STARTING AND MANAGING A BUSINESS FOR PROFITS AND WEALTH
Part 1: POSITIONING FOR OPPORTUNITY
ENTREPRENEURS ARE A SPECIAL BREED – they are a brave lot who are willing to take risks and face an uncertain future, to start and manage their own companies. Perhaps they just want out from the organizations they worked for, perhaps they have ideals on how a company should be run and want to try their hands at it, or maybe they have a great business idea which they are confident will reap them success. In Part One of this series, we touched on the how to position for business opportunities.
Opportunities are always knocking. The question is: “How does one recognize it, when it comes?” Benjamin Disraeli said “ The secret of success in life is to be ready for the opportunity when it arrives ”.
So the first issue in entrepreneurship is recognizing an opportunity and if you are NOT ready; you can walk pass a million-dollar opportunity and not realize it. That happens to be a matter of your mindset, not a skill. As the saying goes, half a glass of water can either be seen as half empty or can be seen as half a glass full. It is obvious that it is NOT the eyes the sees the opportunity; it is your mindset and how you choose to interpret what you see.
Some entrepreneurs start a business when they are struck by a sudden bright idea – the miracle cure, the conceptual breakthrough. But these types of inspiration aren’t the source that entrepreneurs or aspiring entrepreneurs can generally rely on. Imagine having to sit around and wait for this to happen! They are not repeatable on demand, cannot be taught and learned, and are seldom immediately applicable or even feasible. Leonard Da Vinci’s greatest works were mostly useless to him and his contemporaries because the technology wasn’t available to implement them and the society and economy weren’t prepared to accept them. So you need more than blinding flash of creativity and inspiration; looking for opportunity is an organized learnable process. The first process is positioning…
HOW TO POSITION YOURSELF FOR OPPORTUNIES
If an opportunity does not drop on your lap, don’t fret. You can position your self to be more susceptible to opportunities you are seeking. The following eight steps will put you where you want to be.
1. Decide what business area you want to be in.
While some people would make that decision straight from their heart, this can also be a restructured rational decision and it be consciously worked out. You can decide based on areas of interest and things you want to do and things you do not want to do. For instance you can decide you may want to be in the food and beverage business or may be you want to start a coaching business or may be do something on the Internet.
This is an important decision and therefore requires proper guidance and support form experienced people. But it is critical that you separate people who teach you how to fish versus people who give you fishes. Be VERY careful with the person who ask you to do what they do. They give you a fish but it may work well for them but may not for you. On the hand they are those who will guide you through questions and exploration with you. They teach you how to fish…for the right decision. Ultimately, YOU make you own decision.
2. Analyze the skills and knowledge required by that business.
Once you decide your area of interest; do your own research to find out what skills and knowledge is required in order to do well in that area. They may be skills areas that does not interest you in which case, you need to consider leveraging on someone who has that area of skills or knowledge. The question is, should you bring the person in as a potential partner or just find ways to work with that person and be able to have access to that skill set.
3. Acquire some of these skills and knowledge. LEARN at every opportunity.
For those areas of skills and knowledge that you want to have for yourself, start learning. Position yourself to learn. And ONLY learn from the BEST, at least in the geographic location you are in. Be willing to invest in your own learning. The knowledge and skill would be immensely useful in due time.
4. Find good examples of successful people in similar fields. Find out what makes them successful. Read every book and articles you can find about how they do it. Analyze their attitudes, their abilities, your shortcomings and plan to close the gap
5. Start associating and getting to know people who are in the area of business that you are or want to be in. When I wanted to be a trainer; I traveled to Singapore, the U.S. and other countries just to hang around with successful trainers. However you must be willing to ask for help, guidance and the only thing you need is to be humble. You would be very surprised by how many people willing to help as long as you are humble enough to ask and to learn. And by the way it does not only have to be successful people you can learn from; you can also learn from people who did not succeed and know why they did not.
6. Become whatever it is you want to be and need to be.
If you want to be in a business area that require you to make personal transformation then you have to be willing to make those changes. Be the person you want to be BEFORE you become. So if you want to be a successful business coach, behave, talk, listen, dress like a coach.
7. Be around people in the business. Join networks.
Spend more time with the community where the people in that business are in. You may have to spend less time with your old buddies but as Robert Kiyosaki say to me; Before you learn how to make money you must first learn how to make friends. I would just add; the right kind of friends.
8. At the appropriate time, when you spot or sense the opportunity, go after it…
This will come; it is just a matter of time
Opportunity search lies in looking for changes. Change is all around. More than that, we now living in a world with tremendous changes and it only goes faster and further. I am constantly amazed and excited by the speed of changes in the mobile marketing and the social media marketing world. And in this era of changes; some individuals and companies will capitalize on it and prosper while those who could not change, would not, choose not to or simply just don’t see it, will deteriorate and decline.
Why? Because successful individuals and companies recognize that things must change, and they position themselves to exploit these changes while others see change as only a threat and choose to avoid it or just be oblivious to it
Great ideas shouldn’t be ignored when encountered, but we can’t sit and wait around for it to happen as I have said earlier. My friend told me that it is like finding money in the street. You’re glad it was there and can certainly use it, but you wouldn’t walk around in the streets looking for money to be found on the ground in order to pay for your lunch that day!
There is an organized process to opportunity search. This removes the “hit or miss” danger, and reliance on that rare “flash of insight” or “breakthrough idea.” We will cover that in the next part on SEARCHING FOR OPPORTUNITY.