For every business owner struggling to make it in the market or thrive in their niche, there are many individuals who never make it past writing a business plan. The difference between those who drive profits and those who don’t dare is fear.
Fear is the single most common and effective emotion that challenges budding entrepreneurs. Here’s a look at six key concerns that stops wantrepreneurs in their tracks long before they’ve even begun.
1. I won’t attract any customers.
Offering your product or service to the world is terrifying, because you essentially have no guarantee potential customers will see its value. If you approach your business idea with genuine passion, execution and consistently deliver your brand promise, success will likely find you. Start customer validation early and strive to position yourself as an expert in your field.
2. I’ll disappoint my family.
Many would-be entrepreneurs are afraid that startup failure will cause embarrassment for themselves and their entire family. The truth is that starting a business, while challenging, is an excellent opportunity for a family to grow closer together. You inevitably face higher risks, but a supportive spouse or significant other will not want you to renounce your dreams for an illusion of stability. Talk to your family, mitigate risks and make intermediate plans. Make sure they know you won’t sacrifice them for the success of your business.
3. People will think I’m crazy.
Starting a new business might seem a crazy idea to many people. It’s much safer to never take a risk and continue working for someone else. But that’s simply unacceptable for an entrepreneur. Accept that your plan is crazy and never forget how many crazy people make a real difference in the world.
4. I don’t know as much as I should.
You probably know a lot about your product or service – enough to answer most questions and solve common issues. Don’t worry if you still don’t feel like an expert yet – learning is not shameful. In fact, without learning you cannot expect your venture to grow. You’ll never finish learning, but consider yourself an expert and deliver excellence as you grow.
5. I’ll fail.
This is the most common fear that prevents people from taking risks. You might believe entrepreneurs simply don’t have this fear or are able to overcome it, but that’s not true. Most fear failure, but taking action is more important. Learn from your mistakes, pivot and adjust your plans, not your goal. Once you distinguish irrational fear of failure from intuitive insight you can clearly identify and solve problems in a rational way. If your fear is vague and general, it’s probably a mental block which needs to be smashed and forgotten.
6. Nobody will believe in me.
Many people doubt that others will take them seriously and believe in their idea. Whether it’s a lack of credentials, gender or any perceived challenge, don’t let these doubts overpower you – show up and deliver. A solid work ethic and a proven track record of achievement are things that others cannot ignore. People might not believe in you now, but they will once they see your results.
Don’t let any of these fears impact your decision to start a business – consider the validity of your concerns, take calculated, informed and decisive steps and strive for growth. Removing irrational fears from your mind will prepare you to face any setback or challenge.
This article has been edited and condensed.
Tess Pajaron is writing on behalf of Open Colleges, Australia’s leading online educator. She has a background in Business Administration and Management and cover stories in careers and self-improvement. Connect with @OpenCollegesAU on Twitter.
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