Business trends indicate the number of new businesses is on the decline. Some would blame the decline on the economy and lack of funding from financial institutions. While others, will argue that it is due to the over-imposing commercialism of corporate America which leaves no room for smaller businesses. Regardless of the view you subscribe to. There is one undisputed fact: There is a decline in Small Business Loans. The Small Business Administration has reported a noticeably decrease this year in the small loans ranging from $100,000 and under, that are generally granted to smaller businesses.
Given that financial institutions are not throwing money at venturers. Now, more than ever entrepreneurs must give great forethought prior to launching themselves onto the entrepreneurship track. They must be strategic and give consideration to the 3 principles outlined below to fully actualize their dreams.
1. Commit to one Business Idea
The first step is to commit to one idea. Typically, a person who recognizes a calling to be an entrepreneur is confronted with many business ideas. Some of the ideas are related and others are as different as night and day. It is crucial that you narrow your options down to one idea because running with multiple ideas will exhaust all your resources and energy with less promise of a return on your investment. Think of a horse racing scenario, you have an option to bet a small sum of money on individual horses. Let’s say, you bet $1 on five different horses. If one of the horses win, you get an additional $1. Or you may place $5 on the winning horse for $25 win. When you ultimately consider the potential reward to win big on one idea, it’s a no brainer that you should focus on the latter scenario.
The next consideration is the decision process of which idea is a winning one. The racing scenario sounds good until you consider the possibility of having picked the wrong horse. Not all business ideas are created equal. Some ideas are negligible at best. To have a successful business you need One Great Idea. How do you know the idea is truly a great one? There are three characteristics that great ideas have: originality, feasibility, and utility to a community. Keeping these characteristics in mind, you are well on your way to committing a great idea.
2. Have a vision
Having a great idea is a wonderful start. But that is enough. From your idea, you must build a concept. A concept goes a step beyond one simple notion, it elaborates on a higher developmental level. It carries with it a theme and an overall objective. There must be a road map. A person will be successful in anything if he is able to envision his success. You can only visualize something when there is a clear unobstructed path. To find that path, you need to grab a notepad and think of how you implement this idea from point A to Z.
To build a concept around your idea, it requires a lot of introspect into the potential utility of your business to your community or society. Think of branding your idea with an overall theme. Branding elevates your idea from the realm of thoughts and brings it closer to reality. If you think of most successful businesses, they have a clear thematic approach to their business. That is exactly what it takes to succeed. This might take more time than narrowing down your ideas. But it is absolutely necessary to have a specific and clear vision of your idea.
3. Be dedicated
With success comes sacrifice. After the honeymoon phase is over with your being so in love with your idea, comes the real test: your dedication to implementing the idea. Having a great idea means nothing if you don’t aggressively pursue it. Your pursuit must be exclusive of all other objectives. The majority of people still have to hold a traditional job while pursuing their business idea. This might require allocating specific times throughout the day to work on the business idea. Whether you can forgo a lunch break or work on your idea over the weekend is up to you. Developing your business concept is all about your devotion to stage.
Depending on the business idea the next steps may vary slightly. Ultimately your dedication to implementing your idea will include some if not all of the following: research, drafting a business plan, investigating potential financial resources, marketing considerations, setting benchmarks for launching the business and enlisting the help of necessary professionals such as accountants, consultants, lawyers.