Entrepreneurship is a very exciting journey. It can also be very stressful if you are not properly prepared for it. Below are some of the most critical lessons I learned the hard way:
1-Be prepared for social pressure and loneliness. Don’t expect that everyone in your social circle will support your move. In fact, many will oppose it and think you are crazy, especially if you have just left a highly paid job to pursue your entrepreneurship dream. Keep calm and try to surround yourself with like minded people.
2- Aside from the social pressure, new entrepreneurs soon meet the mother of all stresses: running out of cash faster than they imagined. This was one of my biggest challenges when I started my business. It was killing my productivity and ability to make proper decisions. The best way to deal with it is to estimate your business expenses from a reliable business plan. If they came out as X, DO NOT start your business until you have secured savings of 3 X. Running out of cash in the beginning can happen quicker than you ever imagined.
3- Many people choose to work on their own to escape the pressure of a daily job and a nagging boss. They soon realize that they actually work more hours per day and become nagged by their clients rather than their bosses. Lori Greiner summarized it very well when he said: “Entrepreneurs are willing to work 80 hours a week for themselves to avoid working 40 hours a week for someone else.” The message is you are not up for a picnic, at least not in the beginning. So forget about the dream of working from anywhere in the world where there is a WIFI. This is unlikely to happen in the first few years of venturing on your own.
4- It is important to ensure your partner supports your move. Having a supportive partner can mark the difference between success and failure. By supportive I mean someone who strongly believes in your dream and perhaps is willing to cover your personal expenses until your business picks up.
5- If you are not passionate about your business idea, it’s not worthwhile to pursue it because you will quit at the very first obstacle. In other words, do not pursue someone else’s dream. That is what a job is made for.