• Characteristics of a Successful Entrepreneur• Step-by-Step Approach – Decide if you really want to be in business – Decide what business and where – Decide whether to start full-time or moonlight• Selection Strategy• Things to Watch Out For• Required Activities – Comparative Evaluation – How to Evaluate a Specific Business you have in Mind – "For" and "Against" List – Get Completely Qualified• Decision Time
Characteristics of a SuccessfulEntrepreneur.• Guts:o you must have an entrepreneurial instinct.o You must have an overwhelming desire to have your own business.o You must have the guts and dedication to be completely devoted to your goal. "Be able to sustain a financial commitment to whatever business you start."
• Brains:o Plan to start before you startit – Common sense combinedwith appropriate experience isthe necessary brainpower.
• Capital:o You will need seed money of your own plus sufficient cash to maintain a positive cash flow for at least One year. (In some cases you dont need starting capital to hire other people because you might start by doing everything yourself)
Step-by-Step ApproachDecide if you really want to be in business:You will be putting some (not all, hopefully) of your net worth at risk. You willrun the risk of becoming eccentric, meaning creating a life that is out of balance,with working hours taking away from other pleasurable activities. There maybe levels of stress you have not experienced as an employee/employer.Decide what business and where:Once you have decided you have the characteristics of a successfulentrepreneur and that you definitely want to be in business, then you mustdecide which business is best for you and where to locate that business.Selection strategy is covered later on in this Session.
Selection StrategySelecting the wrongbusiness is the mostfrequent mistakethat start-upentrepreneurs make.Here is a checklist tohelp you select asuccessful one:
Things to Watch Out For:• Impatience• Do not let overconfidence short- circuit you from analyzing your selection of businesses carefully. You must not fear of hearing the negative aspects; it is much better to be aware of them and face them early on.• Be realistic. Do not become lured by high rewards. They will come if you choose the right business and if you understand every aspect of the business before you open its doors. "To get ahead in this business you do everything to get the job done."
Required ActivitiesThe most common mistake and the most costly one is not picking the rightbusiness to begin with. This is the time for soul searching.IF YOU HAVE NOT DECIDED ON A BUSINESS, DO THIS:•On the top of a blank sheet of paper, write an activity you like to do (makethis the heading). Do a separate page for each activity or interest you have.•On those same sheets list as many businesses you can think of that arerelated to that activity.•On the same sheets list all the products or services you can think of thatare related to that activity. Use your imagination and think of everypossible product or service you could do.•Make a list of businesses that do better in bad times (one may beappropriate for you). Some examples might be pawnshops, auto repairsand fabric stores.