In 2011 an ex-colleague leapt in with both feet and started his own business; nobody knew if or how it would work and as somebody who was involved near the beginning, I certainly had my doubts about some of what he was doing. After not speaking for nearly a year – purely because I didn’t have enough time to work with him and work my full-time job, I’ve caught up with him this week and things are going really well. He’s negotiating big contracts, had an offer to buy the business, (one which I would have taken and then gone travelling for a few years with) and is generally loving what he’s doing.
Now I have just as many business ideas and just as much knowledge about how to get a business off the ground as he does but for some reason, I’m working for somebody else. I’ve just taken my career in a new direction and I’m enjoying my job but I know that I’d be more satisfied if I was doing it for myself. So why don’t I and why does he? Confidence!
The one thing this guy has absolutely oodles of is confidence, he simply can’t fail because it hasn’t even entered his head as an option. The what ifs, buts and maybes which plague me just aren’t there for him and when they do occasionally pop up, he knows exactly how to handle his own objections. He’s happy to take risks because he knows he has the ability to make everything work; I’m reluctant to take risk for fear of failure and that seems to be the key difference between those who do and those who don’t.
So how do I become a person who does? At some point, I think you just have to take the plunge and accept the fact that you might not be entirely successful but make the decision that it’s better to try. I think I’ve gotten halfway there by taking my current job, it’s the first one I’ve taken that I haven’t been 100% sure I could do but I took it because it got me closer to my end goal. Now I need to build on that and maximise every opportunity that comes my way until I reach my end goal of creating the opportunities myself.
Here goes!!! x
3 thoughts on “Taking the Plunge”
Fear of failure can be a driver too, as long as it doesn’t take over. I think a positive start to any business would be to do a small bit of research into what would become your competition. This can be a big eye opener in terms of how easy a business actually operates.
Next step is to network with the people you would need to make the business successful. This could be suppliers, customers or even friends with skills you could use. Get anything you can for free. So many college students have skills that they would like to match with experience, which in essence means you can get stuff for free if you’re willing to give them a chance.
And then once you have a business plan on paper. Start to market the business and as you have said, take the plunge.
A good word of advice that always serves me well. Good business people like to show off. So by talking to them you learn so much about how they are running their business, what they are doing next and other useful snippets of information that you would have to pay a consultant for. Get talking to people and you’ll be off before you know it.
Very inspiring post! -I too wouldn’t have the confidence to my own businesses, but really respect people who do.
Sometimes you just need a mentor to help guide you through the process. As long as you’re willing to work for it, it’s not as daunting as it may seem. Just write all your ideas down and do pros and cons on them. But anyone can do it, they just need a little help and building confidence.