Entrepreneurship: Jumping Without a Parachute

Hundreds of books in bookstores. Thousands of online articles and blogs. Basically, more information than one human being can process in a lifetime. So, what can you do to get your new business up and running? A better question might be: What advice should you follow to ensure early success, so there’s a foundation on which to build?

It hasn’t been too many years since almost every business guru insisted that the new company had to have a written business plan. In fact, once the initial consultation with this mentor was complete, the next step was to create the plan, in writing, with clearly stated goals and a defined path that would take the new owner to the objective.

In Reality

There is still a need for goals. That much hasn’t changed. One of the surviving truths of being in business has to do with targets. As sales and self-improvement personality Zig Ziglar wrote many years ago, “You can’t hit a target you don’t have.” But, a new wrinkle is appearing on the start-up horizon, one that encourages you, the entrepreneur, to dispense with a complex business plan and gain real-world experience during the time it would have taken you to write that plan.

This line of thinking takes you through a process much different from what you might imagine is necessary to be part of the global economy, especially the world of online sales and service. One of the first bits of advice from this “school of thought” is that you don’t have to catch the newest wave at the age of 20 to become the next big “thing.” In fact, you probably shouldn’t do this at all.

Why not?

That’s a great question, one that every business owner or manager should ask. The answer is simple, really. If you studied the experience of 10 new businesses, you’d find only about one highly successful business start-up is the creation of a 20-something wizard who invented the better mousetrap, software program, or marketing tool. The rest probably gained their knowledge and experience working for an established company, then ventured out after identifying a product or service need that wasn’t being met.

It’s Already There

Consider this excellent “help” graphic from Autodoc, for example. People live in a mobile world, one that is seriously dependent on vehicle transportation. This is not going to change in the near future. One company obviously recognizes this and has taken a basic need (reliable brakes) and presented the subject with some of the up-to-date tools available to every business owner today.

With the use of readily available web-design tools, graphics, and great content, you too can be one of the growing businesses that benefits from Internet technology. It’s possible to market and sell almost anything this way. After all, one young entrepreneur did it with steel, of all things! How did this happen?

Business owners who have found success in the past few years understood that information and communication were the keys to success (not necessarily the mousetrap itself). You don’t have to spend days and weeks on a business plan, though you should have a target, a goal you can identify. Start today by filling in the blank, “I want to…….” Then get started learning how.