20 Tips for First-Time Entrepreneurs

It can be scary and daunting to venture out on your own as an entrepreneur, but there are so many amazing benefits — being your own boss, having flexible hours, and following your passion just to name a few. But being an entrepreneur is also complicated because there are so many challenges and things to handle at the same time.

By utilizing all the accessible advice and tips out there, you can really set yourself up for success and learn from other people’s failures. This is because being successful means learning from those who have already achieved their goals — so here are 20 quick tips to help boost your success as a first-time entrepreneur:

1. Follow your Passion — this may seem obvious, but if you don’t love what you do, you won’t be motivated to work at it. And with no 9-5 commitment, the drive has to come all from you.

2. Challenge Yourself — if you think you can achieve something, think bigger. Challenge yourself to think big picture and learn and grow more everyday.

3. Take Risks — you can’t be successful without taking risks. You never know until you try, and you will always regret not going for it. High risk = high reward.

4. Believe in yourself — there will be naysayers and people who just don’t support you out there, so you have the be the one that believes in yourself and your business. It will open up endless possibilities.

5. Work at It — you can’t expect to grow your business if you’re not putting in the work to make it grow. Starting a business is super hard and requires lots of your time and energy (especially in the beginning), so know that you have to put in the time.

6. Research — what is your target demographic? Who are your competitors? All these important facts are learned by doing research, so you can target your product and content more effectively.

7. Listen to your Customer — they are the ones driving your business, so you need to listen to them to figure out what they want. When you have happy customers, you will create a loyal clientele that always comes back.

8. Accept Failure — not everything you venture out to do will be a success. Understand that some things won’t work out, and be okay with experiencing a failure (because this does not mean that YOU personally are a failure).

9. Play the Long Game — It’s easy to get caught up in the moment and forget what your long term goals are. Consistently check in with yourself and figure out what choices will benefit you the most in 1 year, 5 years, and 10 years from now. Often, short-term tasks have no bearing on your business in the long run.

10. Network Always — This is too important if you want to stay on top of your game! Take any opportunity to network and learn by meeting new people; it will always pay off (both literally and figuratively).

11. Monitor Your Finances — you must keep on top of all of your expenses in order to avoid running out of funds. Maintain a low overhead and be frugal with expenses as well as avoid any unnecessary costs.

12. Research the Competition — no matter what business venture you are in, you will always have competitors. Keep on top of what they are doing and adapt your business to be better.

13. Hire Like-Minded People — when you are hiring other people to help you live out your dream, you have to make sure that they understand who you are and what your brand is all about. Any employee has to fit the mould of the company culture you are trying to build.

14. Customer Service is Everything — People will come back to you when they know they are valued and appreciated. Especially when starting up, you want your early customers to give great referrals and develop word of mouth to their friends and colleagues.

15. Over-Deliver — People will always appreciate it when you take a little extra time to show them you care about their best interest.

16. Accept Complaints — sometimes complaints can feel like a wave of negativity, anxiety and stress. But if you truly listen to what a complaining customer has to say, you can then understand and adapt your business to prevent more complaints from coming in.

17. Always Adapt — Being an entrepreneur means being able to swiftly change direction when need be. Since our world is constantly changing, you must be able to change and adapt with it if you want to make it in business.

18. Revisit Goals Often — The goals that you set for yourself on Day 1 should always remain in the back of your head. You should always be working towards those goals and never lose sight of all the reasons why you started.

19. Ask for Help — whether you like it or not, there will always be times where you just can’t manage it all. Luckily, whether it be Google or an attentive spouse, there are loads of resources out there to support you. Don’t hesitate to ask for help when you really need it.

20. Go for It — Like Nike’s famous slogan, just go for it. There will be hurdles, obstacles, and setbacks, but there is nothing more important than learning to push past any issues.

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