The following is a contribution from Stefan Taylor, who is a writer and online entrepreneur with ADHD. Stefan blogs at ADHD Boss, which is a website that helps people live a healthier and more productive life with ADHD and anxiety.
South Africa and America share some surprisingly similar characteristics.
Both countries have brutally competitive entrepreneurship scenes, booming tech economies, and an abundance of opportunities available to anyone willing to seize them.
And, this is exactly why I love the internet so much. Whether you live in South Africa, America, or virtually anywhere else in the world – the internet is the “great equalizer” of entrepreneurship.
The internet doesn’t care about:
- How much money you have to start your business
- Who you know
- What you look like
The internet doesn’t even care if you have any original ideas of your own.
All that you truly need to launch a web business is some persistence, and a willingness to execute.
So, if you’re hungry for a better future, then you’ll want to get familiar with these 5 must-know entrepreneurship tips as you build your business…
1. People really only care about the value that you give them
I’m always hesitant to share this tip, because it sounds so cut-throat and maybe even superficial.
But, it’s the truth.
People really only care about the value that you give them.
In other words, to become a successful entrepreneur, you have to prioritize the needs of other people (i.e. your target market), in order to eventually satisfy your own needs at a much later date.
You could also call this “delaying gratification” if you like. Entrepreneurship is mostly about setting aside your own wants and needs, and focusing on the needs of other people, so that you can eventually have the opportunity to get what you want (success, wealth, fame, whatever).
Sounds like a paradox, right?
It’s pretty crazy how success in business works.
But, I find that if you can just focus on giving people value time and time again, then you don’t have to worry about much else.
Give, and you shall eventually receive.
2. You have to be OK with high levels of uncertainty
When you work for someone else, you feel a sense of security, as if you’re always going to be taken care of.
For example, it’s extremely comforting to have someone available to give you “instructions” every day at your job (like a manager or boss). It’s also comforting to have a nice steady paycheck, a retirement plan, and a stable work-life balance.
But, as an entrepreneur, all of these comforts temporarily go out the window.
When you run your own operation, you have to be OK with living under high levels of uncertainty for at least a little while.
Eventually, you will begin to see the “light at the end of the tunnel,” and you will start to sleep better at night knowing that your life is becoming more stable.
But, it could take you quite a few years to reach a point of stability in your entrepreneurial pursuits.
So, try your best to embrace the uncertainty as much as you can, because it will be difficult to deal with at first. But, things will eventually get much better for you.
3. Have a mission that you care about
It’s true that there are entrepreneurs who manage to grow successful businesses without having a mission in life.
But, if you want to drastically improve your odds of success, it’s going to be crucial for you to create a mission that you live by.
I’m not talking about creating a “mission statement” for your business.
I’m referring to creating an actual mission for your life, staying conscious of your mission, and working hard towards fulfilling your mission every single day.
Your mission can be as simple as writing books that people enjoy reading, selling cool t-shirts, hosting amazing parties or events, or virtually anything else that you come up with. You can do close to anything that you want in life. But, I find that physically writing your mission on paper 5 times per day helps a lot with making sure that you’re actually focused on your mission every day.
Because, when you’re fully aware of your life’s mission, you’ll almost always know when you’re headed in the right (or wrong) direction.
Pro tip: Want to know the easiest way to determine if you have the right mission for your life? Just be honest with yourself, and think about whether you look forward to Monday mornings or not. If you enjoy Monday mornings, then you’re probably on the right path in life. If you hate Monday mornings, then you probably need to continue searching for the ideal mission for your life.
4. Good entrepreneurship is rarely sexy
Just run a quick search for #entrepreneur on Instagram or Facebook, and you’ll discover LOADS of people who make entrepreneurship appear much sexier than it’s supposed to be.
You’ll probably find pictures of important-looking people having nice dinners, hanging out on boats, and driving nice cars.
The problem with this is that it’s largely an illusion.
What you don’t see on Instagram are the pictures of how entrepreneurship is usually executed:
- Many entrepreneurs have to work dead-end jobs in order to generate cash flow, while bootstrapping their own business on the side
- Many entrepreneurs struggle to find balance in their social life and relationships
- Many entrepreneurs are barely scraping by, until their business hits a “breakthrough” and suddenly takes off
To put it simply, good entrepreneurship is rarely sexy, and you hardly ever see the unsexy “behind the scenes” execution that takes place in most business ventures.
This is actually a good thing, because it means that you don’t have to worry about what other people are doing. You can stay focused on building systems and growing your business, while other people stay content with merely projecting the illusion of success.
5. The sky is the limit with entrepreneurship
One of the reasons why I’m so willing to deal with the pain of entrepreneurship is because of the freedom that it inevitably rewards you with.
If you’re an entrepreneur like Tiisetso or myself, the sky truly is the limit for you.
Entrepreneurship can help you connect with amazing people, generate wealth, move to a beautiful city, or live out the vision that you’ve created for your life.
But most importantly, entrepreneurship will shape you into a more resilient, generous, and humble human being. Because, you ultimately have to become a giver in order to cut through all of the selfishness that perpetuates the business world. This is how you will stand out from the rest of the pack.
Once you commit to giving your audience an abundance of value time and time again – you will eventually be rewarded with everything that you could ever ask for.
You just have to give all to get all. Always remember this.
Overall, I hope this article encourages you to pursue entrepreneurship for the right reasons.
If you want to help other people while also helping yourself in the process, then entrepreneurship could be the perfect complement to your lifestyle.
Just try your best to internalize the 5 entrepreneurship tips listed in this article, and you’ll be well on your way to living out your destiny.
As a reminder, here’s a quick summary of the 5 must-know entrepreneurship tips for you to keep in mind:
- People really only care about the value that you give them
- You have to be OK with high levels of uncertainty
- Have a mission that you care about
- Good entrepreneurship is rarely sexy
- The sky is the limit with entrepreneurship
I wish you the best of luck on your entrepreneurial journey. And, please try your best to enjoy the process of entrepreneurship. The rewards are almost always worth it in the end.
P.S. Don’t be afraid to seek help if needed. You can always contact Tiisetso for his consulting services, and eliminate some of the pain that typically comes with entrepreneurship.