Posts Tagged ‘entrepreneur’
Startup businesses recognise that neither a good nor an exceptional product or new idea alone is enough to succeed.
So, then, what are the two factors that every successful startup needs? And does your startup have them? Find out…
The IMF has provided entrepreneurs with a wonderful example of how to get it wrong.
But what can we – the successful entrepreneurs – learn from the IMFs failures?
The new year is with us – and so this is a great time to ask – what have you pruned or cut in 2011?
Hmm… yes, this might seem strange to ask about cutting at the beginning of a new year – but shouldn’t we be looking to expand and grow, you might ask?
Well yes, but, before you can grow, you have to cut out the deadwood or the slow growth businesses, products and services in order to focus on new opportunities or expanding those things that really are working.
What kind of business will be successful coming out of this recession?
And, how do we build it?
That is the big question for every entrepreneur who is either starting up now – or already on the journey.
So, what will happen… and what do we do about it?
Oops! Did I mean FIRED?
As Lord Sugar’s new edition of the Apprentice gets under way this week, we have to ask ourselves why do all these thrusting young entrepreneurs want a job?
Research shows that freelancers can solve many of the challenges faced by businesses, agencies or departments that are looking to innovate and grow.
Instead of just being a way to save costs, freelancers are discovering that they bring original ideas and solutions to their clients.
But does it work? Can freelancers help avoid failure and stimulate innovation?
Hurrah! There has been a shift in business thinking!
Stock investors have rediscovered Warren Buffett’s investment principle of ‘never lose money’ and entrepreneurs are now focused on how to avoid small business failure, rather than searching for growth at all costs.
We need to learn how to avoid small business failure and so that your business has time and space to innovate.
How do we grow our businesses in 2010?
We have less cash than before, and borrowing is either impossible or way too expensive.
We’ve made cuts already to our business and so have a smaller team and less staff than before.
We know government cuts to public spending are coming and will impact on at least some of our customers if not our businesses directly.
So what do we do?
Guys – it is time to ditch the old ‘build a business and sell it for zillions’ goal!
Just as easy credit has passed into history so too have the dreams of becoming instant dot.com millionaires as a result of a few lucky breaks and some unknown buyer waving cheque books.
As most successful entrepreneurs know, it doesn’t really happen like that – unless you are incredibly lucky.
But, it is a common battle cry from entrepreneurs that they want to sell their business for £5m in 3 years time – or some similar sort of goal.
Successful entrepreneurs are constantly asking three key questions –
- ‘what isn’t working’
- ‘why isn’t it working’ and
- ‘can I do anything about it’?
These three questions are the most important questions in the entrepreneurs vocabluary and a lifetime can be spent on developing the skills and abilities to answer those as successfully as possible.
On the face of it, the UK Chancellor’s budget speech on Wednesday offered a reasonable boost to small businesses and entrepreneurs.
The budget, the last before the general election, has therefore been largely welcomed by the business community although some claim it still does not go far enough in its support for entrepreneurial and fast-growing businesses.
Luke Johnson, a successful entrepreneur, wrote in the FT last week that it is important to fire your existing management team if you want your business to discover reinvention. He says that gradual revolution is not enough and that when systems are broken small steps won’t work.
Whole swathes of businesses no longer work the way they used to. Book publishing and local newspapers are at the top of the list, but other business such as estate agencies, state education, financial services are all looking for new ways to do things.
We are not looking at a gradual revolution here – we are looking at business models that no longer work.
Tom Farmer, the entrepreneur who made his money with Quick Fit, a tyres and exhausts retailer and fitter, says that the bigger you are – the dumber you are.
In Mr Farmer’s view ‘the reason governments are dumb is because they are so big’.
So size is a real problem for both businesses and institutions.
Therefore, Tom Farmer is an advocate of the low employee business, which grows by outsourcing all the other services.
Do great entrepreneurs never give up?
Is a top entrepreneur like a dog with a bone, and just won’t let go?
True or false?
Well, true but only to a point. A smart entrepreneur will “try, try and try again – and then give up. No point in being a damn fool about it”. (WC Fields).
Is this the best single business idea that you will ever come across? We reckon it is pretty much up there with the best.
One working prototype and one paying, happy customer ==> testimonial + request for second product from second customer. The two happy customers and testimonials then create a third customer and so forth.
What makes an entrepreneur different from a small business man or woman? Well, the best definition of what entrepreneurs do is provided by Peter Drucker. He said
Entrepreneurs innovate. Innovation is the specific instrument of entrepreneurship. It is the act that endows resources with a new capacity to create wealth.
Okay, so what does that mean?
Okay, we’ve started the ball rolling on this website with the controversial claim that entrepreneurs should only hire freelancers…
…that you have to hire the best. … and hiring the best means you have to offer the full time employment – the best package – a full time employment contract and for CEO’s golden handshakes to welcome them and golden parachutes should they fail, share options if they don’t etc.
Here is a quote I heard yesterday Enterpreneurs are particularly bad at recruiting Now, that is a strong statement, but it comes from an industry veteran who has years and years of helping businesses recruit the right person for the job, so it is an opinion that carries some weight. So, why is this so? [...]
Okay – here is a radical business strategy for entrepreneurs that some of you won’t like – and that is that you should not employ anyone. Please, if you disagree, please don’t switch off but take a moment to think about the argument… you can always respond below…
Work with people on a freelance and contractual basis – yes, absolutely, you simply must. You can even have an office or a factory if you must, but never sign a standard UK or European employment contract.
“Serial entrepreneurship is not a matter of success and failure but rather boredom” Great quote – but is it true or false? Recommend on Facebook Share on google plus Share on Linkedin Tweet about it Subscribe to the comments on this post Neil LewisLeader. Speaker. Trainer. Helping snr execs and entrepreneurs achieve their business and [...]
Alan Sugar, a UK entrepreneur with more than his fair share of grey hair, stoked controversy by stating that 85% of UK businesses that failed to receive bank finance had nothing to complain about. Amid the controversy of whether he actually said this or not, we can still ask ourselves whether he has a point. Essentially, [...]
Arsene Wenger, the Arsenal coach and ‘Warren Buffett of football’ was quoted this August as saying: “The common denominator of successful teams is that the players are intelligent. That does not always mean educated. They can analyse a problem and find a solution. “The common denominator of a top-level person is that they can objectively assess [...]
If a picture is worth a thousand words – how much is a story worth? Especially a story that paints pictures in the mind? I am using parables – or stories – to express the ideas about business which will form the basis for this blog and the subsequent book Rags to Wreckages … to [...]
Business models are changing – and what people want from work is changing too. The new way to work, for nearly all white collar work, is freelance. In recent years, freelancers have established their own trade body – the Professional Contractors Group. And now they are celebrating National Freelancers Day on 23rd November 2009. This [...]
Real Life Business Strategy and Parables for Entrepreneurs: Why Many Great Sounding Businesses Ideas Don’t Make Money – and – The Rock that Wouldn’t Budge Why Brittle Businesses Break – and – How Glass was Cursed with Brittleness Goldilocks and the three Shareholders They Know What Needs to Be Done But They Don’t Do it – [...]