compare what skills they have to the skills you have and will need to develop.
And don’t worry about finding the uber successful entrepreneur. Find three-five freelancers or micro-business owners to interview. Get them to tell you the story of how they started.
Sample questions like:
- Where did you get funding? Self? Family? Friends?
- How did you first start marketing your business?
- What was your first big sale? How did you get it?
- How did you learn about finances?
- How did you figure out how to set your sales #s, your expenses, etc?
- What would you do differently?
Grade yourself on a scale of #1-10 on the following subject areas:
Grade yourself honestly. No one is looking at the results!!! lol. What the number represents to you is where you’ll need to put in some work.
Don’t worry if it’s low in many or all categories. It just means that you need to listen to more stories from business owners about what they did and practice those lessons yourself. Attend courses and networking events that help entrepreneurs. Or speed up your learning and hire a coach to help you identify and resolve your trouble spots.
Let me know your “ahas” from the conversations! I’d love to hear what stands out for you below in the comments.