With AI, AR and blockchain on the rise, now seems like a perfectly good and reasonable time to invest in one of the mentioned high-tech options and create your very own small business. All you need to do is find people who will work for small wages and overtime, and you can begin calling yourself a “startup”.
That’s how it goes, right?
Just kidding—no, it doesn’t.
With technology constantly evolving, it’s true that having your own business and becoming the next Jeff Bezos or Jack Ma seems more possible than ever before. If this is the case, though, why aren’t we all bursting with new ideas and trying to create a new, let’s say, Amazon? What’s stopping us?
Well, the fact that being an entrepreneur in 2018 is not as easy as you might think.
According to Fitsmallbusiness.com, 46% of businesses fail due to incompetence, 30% due to lack of managerial experience, 11% due to lack of experience, and the rest due to fraud, natural disasters and neglect. To sum it all up: almost half of all small businesses failed in 2017.
Furthermore, if we mention that 30% of entrepreneurs work 50-59 hours per week, would you still consider it to be an “easy job”? Working 60 hours a week to make something that has almost 50% chance of failing? It sounds like only an insane person would take such a risk.
Some would say an insane person, while others—a true entrepreneur.
Becoming an entrepreneur is not a decision you can make overnight and lightly. In fact—this decision requires a lot of self-questioning, self-doubt and worrying. However, if you make it to the other side after all that torture, and still want to start a small business, it’s probably a sign you are ready to embark on this amazing journey.
Being an entrepreneur requires commitment, a lot of hard work, patience and belief in yourself. It calls for a strong will and an enormous amount of ambition. A true business owner knows that the market is constantly changing and that having a business requires adapting to those changes as fast as possible.
So, what does 2018 hold for entrepreneurs? What does it actually mean to be an entrepreneur in this day and age?
In this post, we’re going to talk about about six tips and tricks that will help you learn what being an entrepreneur is like and help you become the founder you always wanted to be.
Never Underestimate the Power of Networking
Never underestimate its power, not even 20 years from now! As an entrepreneur, you have to be everywhere. It goes without saying that you should attend all the meetups, lectures, conferences and any events you feel like you can benefit from.
Why? Because being an entrepreneur (not just in 2018) means always searching for new sources of knowledge and ways to expand your horizons. Not only that, by participating in the startup/tech community, you get a chance to meet a bunch of people who have the experience you need. Most of them, fortunately, are willing to give you a piece of advice or two on how to manage your team, be a leader and create a healthy company culture.
Also, be sure to remember—networking is not a one-time thing. It creates relationships between people. So, after you have met a couple of fellow entrepreneurs and exchanged contacts, don’t hesitate to give them a call and meet for a cup of coffee. There are a lot of things people are inclined to share in an eye-to-eye communication.
Be persistent and find your place in the community. Well, nobody said being an entrepreneur in 2018 is easy, right?
Validate Your Idea as Soon as Possible
Nowadays, nobody has the time to spend months building a product and then validating it. On the contrary—validating your idea should be your top priority. Why? Because you’ll get an answer to the questions you have been asking yourself all that time: Does my product/service have a chance to make it? Is my dream really going to come to life?
Our advice to you is to present the product (or an MVP) to its potential customers as soon as you feel ready. That way, you’ll get the much-needed feedback and, if the validation goes well, you will be able to work on the product and adjust it to your users’ wishes.
Being an entrepreneur is all about being active and proactive.
This leads us to our next tip.
Bravery Is Always Highly Rewarded
Once you feel like the product is completed and market-ready, launch it! Be brave and just go for it.
Being an entrepreneur is about being brave and bold. But, make no mistake: being brave is not synonymous with being a gambler. Bravery requires mental or physical strength which is demonstrated as the willingness to do something in spite of a dangerous, threatening situation. Validating your product/service on a cruel market which sometimes feels like it consists out of angry piranhas? Sounds brave to us!
Please remember that most entrepreneurs show bravery by not letting anyone stop them on their journey. Even if they fail, they failed because of their own decisions, not because they were afraid to succeed.
On that matter, there is one final advice we can give you. Once you finally decide to launch your product, start marketing it before the launch. Prepare yourself for the launch and be positive about it. Let your marketing plan do the magic.
Keep an Eye on the Market Change
If anyone knows what it’s like being an entrepreneur, it’s definitely Neil Patel. In one of his recent posts, Patel mentioned the change in the market—in 2018, the term disruptive innovation is the most important thing to remember. What does it mean?
Well, although this term has been present since 1995, it has reached its full glory in the past couple of years. It can be described as something innovative, done by a startup. So, what is so special about innovation? Well, this innovative product is capable of making a huge impact on the industry, stepping on even the biggest industry competitors. One of the examples of disruptive innovation, as Neil states, is Airbnb.
In our blog post about 5 business lessons, we mentioned how Airbnb almost made a huge mistake that could have cost it its reputation. Thanks to being open and owning up to the mistake, its founder managed to save the business. That is precisely what disruptive innovation is: being able to make an enormous boom in the market (and cast a shadow on industry leaders), and being able to manage that boom. Other examples include Facebook, Zoom, Amazon, etc.
Don’t get us wrong—being an entrepreneur doesn’t mean having a brilliant, Facebook-like business idea which will shake the market to its core. You just have to recognize the trend and be aware of the fact that, at the same moment you are thinking about your idea, another entrepreneur-to-be is probably having a similar idea to yours and is looking for a way to become successful on the market.
To conclude: be aware of the trends, not afraid of them.
Say Yes to a Remote Team
Did you know that employees tend to be 20% more productive when they are are working on a project remotely? Not only that—they are able to sleep more, which makes them feel more rested and alerted. If you are thinking about having a remote team, now is the time to jump on this bandwagon.
Why should you give it chance? Well, if the statement about productivity didn’t convince you, maybe thinking about operating costs will. Being an entrepreneur also means keeping an eye on the costs. If you give it a thought, you can save a couple thousands of dollars on an office space and invest it in other company infrastructure. Doesn’t sound that bad, right?
So, before you rush to rent an office, do the math and read through the following facts:
- More and more industries are embracing remote working (The New York Times).
- Some people find it easier to work from home than others (Forbes).
- In a remote team, keys to a good cooperation are trust and open communication (Gethppy.com).
This is why we are all about remote software development.
You Can’t Avoid AI
According to Forbes, Artificial Intelligence is now bigger than the Internet was when it first appeared. From self-driving cars and customer-facing service, to data scientists being in high demand, the market is moving towards this advanced technology.
Sure, not everyone can have or even want to build a company similar to Tesla Inc, but what they are not aware of is that they are probably following this trend by using collaborative tools on a daily basis.
Let’s face it—AI is all around us. If you are not interested in creating self-driving cars, just keep an eye on this particular trend. You never how it might be able to help your business grow.
Out of all these tips and tricks, we have to highlight the one you should always bear in mind. If you are a new entrepreneur who is working on developing a product, don’t let these trends scare you. Use them to your advantage and prove that anyone can make it in 2018, with a bit of luck and a brave heart.
It is important to be present. Being an entrepreneur in 2018 doesn’t mean following the most advanced technology and trends at all cost. It means being up-to-date when it comes to the newest market trends and combining old-time business principles.
In the end, it all comes down to listening to your intuition and what the market/new trends have to say.
We wish you good luck on your journey!
Thank you for reading the article until the very end. What do you think, is it hard being an entrepreneur in 2018? Are there any entrepreneurial tips and tricks we haven’t mentioned? Share them with us in the comment section below!