Transcript of "15 terrible excuses for not starting your own business"
15 Terrible Excuses For Not
Starting Your Own Business
It's very possible one of your excuses is that you don't
have enough time… so let's get right to some of the
worst reasons not to be an entrepreneur.--Jeff Haden
"I'm Too Scared"
Join the club. Every entrepreneur
is scared, so you have a choice:
Let your fears hold you back – or
use those same fears as fuel to
do whatever it takes to succeed.
Complacency is the enemy of
achievement. Fortunately, the
right kind of fear – the fear of not
achieving your dreams – can
drive complacency away.
"I Don't Have the Right Connections"
Between company websites and
LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and all
the other social media platforms you
can reach almost anyone besides the
Pope and maybe Bono. In fact some
people are surprisingly accessible
(maybe that's one of the secrets of
their success?). Of course they may
not respond. If they don't that's
probably your fault. Never forget
that the more influential the person
the more they're besieged with
requests. Have a good reason to
connect, give before you expect to
receive, and you might be surprised
by who responds.
"I'm Too Late"
Yeah, Jobs beat you to the
graphical interface and mouse,
but Xerox beat him. Zuckerberg
wasn't first in social media. The
list goes on. Innovation is never
one-and-done; some of the
most successful companies are
based on refining earlier ideas
and innovations. You're only too
late if you're not willing to be
better, faster, stronger, or
cheaper than whoever got there
"I Can't Get Anyone to Listen"
People will listen to anything that
is entertaining, interesting,
heartfelt, amusing, shocking,
informative, titillating, stupid,
satirical, controversial, sad, silly,
sexy...If you can't get anyone to
listen, the problem isn't them.
The problem is you. What you
want to say is irrelevant; change
your message so it means
something to the people you
want to reach.
Then they'll listen.
"I Don't Have the Money"
Being an entrepreneur is the art
and science of accomplishing
more with less -- less money, less
people, less time, less everything.
You will never, ever have
"enough" cash or capital or
funding. If you don't have enough
capital to launch your business
the way you plan, then change
your plan. You can't always
control what you have, but you
can control what you choose to
do with what you have.
"I Don't Have the Time"
Everyone has the same amount of time.
The only difference is what you're willing
to do with your time. If you were trapped
underground and only had 24 hours
worth of oxygen you wouldn't check your
Twitter feed or chat with friends or spend
a little "me time" in front of the TV. You'd
dig and dig and dig. Apply the same level
of importance and urgency to what you
want to accomplish and your schedule
will instantly clear, because finding time
is always a matter of how badly you want
"I Don't Have the Skills"
No problem. Go get them. Go to
school. Read a book. Read ten books.
Talk to friends. Get a part-time job at
a small business. Get a part-time job
in a completely different industry.
Find someone who has done what
you want to do and volunteer to work
for free in return for the opportunity
to learn. Does that seem too hard?
Like too big of a price to pay? Or
simply not fair? Then accept you will
never have the skills and stop
complaining. Skills and knowledge are
earned, not given.
"I Don't Have a Great Idea"
Dreaming up something new is really,
really hard. Reacting to something
that already exists is really, really
easy. Walk around and start
complaining (to yourself). You'll see
tons of problems that require
solutions. Those solutions are ideas.
Or walk around your business and
start complaining. There are tons of
problems you can address. "New" is
hard to imagine. "Better" is much
easier. Most companies are built on
"better," not "new."
"I Can't Take the Risk"
Any risk you take today is a risk you can
recover from. In time you can overcome
almost any setback, stumble, or failure,
and emerge stronger and smarter and
better equipped to succeed the next
time. If you never try all you will be is
regretful: When you're old and grey and
"done" you'll have to look back on your
life and think, "I wonder what might have
happened if I had only..." That's one risk
you should never take.
"I'm Better at Planning Than
No, you're not. You're just too lazy to do the grunt work. Or
you think you've already paid your dues. Or you think you're
above it. Or… pick your excuse. Every successful
entrepreneur rolls up his or her sleeves and outworks
everyone else around. (That's one of the reasons they're so
successful.) You don't need some undefined innate quality to
be good at execution; all you need is discipline.
"I Can't Launch Until It's Perfect"
Sure you can. You just don't want to. Do
this instead. Do your best. Then step back.
If a little more work will result in a
markedly better outcome, go for it. If a
little more work will not make a difference
anyone but you will notice, let it go. Then
you make improvements based on the
feedback you get from the only people
whose opinions really matter: your
"I'm Not Comfortable Doing It That
I was raised to be humble and self-effacing, so I hate to say I'm
good at anything. But sometimes I have no choice; taking
advantage of certain opportunities requires confidently describing
my skills, experience, and accomplishments. If you're not
comfortable doing something because it violates your principles
or ethics, by all means don't. But if you're not comfortable doing
something simply because it will take you out of your comfort
zone, you're just rationalizing.
And you'll never be more than you already are.
"No One Gets It"
Oh, they get it. They get that it’s no good. Truly great ideas
can be described in a few words. Truly great products can
be described in a few words. When no one seems to get it,
the only person not getting it is you. Let go of your pride
and agenda and "unique point of view" and figure out
where you've gone wrong.
"It's Too Hard"
Long journeys are hard. Individual steps are easy. You can't
accomplish any difficult goal overnight, but you can accomplish
one step, however small, towards that goal. Think about the end of
a journey and all that will be required along the way and you'll
never start. Instead, just do one thing that will help get you there.
Then build on it. That you can do.
"I'll Be Too Embarrassed If I Fail"
Failing in public can be embarrassing. Some people will talk about
you. But those are the same people who would never dare try
something themselves. So don't worry about them. A much larger
group of people will respect you for taking a shot. They'll recognize
a kindred spirit. They'll encourage. They'll pick you up. They'll
know what it's like to try and fail and try again. Why? They're
people living their lives on their terms. They’re entrepreneurs.
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