I need to be an entrepreneur. Now what?
I cross paths with a lot of people, especially older job seekers, who say “I need to start my own business, but I don’t know what it will be”. Wanting to be an entrepreneur and independent is the first step along a path of millions of steps, each one carrying the virus of failure. If you don’t choose a target really well in this first step, you probably will catch the failure flu. So, how do you choose?
I think the basic foundation of any successful business person is a really strong self-assessment. That’s the first step in the ACE Methodology. I’ve found that successful entrepreneurs fully understand their strengths, weaknesses, passions, experience and values then put them to work in a focused direction. Honest self-assessment is really hard (you think it would be easy, but it isn’t) because you can be too close to yourself. Friends and family (even strangers) often have a better perspective on what you’re good at and passionate about.
“Passions” will help you get up in the morning to accomplish something. “Strengths” will help you do it well. “Experience” will help you avoid a long education and rookie mistakes. “Values” will help you persevere (or not) when things get tough or boring. Strong values for accomplishment will help you glue everything else together. We discuss this a lot in Startup Assembly Manual.
The “keep trying until I succeed” is a pointless war cry without a clear goal and path and plan.