5 Most Common Challenges Entrepreneurs Face and How to Overcome Them
When you quit your day job to become an entrepreneur, you've also quit the rat race. Yes! Ahhhhh but life is a continuous race, ain't it? Just when you think that everything is going to be alright when you have your own business, all of a sudden you find yourself in a different kind of race, a different set of challenges, a different level of tackling and handling them.
Whether you're a successful and well-established entrepreneur, one way or another, you might have encountered a few of the challenges I mentioned below:
1. Negative Mindset
The battle always starts in the mind! Our own fears, excuses, and just basically any thing that paralyzes us from moving forward to our destiny is cultivated in our mind. Feelings of inadequacy such as "I don't know if I can do this" or "I am not qualified enough to start this happen" – these are often thoughts that entrepreneurs deal with. This can often come from our own low self-esteem, lack of support, or our upbringing.
How to Overcome:
a. Do not entertain the thoughts. Remember that whatever you focus on gets magnified. If you pay no attention to it, it will not linger. But for as long as you are nursing it, it will grow in your head and eventually overtake you!
b. Surround yourself with positive people. Birds of same feathers flock together is a popular saying but it is true. If you hang with negative people who criticize other people and put them down and do pity party, then before long, you will find yourself like one. See why it's important to surround yourself with positive people.
c. Empower yourself by reading inspirational articles, success stories, great books, movies and anything that will encourage you and motivate you. Attend seminars and workshops if you can!
2. Overwhelming Feelings
There is always a huge learning curve when you first start a business. Although you may have lots of experience in the corporate world in your field, it's totally different when you're the captain of your own ship. Now, you have to be the boss, the marketer, the secretary, the customer service person, the shipper, and the list goes on! But these overwhelming feelings surely do not only come to starting entrepreneurs. Some experienced and successful entrepreneurs tend to feel overwhelmed at times too so don't be discouraged.
How to Overcome:
a. Take short breaks in between your tasks. I find that taking 2 or 3 minute break away from my computer helps.
b. Pace yourself. Create a to-do list and make sure that you only put whatever you can handle within a realistic time frame on any given day.
c. Outsource some of your tasks. If you're growing too quick, hire a virtual assistant or a local person who doesn't mind coming over to your home office to help you out with some tasks.
d. Make sure to set aside two days off. A business is a business, however, this time it is yours and you have the flexibility to create your own hours and set your days off without any problem. It is ideal to have a couple of days off or more if you can afford it to avoid possible quick burn out.
e. If you're suffering from information overload, here are some tips. Good read!
3. Lack of Support
Some entrepreneurs have been blessed to have supportive husbands, family, children, and friends. Some of this support group have the ability to help make the entrepreneur's business grow but some could only offer moral support…which, hey, it's more than you could ask for! While some of us are blessed like that, others lack both moral and business support.
How to Overcome:
a. Network with your local business organizations and find people that have the same vision and goal as you do.
b. Find a virtual group of people in Social Media that support and promote each other. (Shameless Plugging: Yes, this is what The Entrepreneur Chic Social Club is all about! Details coming soon! *Wink wink*)
c. Invest in a mentor or a business coach.
4. Growing a Business
The challenge in growing a business mostly lies in the lack of financial resources. Let's face it, money begets money. If you have the money, it's easier to put your product out there in hundreds of thousands of people just like the bigger brands, the Fortune 500 companies. You see them on TV, radio, billboards, social media, and sometimes maybe in your inbox!
Unfortunately, for most small business and starting entrepreneurs, this is not the case. You have to work hard to make money so you can use that to make more money! How ironic, isn't it? But that's where the challenge is! I really do believe that this area of having your own business teaches you a lot about persistence and creates such an experience for you that molds you as a business person.
How to Overcome:
a. Be patient. Growing a business takes time. The level of effort that you put in is directly equivalent to the level of result you're going to get but do not expect an overnight result. It's like planting a seed, it takes time to become a tree.
b. Learn as much as you could about marketing (including social marketing) for as long as your brain can handle without overloading it!
c. Research on ways you can acquire funding. Be creative! (perhaps you can do your own fundraising technique)
See if you might be qualified for a small business loan.
5. Feelings of Wanting to Give Up
Because a business takes time to grow and it usually takes a lot of effort to make it work, feelings of wanting to give up do come sometimes, especially when you're not seeing the results that you want when you want it. Perhaps your funds are already starting to get depleted or you're getting physically and mentally drained.
How to Overcome:
a. Do not entertain the thought.
b. If you're not seeing any results, evaluate your product, service, target market, and your marketing strategies. Perhaps your product isn't the right one for the group of people that you're presenting it to. Maybe it needs to have a lot of improvement in its presentation/packaging or price.
c. Take some time off. Sometimes stepping away gives you a better perspective of where things are at and ideas flow better when your mind is rested.
Hope this helps you! Remember that the most successful entrepreneurs aren't necessarily the most qualified ones! The difference of those who made it in the business and made it great is their persistence! Good things come to those who persevere!
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