8 lessons that can prepare any founder wannabe for what’s ahead

Source | : By Chirag Prajapati

Being a successful entrepreneur requires diligence and perseverance. And unfortunately, there is no business or startup fairy who mystically presents success to any entrepreneur.

For me, turning to entrepreneurship isn’t about making a living from rags to riches, although my journey was tough indeed. Being an entrepreneur isn’t only a fantasy or a goal. Rather, it is a way of life, a mindset, and a passion.

But looking back from where I stand today, I realize my younger self could have learned the following things early on.

Put your resources into customer acquisition over product

This advice may sound outlandish, especially if your team is focusing on building the right product and are trusting that people will come to get it. But it doesn’t happen that way. Instead, measure the clamor or the need out there first.

Moreover, increase your chances of surviving the competition by making a louder buzz about your product. You can always improve your product if there’s cash in the bank. But do your customer acquisition design first then manufacture your product.

It’s OK to let go of terrible customers

Run with your gut here. When a customer tries to undermine your value, let go. However, a disadvantage of this is it might cost you more over the long haul than your customers are willing to pay. So, set some limits and regard your qualities. Also, figure out how you can value your best customers.

No one but you can figure out your value

Deciding how much your work is worth is one of the toughest parts of starting a business. There will be times when you will feel terribly underpaid. You will ask yourself whether you’re charging too high or too low.

The best advice I could give is to be strategic and stay reliable. This doesn’t mean that your rates should stay the same forever. Increase your value as you gain more experience in your industry. In any case, building up a technique for how you will value your undertakings right off the bat will spare you from second-guessing and losing customers or even your income later on.

Be friends with your competitors

It’s highly possible to find a lot of businesses that do exactly what you do. But instead of stalking them, checking their records and learning about their customer base, consider getting acquainted with them.

Networking with companies I once regarded as rivals eventually gave me some of the powerful connections I now have. It’s amazing how acknowledging each other can bring learning for both you and your competition, open an opportunity for collaboration, and help both parties flourish.

Try not to decide too quickly

Think for at least an hour before reacting to anything huge. Don’t do things impulsively. For example, take some time before signing contracts or entering partnerships. Carefully think each deal over. Remember that things can wait and that you can achieve superior results by making decisions with a clear mind.

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