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5 Tips for Becoming an Entrepreneur

5 Tips for Becoming an Entrepreneur

Can your sales skills close business deals?

Abby M. Locke | Executive Career Insights

August 13, 2010

A good friend of mine recently announced to me that she is going to take the plunge – she is finally moving from corporate employee to entrepreneur.

Sounds exciting right? No-one standing over your shoulder, the ability to call your own shots, and being able to take on great projects that you will enjoy….well, becoming an independent consultant or solopreneur requires a lot more thought, work and preparation than you would imagine.

If you are frustrated with the corporate world and have a strong desire to start your own business that is in line with your vision and values, here are few things you need to know:

1) Do you know your business?

Consider if you have sufficient knowledge, experience or business understanding in the area of your choice. Clients purchase “you” long before they purchase your product or service – if you are thinking of branching into a new area, be sure to get the support and training you need to gain the confidence of potential clients.

2) Do you have the required investment funds?

As an entrepreneur, you cannot easily predict your revenue stream from week to week or even day to day for that matter. So unless your have a healthy pipeline of clients ready to go, you may have to tap into your savings, maintain a part-time job or establish a line of credit.

3) Do you like selling?

Think for a second about your best sales experience, what did that person do that effectively convinced you to make the purchase? Now, switch gears and remember your worst salesperson encounter – focus on everything that person did that turned you off. Get the picture?

When you are running the show, you are also the primary spokesperson, cheerleader and salesperson for your company. Take advantage of sales training or even sales coaching services, your bottom-line will thank you for it.

4) Can you handle a high level of risk?

Being an entrepreneur is not for the faint of heart – trust me, I know:) You have to be willing to put all of yourself to make the business a profitable one – that could mean long work hours, sacrificing personal interests, living on limited resources and truly making decisions when the immediate outcome is unclear.

5) Can you ride the waves?

Flexibility is one of the greatest skills you will need to master as an entrepreneur. Market and industry conditions are always changing and technology continues to push the bar even higher on how you will need to compete. If you like structure or find it hard to make rapid changes, then entrepreneurship may not be the right decision for you.

Overall

As challenging as it can be at times, I encourage anyone who has the bug to do your research, do your homework, learn from others, invest in training and resources and give it a try. If it is really eating at you, you will never know unless you give it a try.

This article was originally published on Executive Career Insights.