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5 Important Tips to Overcome Business Start Up Fears

Just a week ago, I met two of my college friends. It’s been (4) years since we’ve last seen each other, so we decided to have a cup of coffee to do some catching up.

We mostly talked about our life back in college, how the school culture has evolved, the people we were with, the education system our school had, and our careers. Apparently, when we got to talk about our careers, they were so shocked to know that I already have two businesses. They even got more shocked to learn that I have been investing in the stock market and still kept my day job. (If you knew me in college days, I bet you’d also be shocked.)

They were really intrigued with the fact that I already had two businesses and could even afford to to keep my full time job in one of the biggest companies in the Philippines. They asked me questions like – how I started, how big was my capital, how much do I earn, and many other questions. (I wanted to tell them to join our Truly Rich Club with Bo Sanchez and they will be able to start their own business as well.)

I had so much fun telling them my story, and even told them about my future business plans like acquiring real estate properties and renting it out to receive cash flow.

After telling them my story, I encouraged them to start their own business as well and ironically, both of them seemed to look like “squirrels trying to get back to their hole” to hide from people. The feeling in their eyes suddenly changes from excitement to sadness or worse – fear.

At one moment we were so happy talking about business and how it drastically grew my income, and eventually changed my life but when I asked them to do the same, all they could think about was the negative factors in starting a business. Both made excuses like I do not have the capital, I don’t know how to start, I’m not the business type of person, I do not have the time, I do not have the time and I do not have an idea what business to start.

It really saddens me to think that a lot of people really want a business of their own yet only a few even try to start. They complain about their income and how they are treated at their job, but they still work anyway.

In my case, I started dreaming about having a business of my own even when I was still very young. Hence, i unconsciously pursued that dream without even realizing it. Now, it wasn’t really that easy, I even failed tremendously. But as I tried more and more, I became better and better.

To help you with overcoming your business start up fears, here are (5) five tips and ideas that have greatly helped me in my business success:

Tip #1
Have A Strong Burning Desire – A Dream Life!

I put this as the number one tip because I believe that this will be the key to your business start up success. Having a strong dream will keep you going no matter how many times you will fail. Mr. Kiyosaki coins it very well when he said, “It is the WHY that is important in achieving financial abundance, not the HOW.” Know why you want a business, and the how will slowly unfold right in front of your eyes.

Tip #2
Stick To Your Guns

When I started doing business, I tried to do it all at once and never got a single result. I tried flipping foreclosed properties, opening a retail store, joining a networking business, started a logistics business, and on top of that I kept my full time job (yeah I know what you are thinking, I was crazy right.) My belief during that time was hitting a single bird with thousands of stones. I told myself, I want to succeed I must open many businesses at the same time.

Big mistake!

I ended up frustrated, emotionally drained and broke. Even worse, my friend who invested with me got all mad at me.

Now I learned my lesson. In starting a business, stick to your guns. In fact, just start with one gun first. Do not diversify and “reduce risk” (diversifying is only good when investing in the stock market). Focus your efforts in just one business first. Set-up a system to automate it and hire people and professionals to take care of it.

Based on my experience, it would often take at least two (2) to three (3) years to fully automate a business depending on your experience (learning curve) and the nature of your business.

Tip #3
Start Small Always

This inevitably reduces the fear you have inside you knowing that you are not using your entire savings to start a business. There are many ways to start small and I will discuss this also in my future posts. The important thing is, you do not loose food on your table, and be able to sleep at night knowing you still have enough to survive.

Tip #4
Learn To Sell And Market

No matter how great your business start up idea maybe, at the end of the day if nobody knew your product existed, getting sales will always be very difficult. Hey we all admit that apart from fulfilling our life mission to be successful businessmen (yes, I believe that is my life mission, I hope you too) we also want to earn money right? So how can your start up business be successful if you can’t sell a single cent from the services or products your start up business offers.

Remember this, sales and marketing will be the life blood of your business. So please be sure that your business start up has a strong sales and marketing system, that will back up your thriving business.

Tip #5
Get Yourself A Mentor

Yup, you heard it right. I had a mentor during all the times I was doing my trial and error in starting a business. Remember that in business, there is really no guarantee. The market is actually free and a lot of things could happen to your business.

Having a mentor on your side, gives you an advantage against your competitors since you are getting valuable advice from someone who has gone to the route that you are about to partake. Your business mentor will be short of a fortune teller of your future. Since he has gone to the process of failure, success, failure, success, failure and success again.

Now where to find those fabled mentors?

Actually finding a mentor is not as hard as it seems, they are actually everywhere. They can be your parents, your rich uncle, your quiet neighbor who owns hundreds of rental properties, or the old woman who goes to the same gym with you. It doesn’t have to cost you a fortune to get a mentor, you can trade services with him so that he will mentor you for free.

Ask him this question – “What is your biggest project right now that I can help you with? and of course you offer your services for free. With this effort alone, you gain his trust and his ideas on how he handles his business.

Let me end this business start up idea with the true definition of FEAR. It actually means:

F – False
E – Expectations
A – Appearing
R – Real

So when you come up with a very good business start up idea, remember that your fears are just false expectations that appear real but in real life it does not exist until you have done it. Instead of feeling fear, think of your dreams and take action, action, action, action…. until you meet success.

Successful Business – Top Reasons

1) Direction.
Every startup needs a leader with a vision. During the difficult times, the CEO needs a clear idea of the end mission and how the company needs to get there. A good business leader keeps the long-term in mind, while dealing with the immediate needs of a new company.

2) Speed to market.
You can’t be second when it comes to startups. Especially with the rate of technology development, the faster a startup can produce its service or product, the better chance it has in delivering to customers. Young businesses have to compete with established industries. One of the reasons businesses succeed is that they reach consumers first.

3) Financial savvy.
Successful startups know how to work within a budget. Managing finances and keeping a young company out of debt it can’t repay is key to becoming successful. Companies just starting out need to do more with less.

4) Well-Connected.
Just like early career builders, young startup companies can gain a leg up by knowing a few well-connected individuals. These companies use their social network for their first clients, investors, and mentors. As the old adage goes, it’s not what you know – it’s who you know.

5) Dedication.
Startups need leaders who are willing to work hard and stick to their goals. This leadership inspires others to commit to a strict work-ethic, aligned with the company’s mission. All employees must be committed and dedicated to the goal.

6) Perseverance.
Even when times get tough and the road to success offers bumps and blockages, startups need to persevere to achieve success. The majority of startups bail when money is tight or disagreements arise between founders. Successful businesses stick it out in turbulent waters and remember their end goal during difficult times.

7) Quick to Adapt.
Successful startups are comfortable with change. Leaders who know how to make smart decisions without a clear roadmap can take advantage of opportunities that more cautious companies can miss.

8) Knowing How to Attract Investors.
Money talks in the business world. Without the startup funds, companies can never get up off their feet. Smart business leaders know how to generate capital to give their million-dollar ideas a shot.

9) Confidence.
Startups need unwavering commitment to their mission and goals. Without the confidence that the company will succeed, the startup will dissolve when facing initial obstacles.

10) Efficient Time Managers.
There’s no down time when it comes to startups. If the leaders of a company are not putting in time around the clock, success is unlikely.

11) Execution.
Everyone can have a million-dollar idea. It takes moxie and strategy to put an idea into action. Knowing how to execute sets apart successful businesses from the failures.

Be Your Business’s Best Marketing Tool!

She personified everything that is displayed in the glossy magazines. Lifestyle, beauty, serenity and calmness! She is impeccably dressed, welcomes me with a huge smile, escorts me to my relaxation zone, ensures I am comfortable and happy, provides an outstanding facial using quality products (which she knows ALL about), loads me up with samples and sends me on my way.

Yep, this is much more then just your standard run of the mill facial, this is delux, creme de la creme, or as Eve puts it “The Rolls Royce” of facials! But for me this moment of “me” time is more then just a facial, it’s an entire client experience that keeps me coming back…

So, the point to my little story here (yes, there’s a point!) is that Eve is the very essence of being her business’s best marketing tool.

Often overlooked and in my opinion seriously underrated, what YOU say about your business sticks with people! And I am not just talking about when you rattle off what you do for work, in the hope that people will take it on board and remember you when they need your particular service or product.

I am talking about EVERYTHING you “say” in all forms to your clients. Starting with your physical presence, your product/service knowledge, all the way through to your memory. So if you want a holistic approach to your “being-your-business’s-best-marketing-tool” plan here’s my tips!

1. Look the part.

First impressions stick, so your appearance has a lot to do with the opinion your current and potential clients will form of you. It may seem like a simple element to remember, but personal grooming, business etiquette, positive energy and a smile will go a LONG way in reflecting the image of your business. Imagine signing up to a gym with an unfit/overweight trainer, or buying cosmetics from a sales rep who doesn’t use any herself!

2. Know your stuff.

KNOW your product or service, even if you have to practice what you preach, meaning, if you get nervous when someone asks “so what do you do?” have an answer prepared, think of those key words you need to mention within the first few sentences you speak…remember you want to come off memorably…but for all the RIGHT reasons!

If you are passionate about what you do and are confident in your own abilities, this will be reflected in your work.

3. Be a head of your game.

Don’t be afraid to offer your services. Ask “why do you ask, are you in need of a super-designer?” (followed by a SMILE). But seriously, give out business cards, don’t be afraid to talk about yourself and your achievements and experience, and make your “pitch” person-specific!

4. Follow through.

A business basic, but SO often forgotten! Follow up and follow through. Make phone calls. Follow leads. AND fulfill everything that you said you would. Give your clients or customers an overall experience, rather then just providing your service or product….this way, they’ll keep coming back!

5. Lock it in the memory bank.

With all the technology available to us these days, it’s easier then EVER to remember important, significant and individual things about a client… remembering birthdays, kids and significant others names, important business events and special occasions are a simple way to keep a client happy, feeling important and special….and I’m not talking about befriending every client you have, but these small gestures, make a BIG impact!

So remember, every person is a potential client! Whether you’re in the lift, ordering your morning coffee, chatting to an old friend…you are showcasing your business and opening it to a world of opportunity.

Even when you have a limited budget for traditional marketing routes, (or even if you spend big on advertising your business, for that matter!) remember to focus on these seemingly obvious, often forgotten areas that can speak thousands about you and your business. Work on you, so you work on being your business’s best marketing tool!