10 Startup Tips
Chapter 4: How to Be an Entrepreneur?
We are all angles with one wing,
and we must embrace each other to learn to fly. – Aysa Angel
According to the Collin English Dictionary,
the word “entrepreneur” is derived from the French word “to undertake”
– which dates back to the 19th century.
The exact definition is:
The owner of a business that uses risk
and initiative to make a profit.
To become an entrepreneur,
you have to make time for two things:
Be someone who is willing to take risks
I had to drop out of an economics degree.
However, there is one basic economic formula
that pops up in my mind of the middle of my naps:
Profit is the reward for risk.
To be successful, you must be prepared to take risks.
The most obvious risk everyone sees is financial risk.
But there is a greater risk that no one dares to admit.
It’s the fear of being different from the crowd.
It is the fear of being judged
by those around you.
It’s not the fear of failure,
it’s the fear of being seen as a failure by colleagues,
of being seen as stupid.
it’s the fear of rejection.
This fear is the biggest barrier to becoming an entrepreneur.
My first business was making yearbooks
for my senior year in college.
It was a bad book
because there were a lot of unedited pictures,
a few vulgar words.
I invested about a thousand pounds to print this yearbook.
Then came graduation day.
I set up a stall and stood selling,
smiling and nervously waiting for people to come and buy books.
The first to appear was a sleazy scholar
who looked like Herman Munster1.
He picked up a yearbook and flipped through it
while I nervously watched my first client’s reaction.
He tossed it back on the table and said,
“That sucks! A disgrace to the school’s name.
I will put an end to this immediately.”
He turned and trudged away.
I never heard of or saw him again.
Then a lot of students came and bought
(or more accurately,
I made enough money to pay for the printing press
and my first business was successful.
But I’m also really worried.
His remarks disappointed me,
and years later,
I still remember feeling scared that day.
this isn’t the only risk of walking into the room
and telling your boss you’re quitting.
You have to be a risk taker in business.
• Risks in creating different products/services.
• Take risks with marketing
and advertising campaigns for an opportunity
to quickly overcome rumors and disinformation.
• Face inevitable rejections when selling your idea.
But you can learn to handle the problem better.
Entrepreneurship is a matter of behavior
and we can change it.
As soon as we overcome our fear of public speaking,
we can learn to be risk-takers.
it takes about 7 to 21 days to form a new habit or behavior,
so why not practice some of the exercises below?
Exercise 1: Get rid of those who stand in your way
I’m working as a marketing consultant for the founder
of a successful computer company.
This is someone who can talk all night.
He is passionate
and has many good stories about the early days of computers,
drinking with Bill Gates,
about when he first set up the artificial satellite system.
But when looking at the company image and marketing,
it is very bleak,
boring and ordinary.
“Why don’t you put your enthusiasm
and creativity into the business?”
“We have a client called McTaggarts of Dundee,” he said.
This is a family company with hundreds of years of history.
They are very important to us
and we have to wear suits
and ties all the time,
or they won’t do business with us anymore.”
they let the McTaggarts of Dundee customer control their operations
for the remaining 99% of customers,
while hindering the company’s own growth.
The point is we all have customers like McTaggarts.
They can be customers who criticize us,
friends who are always annoyed
because we are more successful than them,
loved ones who don’t want us to get hurt,
teachers who are one-sided
or life partners will worry about mortgages.
Another problem is that we listen to them
and accept their limitations.
They keep us from thinking
and acting proactively and efficiently.
They make it impossible for us to think differently,
creatively and in a business direction.
Exercise 2: Facing your fear
Entrepreneurs don’t become brave overnight.
They took it step by step.
Many successful entrepreneurs are influenced by their mothers,
who nurtured their entrepreneurial personalities from an early age.
Richard Branson’s mother used to drive him to the countryside
and let him find his own way home
(if you have a hyperactive child, I know this is a great idea).
Mom of Billl Cullen,
a prominent businessman from Ireland,
often asked him to go shopping.
Then she told him to bring it back
and bargain with the salesman for his money back.
By facing your fear day by day,
you will find that it is the dark corner of your imagination
that has nurtured that fear.
When I was eight years old,
I was given a role in T. S. Eliot’s play “Murder in the Cathedral”.
And the bad thing was that
we couldn’t get together to rehearse.
The first performance was held
in front of all the students in the school.
But I still haven’t memorized the lines.
I thought, “No problem.
It’s the same with everyone
and someone will act awkwardly before it’s their turn.”
Only the other students are not like that.
So, I stood alone on stage in front of 200 friends
who were staring at me and couldn’t say a word.
The hot-tempered drama teacher reminded me…
but I still don’t know… he repeated…
I remained silent.
In front of the whole school,
he went up on stage,
yelled at me on stage and canceled the show.
do I feel scared when I have to speak in public?
The answer is “No”.
That traumatic event can happen to anyone
because compared to now,
that day was like a walk in the park.
The Royal Air Force Parachute School has a very nice slogan:
Knowledge dispels fear.
They make practitioners practice repeatedly jumping out
of a comfortable plane.
They’ll let you jump from a bench, then a wall,
then a scaffold.
By the time you learned to jump from a plane,
you were fed up with the practice
and threw yourself out of the plane without fear.
Let’s apply the same way.
• Write down your worst possible fears in business.
• Try to find a solution to them.
If it’s a sale,
start making a list of easy calls.
If it’s public speaking,
find a club or school where you can speak
and don’t have to worry if the presentation goes wrong.
gradually create bigger challenges.
You’ll soon find out that the things
that used to scare you the most are actually not scary at all.
We’ll look at overcoming barriers and fears throughout this book.
However, you may be too nervous
because of a specific fear to take action.
Exercise 3: Become an immigrant
It is no coincidence that many successful entrepreneurs are immigrants.
What is the reason?
They have no feelings and hurt the new land.
They can break the rules,
make a lot of mistakes,
and not have to worry about the neighbors peeking
over the fence and saying,
“Doesn’t he have a better job?”
If you can’t get to another area,
there are a few ways you can become a “virtual immigrant”
even within your own family:
Steve Jobs was offered a job
by Apple computer company to help the company grow.
He worries that prevailing ideology does not support innovation.
So he formed a group called “SkunkWorks”.
This group works in a different building,
does not contact
or talk to other employees of the company.
They even hung a flag of pirates on the roof.
Finally, the group launched the iPod music player.
don’t talk about your plans to family or friends.
If you want to discuss it,
tell someone whose opinion doesn’t bother you.