Employee or Entrepreneur: Predicting Your Success as a Business Owner

Do you dream of being your own boss? Fantasize about making heaps of money and setting your own hours? If so, you’re not alone. As many as 70 …

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Do you dream of being your own boss? Fantasize about making heaps of money and setting your own hours? If so, you’re not alone. As many as 70 percent of the individuals who seek help from a business broker or franchise consultant have the same dream, but many will never achieve it because of one thing: fear.

Fear, by definition, is attributed to a lack of knowledge. So—put simply—while investigating entrepreneurship, one must become informed about the challenges and good, old-fashioned hard work that comes with making that leap.

This could mean researching a specific industry or type of business to buy; learning how to craft a business plan; pursuing an educational certificate, or even joining and participating in a club designed for aspiring entrepreneurs. Some of the best business leaders out there are self-taught, so as long as you’re willing to put some time and effort into learning about the process, your possibilities for business ownership success are endless.

But first, there are a few key questions you must ask yourself if you decide to pursue entrepreneurship:

1. Is your environment influencing you positively or negatively?

Sometimes when you dream big, there are people in your life waiting in the wings to tell you that “you can’t do that,” or that your idea “will never work.”

Now, you may not be able to control what people in your life say or feel, but you can control how you react to their negativity. You can choose to ignore their comments, which have the power to erode your self-esteem, and continue on with your pursuit. Their energy will only become valid if you allow for it to influence you.

2. Are you a true entrepreneur at heart?

At the end of the day, do you think, live and breathe like a business owner?

If you can go without a paycheck for 6 – 24 months; are capable of letting a vision take priority in front of your short-term needs; perform well under pressure; have the ability to act as a solid mentor; are good at working independently and are responsible at all times, you may just fit the bill!

3. Do you possess the core characteristics of an entrepreneur?

Detail Oriented. The old saying “the devil is in the details” rings true for aspiring entrepreneurs—and you’ll need to make sure you have the focus to take care of the little things while you drive your big-picture strategy.

Competitive. Every entrepreneur must love to win. It’s almost more important to some than the journey itself.

Excellent at Communicating. The ability to share one’s vision and create excitement about the venture is crucial. If you’re the only person on board for your journey, it’s bound to be a short one. You must be able to communicate your ideas clearly and passionately so others will take notice.

Flexible. Entrepreneurship means changing hats often and embracing that change. If you can’t multitask, business ownership is probably not for you.

David Nilssen is the CEO & Co-Founder of Guidant Financial. Read more tips about becoming a successful entrepreneur in his book, Making the Jump into Small Business Ownership.

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