For most young people who have chosen to be entrepreneurs, there is an initial sense of entitlement that we have. We believe once we run a business, then, all our family and friends are duty-bound to patronise us. Ideally, that may be the case but in reality, things hardly ever work that way. Matter of fact, the people who are most likely to take you and your business for granted are family and friends. Often than not, they also nurture a sense of entitlement to your products and services.
For those who come from families that are inclined towards building careers and climbing the cooperate ladders, you can be rest assured that you family will struggle to understand your need to build a business. They are likely to worry that you are investing your time in uninsured vanity and you may end up wasting your youth.
Someone once asked me what it was like being an entrepreneur because she was considering making the bold step too. I told her that to be a successful entrepreneur; she had to be sure that was what she wanted to do all her life and that she can stick to it; there could never be an option B. The moment she makes moves to create a back-up plan to entrepreneurship, she has failed.
I stated further that she had to be ready to take the lone road of entrepreneurship. I painted an illustration for her, that being an entrepreneur instead of taking the career path is like seeing a well-graded road and deciding to take a rough and pothole-ridden one.
If she has a staunch support system, then it’s like having an air conditioned, well cushioned luxury car to drive down the horrid road. It is still rough but she can enjoy some comfort. Not having a support system is like driving a rickety bus down the horrid road; the brake may fail and it may feel like the bus will come apart.
The trick to succeeding as an entrepreneur is to keep going no matter what and not doubt for a single second that you will succeed. You can say that being an entrepreneur takes complete blind faith and trust that you will emerge successful, especially in our clime. So, it’s best to chuck all sense of entitlement in the bin from the start.
Also, don’t be picky about who or how you are supported. Many times, in the course of your entrepreneurial journey, you will need money – maybe millions – and you may not easily find someone to help you. Don’t let that make you bitter, cynical or hard-hearted. Take all the love and support you can get, soak it up and let it propel you in your journey towards greatness.
If someone dear disappoints you, they don’t give you the millions you need but offer you prayers, take it and believe. If all you get is a hug and a smile, take that too and run with it. If you get ice cream and pizza, savour them, knowing that they came with a measure of love; let it spur you on still.
I’ll say it again, chuck that sense of entitlement and chuck it fast. Don’t forget to toss out negativity too. Remember, keep naysayers at arm’s length and at all cost.