Becoming an entrepreneur, although exciting, can be very difficult if you do not have the right mindset and strategy. And even then, there may be many problems that you would need to overcome. Things happen.
All successful entrepreneurs face challenges. However, it is important to know how to overcome these challenges and get stronger along the way.
Here we discuss a few of those challenges and how to deal with them.
Self-doubt is one of the things you will have to deal with. In the beginning, you might doubt your ability to get the business up and running. Then you might question your ability to keep the business afloat. Whatever the cause, a good support system is invaluable—friends and family should always be there for you to give you a shoulder to lean on.
By listing your goals and planning everything, you will be able to regain your motivation when you are feeling down. Remember that every task you complete takes you one step closer to success. There is no room for self-doubt when it comes to business.
Identifying what to sell
When starting a business, even with passion and skills, an entrepreneur would need to decide what to sell. Market research would need to be conducted to identify the demand for the chosen product or service. If you are weak in this area, consider hiring an experienced researcher to do it for you. You don’t necessarily need a huge professional team—as long as the person you hire can provide a report with a complete SWOT analysis, possible profit margins, and suggested niches, you are good. By doing this, you will spare yourself the hassle and save lots of money and time.
Developing a marketing strategy
Without a proper marketing plan, you won’t be able to create awareness for your products or services and engage customers to choose your brand. With market research, you will be in a better position to create a marketing strategy. Seek the expertise of someone who can provide efficient marketing advice so that you can maximize your return on investment. Let them know your budget and tell them what audience your product or service is aimed at.
Setting a budget
Managing a business can be very unpredictable. Therefore, you, as an entrepreneur, must know how to set a budget. You need to prioritize efficient marketing strategies and then allocate the rest based on their advantages to your business. When you are able to decipher the necessary expenses, you will be in a better position to adjust your funds to start or continue your business.
Raising startup capital
Entrepreneurs who start with little capital have a few options to earn funding to kickstart their new undertaking: federal small business loans, traditional bank loans, or fundraising campaigns. Rather than attempting to launch a corporation worth millions overnight, you need to focus on satisfying your potential customers. If you consistently satisfy them, word of mouth will spread like wildfire, and more customers will come. When your customer base continues to increase, ensure that you employ systems and processes to continually provide high-quality products or services. Slowly but surely your business will grow.
Cash flow management
Cash flow management is an important element of survival for small businesses. Many entrepreneurs experience difficulty paying bills. The job is done and the invoice is sent out, however, it takes approximately 30 days in most instances for payment to be received. Meanwhile, an entrepreneur has to make a lot of payments: the mortgage, groceries, paying employees and contractors, and much more. Things become much worse when there are not as many customers as you wish.
Even a well-thought-out budget can’t always prepare you for certain eventualities. What may help is requiring a downpayment for your products and services. Sometimes it would be enough to cover some expenses. That way, at least you can rest assured that you won’t be at a disadvantage.
What may help too is a shorter invoice period—15 days as opposed to the typical 30 days. That will give you two weeks to try to address any payments before your next month’s bills are due. These days, more businesses are requiring instant payment for sales made, especially since payments can be made from mobile devices. Perhaps you can take that route as well.
You can also achieve positive cash flow by requesting that your vendors invoice you at 40, 60, or 90 days so that you have ample time to receive payments from your customers. That should be easy if you have been a good customer and have a good relationship with your vendors.
The hiring process can be very intimidating because it is time-consuming and tedious. You can spare yourself the hassle by ensuring that your vacancy notice is super specific in terms of required qualifications and daily duties. Request references and conduct interviews with potential employees. When you find the ideal candidate, ensure that your job offer fosters a mutually beneficial long-term employee-employer relationship.
When you are new in business and just starting out, you may not have the knowledge needed to prevent phishing attacks. This is, unfortunately, something that many entrepreneurs tend to ignore and then deal with the consequences. One of the most popular examples is the scam that Facebook and Google had to face. Both companies used Quanta as their vendor, which the attacker took advantage of. A bunch of fake invoices was sent to Facebook and Google employees. Obviously, these invoices were paid. And even though both companies took legal action, only $49.7 million of the $100 million stolen was recovered.
You don’t want this to happen to you, right? That is why you need to know how to protect yourself. Install security software, keep your software updated, use multi-factor authentication and, if you have the phone number of the person sending you messages or emails, PhoneHistory will help you find out who it is. Also, never provide any financial information to anyone you don’t know.
Entrepreneurs experience a number of challenges along their journey—from doubting their abilities to get the business off the ground to difficulty keeping it afloat. An understanding of what is required for a successful business will help you become a professional. If you follow all of the above tips and incorporate them into your plans, you will be much closer to realizing your dream of running a successful company.