Why Entrepreneurship is now for everyone
Great article by Guy Wilson
Apart from the initial 5 years of my working life, I have been a full-time entrepreneur. This has allowed me to lead the kind of life that many would dream of.
Nevertheless, the path I took to becoming an entrepreneur is, I believe, now totally outdated and I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone!
One of the businesses Mike (my brother) and I co-founded provided large corporates with software solutions that were well ahead of their time. Our business grew to be one of the largest software business of its type in Australia at the time. And we are pleased to say that business had a very happy ending.
However, the story could very easily have been very different. On at least 4 occasions we were wondering how we would pay the staff. And on numerous occasions, we found ourselves at the bank pleading for additional cash. And at the time the bank was charging us in excess of 20% interest p.a.
I was heartened by a comment from Richard Branson I recently read in which he described some painful experiences he had endured with his bank in his early days.
The traditional (and my view completely outdated and unnecessary) picture of an entrepreneur is one who is prepared to take large risks in order to reap potentially large rewards.
Why would you take large risks unless you had to – especially when the statistical chance of success is definitely stacked against you?
Perhaps every entrepreneurial spirit would answer differently as to WHY they took the risks
Here are my answers as to why I took the large (and in my view, no longer necessary) risks:
- I wanted to live life rather than endure it (as so many seem to).
- I wanted the combination of time as well as money which would allow me to create great memories relationships and experiences with my family and make a difference in the lives of others. I wanted to be in control of my decisions and to be able to pursue the adventures I wanted to pursue.
- I never wanted to be part of the TGIF (Thank God it’s Friday) club! One may well ask: What’s next? The TGIO (Thank God It’s Over) Club?
- I soon realised working for someone else would never give me the financial freedom to enjoy the kind of life I wanted.
My advice to aspiring entrepreneurs is, to begin with the end in mind
- What personal results do you want your entrepreneurial pursuits to deliver?
- Free Time?
- Secure and sufficient income (type is just as important as amount)?
- Having a purpose which inspires you?
- Enjoying the journey?
- You complete this list….
Fortunately, technology means that it’s now easier than ever to achieve the results of entrepreneurship without taking the risks the entrepreneurs of old were forced to take.
Unfortunately, it’s equally true that the ever-increasing adoption of technology also means it’s increasingly risky to rely on just being an employee.
In other words, do you have any choice but to start something ‘on the side’ of traditional employment (dig the well before you need the water)?
In his book ‘End of Jobs’ Taylor Pearson quite correctly says:
“What Seth and others have hinted at is that entrepreneurship isn’t just a life choice people are making simply because they are passionate about it, but rather because, for the first time, it’s safer, more accessible, and more profitable than ever before.
In short, it’s now safer to be an entrepreneur than it is to be an employee”
This book outlines what we already know: progressively jobs are becoming shorter in term and more difficult to obtain. There really is no such thing as job security anymore. We should instead be thinking in terms of personal income security.
It’s wise for you to consider how you can use technology to ‘clip the ticket’ to achieve leveraged income security, free time and the other benefits we would often associate with entrepreneurship.
It’s just a matter of starting a progressive change in thinking matching the changes made possible by rapid technological advances.
For example, if you are an employee, you could start by changing your thinking to ‘I am a business providing another business with a service’. When you figure out a better way of providing that service, many other opportunities may find their way to you.
In my view, the safest, fastest and least risky way to achieve the entrepreneurial results you may desire is to engage with other like-minded people in building a collaborative 2-dimensional network (Click the following: ‘Time to Disrupt Networking’ for an explanation).
Ideally, start with the goal of building a network of Know Like & Trust relationships before you have decided on what entrepreneurial pursuit you will apply that network to.
This is totally counter-intuitive. Most people believe they need to find what they believe is a killer-can’t-fail idea and then find ways of marketing that idea by all means possible – including networking.
Good question: How many ‘killer-can’t-fail’ ideas have you seen fail?
And what sort of debt and personal destruction do such ‘failed’ great ideas usually leave in their wake?
Equally, how many fairly average ideas have you seen that actually succeed?
What’s the difference? Usually, it’s not the quality of the idea. It’s many other factors and especially the network you have that can support you and your new idea.
Visualise this for a moment: you have a Know Like & Trust network of networking building advocates. In other words, you have an ever-expanding group of people who will bring business to you rather than you having to chase it. People who will sell you instead of you having to sell yourself.
Further, visualise that you are simply an intermediary ‘clipping the ticket’ on the ever-increasing market you can create for multiple products or services. In other words, you don’t have the hassles or risk of owning a traditional business – you don’t have stock, employees, offices, etc
But you do have an ever-increasing income stream!
When you are the one with the trusted connections, you can connect the right people with the right people. And others will advocate for you.
It doesn’t matter what products or services you choose: it could be insurance, solar, real estate, financial investment, a new invention, just to name a few.
Contrary to popular opinion, good concepts or ideas are not in short supply!
What they generally lack is the connections to make them work. The old adage: ‘It’s not what you know, it’s who you know’ is truer now than it has ever been.
As you build an exponentially growing two-dimensional network, you will discover all kinds of great ideas that are easy to support and have exciting potential. Ideas which are scalable and on which you can ‘clip the ticket’. You will also have the opportunity to discuss these ideas with others whose judgement you have come to trust.
You will find the network of Know Like & Trust relationships more valuable than the stream of ‘great ideas’ which come and go.
When you understand how easily a two-dimensional network can be developed by collaborating with like-minded others to effectively and efficiently transition digital connections (such as LinkedIn connections) to face-to-face connections, you will have discovered the secret to becoming a very successful entrepreneur with very little risk.
Bottom-line: See the two-dimensional network of Know Like & Trust relationships you build as the greatest asset you will ever build – the asset which feeds all your entrepreneurial endeavours – risk-free.
If you have not already connected with Mike and me, please do so. If you are like-minded and know you’d like to achieve different results we would love to meet you in person and see how we may be able to help.
Cheers, GuyPosted on September 24, 2018