Startup Businesses - January 14, 2012
A burst of inspiration can occur at any moment. Sometimes an idea that can revolutionize an industry or consumers' way of life is the result of hours of research, or it strikes an individual in an instant. Some lucky thought leaders may come up with a million-dollar concept one day that winds up launching their careers. Others may have to work much harder at unique ideas to turn them into successful projects. There are different ways to lay the groundwork for a new business idea or model. Entrepreneurs come from all backgrounds and levels of experience, bringing unique insight and skills to each endeavor.
Just as new business ideas are conceived through different methods across all industries, what entrepreneurs do with the concepts once they have been formulated also varies greatly. Some entrepreneurs may sell an idea to a larger company, others will work for investors to back the project and a few may try to support their own business from start to finish. No matter how entrepreneurs go about launching a concept, all those pursuing business ventures have the same goal of turning an idea into a profit. In fact, most entrepreneurs want to not only make a single concept successful, but continue to brainstorm new innovations to advance the market, challenge competitors and create a sustainable share in the industry for long-term gains.
Entrepreneurs are a unique breed of business professionals. They often contain the determination and qualities that lend themselves to leadership roles. While these qualities are admirable, they make it difficult for entrepreneurs to work under levels of authority within a standard system. Entrepreneurs are driven by their own goals and ideas, and thus do not need to be micromanaged when they truly believe in a project. When the ambition, drive and perseverance of an entrepreneurial worker are stifled by corporate logistics and bureaucratic limitations, he or she may underperform, act out or become restless and unsatisfied with the work.
Therefore, it is ideal for entrepreneurs to find career paths that offer freedom to make their own schedules, as well as enough creativity and risk to pique and maintain their interest. Entrepreneurs often come up with a new idea or concept and work hard to translate it into a business model. However, one idea is not enough in today's market to sustain a long-term career. There are many ways inventors and entrepreneurs can maintain the momentum and success of a business idea, turning a project into a career path. Some work on new business brainstorms on the side while offering consulting services or contractor work. This allows each new concept to grow and mature into a business strategy, while providing the entrepreneur with a financial safety net to stay afloat if the idea fizzles or fails over time.
Another common practice for long-term entrepreneurs is to constantly network with other professionals in a variety of industries. Having contacts available allows entrepreneurs to tap into expertise, research, resources and insight to support a new business concept and increase potential for success. As most entrepreneurs today operate in the physical and digital realms, developing relationships with professional contacts can be accomplished on the go as well as face-to-face. There does not have to be a formal meeting or networking event to spark a conversation between professionals. Online and social communications are enabling entrepreneurs to create a depository of resources and guidance at their fingertips to accelerate decision making in a fast-paced economic climate. Entrepreneurs looking to turn good ideas into a career must have an extensive list of contacts on which to call for favors to efficiently launch a concept into a new market and increase profits. As entrepreneurs tend to maintain fluid career paths, continually transitioning into new roles or markets, an extensive network of contacts can prevent long, costly delays in their businesses.
While networking with like-minded professionals, business owners should always think of themselves as entrepreneurs, even if they are not currently working on a project for themselves. By representing themselves as thought leaders and business adventurers, entrepreneurs can maintain conversations with key industry players who will want to be associated with determined, driven individuals in the field. Experts will have no interest in sharing insights with regular employees working under a competitor. But entrepreneurs looking to innovate an industry and branch off on their own with experimental strategies and designs is a much more appealing audience for industry leaders.
Making a living off of new ideas, startups and consulting services requires significant ambition and self-confidence. While entrepreneurs are often skilled at selling their skills and worth to industry leaders, branding is still important. Entrepreneurs should focus on not only collecting business ideas and resources to launch a new strategy, but also building a strong reputation within certain communities and markets. Without efficient branding tactics in place, entrepreneurs will struggle to differentiate themselves from competitors, or access favors from contacts who do not remember them. The branding of an entrepreneur should demonstrate the innovative work and strategies being presented by the individual, as well as how these factors have led to success in the past. Entrepreneurs work to set themselves apart from the status quo, proving their ideas are worth investing in and can make a difference. Branding for entrepreneurs should deliver this message effectively for long-term success.