What It Takes To Be An Entrepreneur

Why No One Believed You When You Said You'd Make it Big

Written by Jay Shapiro for Gaebler Ventures

You never went to business school; you've only ever worked as an employee for someone else. Suddenly you got that 'eureka' moment and come up with a great business idea. Funny then that no-one believed you'd make it a reality.

You had the great business idea, but when you ran it by your friends and family you got the impression they were skeptical and rolling their eyes.

Same with the bank manager, although he liked the idea in theory, he was reticent about it working. Why?

Because you lacked experience.

These days we can get a little too fixated on the technicalities and that often means we pass up really good opportunities simply because they come from someone who has no industry history.

Really there's no reason why an idea dreamed up by an out-of-work plumber can't end up being as successful as one conceived by an experienced entrepreneur with a wealth of 'business qualifications' to his/her name.

In fact sometimes the ideas that are born out of real life, real world, real people experience are superior to those that are manufactured in a business think tank.

Consider how many 'manufactured' bands make it big when compared to the many organically formed groups that do. Yes there is success to be had from taking a formula that works and repeating it. But it can get tired quite quickly.

It's drummed into us not to think 'pie in the sky'. But, the entrepreneur who does, and follows ideas through is often the one everyone had doubts about.

'That'll never work' syndrome is prevalent in the business world. This is because so much depends on the narrowing of risks and being as sure as it is possible to be sure about ideas before investing time and money into them.

See now why people find it hard to have faith?

It's because:

  • They have been trained to think practically and this can have a negative impact on their ability to think creatively and envision.
  • They are afraid of making mistakes.
  • They don't want to look foolish.
  • They fear their reputations will be ruined if they invest on something that doesn't work out.
  • They don't like change, or new things.
  • They prefer to live life in a 'so called' conventional way
  • They mistakenly believe that success is something that happens to other people, remote people, not those in their circle.

So what can you do if you've got an excellent idea but you're getting brick-walled in terms of outsider belief and commitment?

It might be that your idea is good but you're not explaining or demonstrating it clearly enough. Give examples of why your product is better than others. Show people what it can do. Is it cheaper but more effective than rival products? Prove it.

Wrong audience

Your revolutionary meat-grinder might be a marvel of modern technology, but the concept isn't going down well at the Vegetarians Unite meetings. Hello?

Talking but not showing

Remember the old saying 'seeing is believing'? This doesn't just apply to ghosts and miracles. People like to 'see' what something can do if they are truly to believe in it. If you haven't yet built prototypes then at least make sure your 'theory' explains exactly how the product works.

Good luck!

Jay Shapiro is a freelance writer based in the UK. Jay has a particular interest in the emotive aspects of the entrepreneur's character. "Alongside the nuts and bolts of business, the character of the person is often the ingredient responsible for success."

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