I reckon each and every one of us has had a killer business idea at one point or another. Sometimes it’s a fleeting thought moments before that sweet shut-eye, other times it’s a conscious passion that you’ve spent months – even years – considering.
But I get it, being at the forefront of a business is hard. It’s a lot of responsibility, accountability and, of course, risk of failure. I’m not ignorant – I know why a lot of people shy away from owning their own business and that stinky failure element is high on the list.
So with that being said, I hit up some successful biz owners and asked what their piece of advice would be to anyone who wants to start something up but doesn’t know where to, well… start.
ALWAYS REMEMBER YOUR VISION
“Starting a business is not for the faint-hearted. It takes patience, determination and the ability to get back up after you’ve been knocked down. But once things start to happen, and things fall into place, you know that it’s all been worth it.
The most rewarding part about starting your own business is seeing your passion and your ideas come to life, and knowing that it was you and only you that made it happen. Bringing something new into the world that didn’t exist before, because you have a vision. I find that part of it the most gratifying.
Words I like to live by are ‘a year from now you’ll wish you’d started’ (unknown).”
– Kate Nixon, owner + founder of Kat The Label
KNOW WHAT YOU AND THE BIZ STAND FOR
“Always put people before profit, names before numbers and you will find that profit and numbers will take care of themselves.”
– Dan Terry, owner of The Duke on Queen Street
BE REALISTIC ‘BOUT YOUR GOALS
“I used to be so worried about taking the next step, worried about failure, worried what people would think of my ideas. It wasn’t until I understood that perfection wasn’t really going to make me happy, because a perfectionist never appreciates when they have made an achievement or when things are perfect. Why?
Because they can always be better. Happiness isn’t perfection, my happiness is knowing that I’ve made progress. And if it’s one day at a time then that is ok with me. If you have a passion or a business idea, stop waiting for the perfect time. Get on with it and make progress. Perfect is not an excuse.”
LEARN FROM THE ERROR OF YOUR WAYS
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“I’m the first person in my family to ever start a business so I did it without any guidance, it was trial and error. I had a moderately successful clothing label which had high overheads, before realising the parts of my clothing label I loved were directing shoots and creating, so I turned it into a creative agency and now I work full time directing and styling music videos and commercials and my clients include Smirnoff, Amy Shark, Rihanna and Marc Jacobs.”
CHIP AWAY AT IT, BIT BY BIT
“I wanted to start something for a long time but I kept on putting it off, making excuses. Then I read this book which said if you do just 1% each day, at the end of the year it’ll be 37x better than it was when you started. So my advice would be, whatever it is, just start it and chip away at it little by little, day by day. It might not seem like much now, but in a year’s time it will be a lot.”
– Queenie Tan, founder + owner of Florres Mink Lashes
YOU CAN DO IT.Image: Supplied