I know what your thinking… Covid.
With the financial uncertainty going on in the world, why risk starting a business? Why not stay in that comfort zone of yours? Why not keep warm and try again when the sun is shining? News flash. The next time that sun starts shining, you could be an old fart who wasted their time waiting for that perfect moment.
Here are five things I learnt during these past nine months, starting with an idea to now finalising our pitch to investors this month.
1. Persistence is key.
In the modern day, we are seduced by all the seamless online orders with their perfect, up to date tracking information.
However, when you are trying to get your business up and running, it is you who has to keep knocking on that door. Nobody is updating anything for you and people will not go out of their way to help you.
Especially when you are cheeky and try to do as much as you can without spending any money. This is why persisting and letting them now that you are not going anywhere is key in order to avoid standing still and loose that precious momentum.
2. Weak ties help you more than strong ones.
The concept of weak ties came from an incredible book by clinical psychologist Meg Jay.
Strong ties are your close friends that tend to bring little to no outside value into your life aside from just being there for you. Weak ties are the people you meet at a networking event and exchange LinkedIn information with.
During these nine months, it has been several weak ties I had connected with over the years that helped me, not any of my strong ties. In fact, most of the strong ties were extreme distractions and slowed down the rate of growth.
3. Things don’t go to plan.
Ouch. That one hurt.
At the start of the journey, you can have your mind set on one way to go down but the chances are, it will not work.
I cannot count how many times we had to change the direction we went in but it circles back into the importance of keeping your options open. If you think that having one set plan is the guarantteed way to go, your delusional.
Sure, that plan may work but chances are you will find some hiccups along the way. So spend some time before executing plan A on plan B so that once you start riding that horse and pick up some speed, you don’t have to put everything on hold to find that new option.
4. Something is better than nothing.
Most of us just work a set amount of hours during the week and do whatever we like on the weekends.
When you are starting up a company, there are no formal hours and time off. It is down to you to accomplish everything in the to-do list one by one and some days, you just feel like kicking it on the sofa till the sun goes down.
That is where the beautiful Japanese concept, ‘Kaizen’ comes to save the day.
Kaizen focuses on making daily improvements and when I had those days of wanting to kick back and take it easy, I would incorporate this principal of accomplishing something on that list. As something is always better, than nothing.
5. You never know unless you try.
So many of us have these million dollar ideas dancing around in our minds but the truth is, only 1% of us actually try make it into a reality.
It’s sad because when people don’t give their ideas a go, they instantly close up any other opportunities that could appear just from putting themselves out there. Whatever idea you have roaming around in that wonderful brain of yours, let it ride the rollercoaster because you don’t know what life might throw back at you when you jump on.
So there you have it. Five out of many more lessons I encountered. I did not want to make you read a lengthy article so I stopped at five. Till next time my friend…
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