Tag Archives: strategy

Am I crazy to be an entrepreneur?

Image from www.all4humor.comI woke up this morning and my first thought was that “I am crazy”! Stark, raving, mad, lunatic crazy. It was all triggered by an argument that I had with my business partner yesterday, which was by no means his fault.

Crazy can be defined as doing the same thing over and over, but expecting a different result. Crazy is when you have the most amazing product to sell, but your customer has no money. Crazy is when you create a sales forecast in Excel with hockey-stick escalating revenues, yet in your gut you know that this might not be too realistic. Crazy is when your business model is simply not working, but you refuse to see the light. Crazy is when we fool ourselves, both in business and in life.

But isn’t it necessary for entrepreneurs to be visionary? Don’t we have to own a dream? Don’t we have to see solutions where no one else dares to look or believe? Isn’t it necessary to “keep the faith” in spite of resistance? What if Thomas Edison had quit after over 1000 failed experiments to invent the light bulb? Isn’t that what makes some entrepreneurs great while others are only mediocre? Don’t entrepreneurs need to be a bit crazy?

In the book Awakening the Entrepreneur Within, by Michael Gerber, he talks about 4 different entrepreneur personality types. There is the DREAMER – the entrepreneur with the ability to see holes in the market and to discover innovative new ways of solving problems. There is the THINKER – the one who takes the dream and figures out the mechanics and the strategy necessary to make it work. There is the STORYTELLER – the one who figures out how to tell the world about this amazing dream, and then there is the LEADER – the one who buys the dream, understands the strategy, embraces the story, but takes LEADERSHIP.

My wife’s favorite mantra is “Balance, balance and even more balance”.

Balance is what entrepreneurs need. To succeed you must have all the 4 personality traits, not just one. You cannot be just a dreamer. You must also balance this by being a good thinker, storyteller and leader as well.

Nobody ever said that being an entrepreneur would be easy. Don’t give up your dream, but seek the balance that will make it all work.  I promise that I will.

_____
Want to turn-around your business and achieve results in record time? Contact me to discuss Executive Coaching, Group Facilitation and Management for Hire services for technology companies. You can learn more at www.ricksalmon.comwww.xelerator.com and at www.e-unlimited.com.

Rick Salmon is an energetic entrepreneur who lives in Norway and believes that European startup companies can succeed and grow quickly if only they get the proper help and assistance. Subscribe to this newsletter/blog to receive frequent updates and tips. Contact me if you want to find out how we can help accelerate your business.

Image from www.all4humor.com

Personal Ad: Great Technology Seeks Sexy Problem to Solve

You would not believe how many times I have met brilliant entrepreneurs with amazing, cutting-edge technologies who are clueless about their markets and about who will actually be willing to pay money for their inventions. I talked with a guy who works at a local patent office recently. He said that they get 10 such calls every week of the year.

Here is a 1-Minute Reality Checklist for technology entrepreneurs:

  1. Does your business idea soothe someone’s pain, discomfort, frustration, or dissatisfaction?
  2. Are there lots of those people out there?
  3. Do these people (or companies, or governments) have money to pay for it?
  4. Will they be able to decide quickly to buy your product or service?
  5. Does your idea exploit something about you that is outstanding or unique?

If the answer to any of these questions is “NO”, then you need to do some soul-searching work on your business plan.

The best companies are not built on new technology. They are built on solving real-life problems. Pushing new technology is like pushing on a rope. It just doesn’t work. Start with a clearly defined problem. Start with a clearly defined group of people who all experience this problem. Let these people and their common problem pull your technology into the market. This strategy is much easier and long-term. If another technology comes along and eclipses yours, then just adopt it and continue solving the problem for your customers.

If you start with the technology first, then expect a long and difficult climb up the mountain of success. If you start with the problem first, then it will be like bobsledding.  You can choose.

This list was borrowed from Daniel Isenberg, who is a professor of entrepreneurship and Harvard PhD. Here is the link.

Want to turn-around your business and achieve results in record time? Contact me to discuss Executive Coaching, Group Facilitation and Management for Hire services for technology companies. You can learn more at www.ricksalmon.comwww.xelerator.com and at www.e-unlimited.com.

Rick Salmon is an energetic entrepreneur who lives in Norway and believes that European startup companies can succeed and grow quickly if only they get the proper help and assistance. Subscribe to this newsletter/blog to receive frequent updates and tips.