What They Don’t Tell You About Starting Your Own Business
Yes, starting your own business is wonderful. You wake up when you want, work from where you want and never have to sit through a boring meeting. Now you are the boss and its great!!
However, this freedom does not come on a platter. Not every becomes a flipkart and the journey is not for the faint hearted. So let’s take a down-and-dirty look at what really goes on in a fledgling business.
I have my own company and have been working on it for the last two years after quitting a short corporate career. We are ramping up now and looking forward to our successful future with stars in our eyes. I wrote this article so that if you have aspirations of starting your own business, you should know what’s up ahead so you can be ready for the ride. Don’t let this scare you, let it prepare you.
Let’s get to it:
- Start Somewhere
”Kahin pe pahunchne ke liye kahin se nikalna bahit zaroori hota hai“.
This famous line from Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani epitomizes the startup journey. What you end up with may not be what you started with but things evolve as you go along and what you end up with will be different. So don’t overthink things… start somewhere and evolve as you go. I started with an app only company that became a website and it all worked out just fine. Before that I started an ecommerce venture but that did not take off as well as I would have wanted.
The first version of your idea will be wrong. People won’t want it, or you won’t want to do it. More than likely your first website won’t be your last. Until you’re in the field it’s hard to know what it’s really like to live with, and when you get there you’ll soon learn what you need to change.
So don’t spend too much on that first logo!!
- You will want to quit
More than once you will think you have made a huge mistake even starting this. You cannot see the future. You will miss your cushy job (if you had one). But, in the immortal words of Barfi “Life main sabse bada risk hota hai, koi risk nahin lena”. So stick with it.
- Your family and friends won’t get it
Mamaji will tell you”Kya, itni acchi naukri kyun chod di?””. Your friend Rajeev will tell you why his business idea is what you should do and yours sucks; while still being in a cushy corporate job. Some might support you and you may need to build some new friends who understand your journey. Ask yourself what’s important… your happiness, or someone else’s mild discomfort at introducing you at weddings? Sticking with the friends who truly care rather than the ones who only stick around because you both hate what you do?
In the words of Abhishek Bacchan in Guru; “Jab log tumhare khilaaf bolne lagen, samajh lo tarakki kar rahe ho”.
- Success doesn’t come overnight
Dwayne “the Rock”Johnson; said it best. “Success doesn’t come overnight, its when every day you get a little better than the day before. It all adds up”.
“Work “smart”. Don’t confuse activity with progress. Do things that matter and don’t do too many things. Work your butt off.
Success will come ….but you will have to wait for it. Patience is truly a virtue and very hard to learn. You have to practice it.
- Know when to Quit
Perhaps the biggest lesson we can learn in life is knowing when to quit! This is one lesson no one can teach you. You have to learn it on your own. All I can say is..try your hardest, and when you feel it’s not getting better it’s time to move on.
The reasons can be many. It could be a dysfunctional team; a failing business model or simply not getting funding and inability to sustain. But it’s important to remember that you are not quitting, you are choosing to focus your energy elsewhere on something more important or valuable at this point in your life. Bill Gates of Microsoft and Evan Williams of Twitter both failed at their first venture. So hold your head high and move on to your next venture. And never regret your decision or think what might have been.
What Do You Think!.