Most people in life are afraid to follow their passion. A lot of us are currently trapped in the jobs we don’t love or have passion for, working effortlessly to build the dreams and vision of others. In today’s corporate world, there are two categories of employees, those who work in a relatively friendly working environment where the boss motivates them to be at their best and colleagues who support each other to achieve the organizations goals and objectives. Lucky you would say. The second category are those who find themselves in hostile environment where the fear of losing their jobs engulf them daily, the boss has inferiority complex and makes life difficult while colleagues stab each other at the back to get ahead.
Transitioning from the corporate world to startup may be sometimes scary for fear of failure, fear of losing money, fear of not knowing where to start but few years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do if you continue to give in to fear and not do what you enjoy doing.
“To conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom”
Here are a few tips that will guide you through the process.
1. Managing your finances
One of the most common reasons why startups fail is running out of money. No matter how brilliant your idea might be, if you don’t have a good grip of managing your cash flow, you are going to put your business in a very difficult situation. Be sure to know where every single Naira is coming from and where it goes.
Another cost you need to consider is your own personal financial situation. There will be a need to cut back all unnecessary spending to its minimum.
2. Remain optimistic but prepare for the worst
You never know what can happen when starting a business, so it is best to prepare yourself for the worst case scenario. Don’t quit your job and eliminate you main source of income until your business can replace that income. Sometimes, the best way to mitigate fear is by walking through each worst case scenario, and realizing that the failure isn’t so bad. Put strategic plans in place that has tangible outcomes.
3. Acquire additional skills
The two most important skills to acquire at this point are leadership and business skills. Managing your finances, operations and all that come with being the CEO of your organization require expertise. One way of achieving this is by reading books from successful entrepreneurs, take online courses and find yourself a mentor who will guide you through the difficult times.
4. Work at increasing your customer base
The sustainability of the business depends largely on customer acquisition. Once you have identified your target market, identify the different acquisition channels and work on optimization to lower costs. start your experimentation of the channels from those with most promising opportunities. Once you successfully scale those, you’ll have financial capability to explore other channels.
5. Associate with like minds
Build a network of people who can potentially become clients or business associates. Take advantage of seminars, meetings and conferences to establish relationship with people of various professional backgrounds. Be visible on social networks to cash in on updated information useful for the growth of your business.
6. Be sure to pay yourself
You don’ want to dedicate all your time and energy at building your business, paying your staff salaries while neglecting your own needs. It doesn’t have to be something big at the beginning but you deserve to live comfortably. By paying yourself, you will eliminate the pressure of pulling funds from the business to solve personal financial needs.