Many new entrepreneurs start their ventures wide-eyed, very positive about what they’re about to do. This optimism is a double-edged sword. On one hand, it gives you that push to pursue things and make them happen. But, on the flip side, it can make you vulnerable to unrealistic expectations. The latter is what you should be watching out for. If you’re already getting fixated on these misguided thoughts on what it means to live the business life, your better change your perspective as early as now:
Expectation #1: “I will make a lot of money.”
Of course. This would be at the top of this list. You expect to earn a lot more than your 9-6 job. However, while business is primarily a profit-generating endeavor, you need to understand that before you hit your financial goals, you’re going to put in some sacrifices.
These sacrifices sometimes seem to outweigh your gains. It will feel like you’re cashing in more than you’re getting, that your efforts don’t pay off. You’re going to experience this so many times, surely in the first two years of your business. If you’re so fixated with how you’re not getting any returns, at least in this period, you might just abandon the endeavor altogether — right before it actually takes off and produces results.
If you’re serious about your business, you need to have a motive that’s beyond earning money. You need to be passionate about your endeavor. While you’re still thinking about which business to pursue, consider ventures that you would persist in regardless of dire circumstances.
Expectation #2: “I’m going to be my own boss.”
This is, in fact, the reason most people quit their corporate jobs. They don’t want to work anymore for someone, but rather they want to do things their way, at their own pace, with their unique goals. The thing is, that’s not the case in real life. Yes, you’re the frontliner when it comes to running operations, but your decisions will always be influenced by others.
If you sought financial assistance, then your investors will have a say, for instance. If you pursued a restaurant or phone repair franchise, the parent company will have a set plan already. Of course, your customers will more or less dictate a lot of things in your business, from which products to prioritize down to where your stores should be. You need to break that illusion of being your own boss. You still work for someone, but that shouldn’t frustrate or discourage you. In fact, that should humble you, and at the same time, keep you on your toes.
Expectation #3: “I’ll be doing what I’d love to do all these years.”
As mentioned, you have to dig deep at your passions before starting a business. Maybe you found it already. Perhaps you love cooking and getting people’s tummies satisfied. That’s good, but to assume that you’ll be in that in-love state all throughout is a fatal mistake. There will be times when you won’t feel inspired by doing what you love to do. Plus, there are also other aspects of the business that you don’t necessarily like doing — like bookkeeping, talking to suppliers, or promoting your business on social media. As early as now, prime your mind into thinking that your passions will change and that you will have to do things you might not like.
Beware of these misguided assumptions in starting a business. They will, for sure, cloud your judgments and keep you from reaching success. It might even discourage you from doing business altogether. So take your mind off these things, and instead do a reality check.