Entrepreneurial education is technically basic education for anyone with entrepreneurial ambitions. It is the life-changing experience that successful entrepreneurs have had on their entrepreneurial journey. This education is not necessarily taught in a classroom, it is fluid, and it impacts each budding entrepreneur in his/her own unique way. This post focuses on 10 of the most crucial entrepreneurial lessons you can learn from successful entrepreneurs:
- Time is not money. It is more!
Money is an important resource in business, but the good thing about it is that you can always gain more of it. That also goes for customers, employees, and investors. Time, however, is the one important resource that you can never get enough of. You must learn to make the most of your time.
- Smart work supersedes hard work
You will need to work hard to make it in the highly-competitive business world, but hard work can only get you so far. You must work smart to succeed. Delegate out roles that can be delegated, outsource the skills you are unable to learn, hire the right people, and have good timing when making new investments.
- Creativity is critical
Creativity means coming up with ideas that are not only ambitious but also feasible. Learn to be innovative; the art of stimulating your brain to be constructive and productive. When competitors see hindrances, try to find viable solutions.
- Discipline is a virtue
Everything you do now should be aimed at increasing sales, penetrating new markets, attracting the best talents, and convincing investors. If what you are doing does not benefit your business in any way, why are you doing it? Take social media, for example. Someone can choose to spend a whole workday chatting with friends and sharing jokes with strangers on social media. Another person will spend a whole day marketing his services and/or products on different social platforms. One is an entrepreneur; the other one is, well, indescribable.
- Failure isn't necessarily bad
Failure is a learning opportunity- not the end of your entrepreneurial hopes. It should teach you how to make better choices in the future.
- The customer is not always right
The phrase “the customer is always right” has been used frequently for so long to the point that some young entrepreneurs think it is true. But it is not. You don’t have to bend over backward every time, even when the customer is deliberately being difficult. Customers too can be egocentric, malicious, and painfully demotivating. The best thing is to always give your customers the benefit of the doubt at first, but preserve your dignity if he/she insists on making your life hard.
- Marketing shortcuts are expensive in the long run
The message that you include with your marketing strategies can make a major impact on the success or failure of your entrepreneurial future. Improve the quality of the content you post on your blog, avoid those “budget” social influencers, and don’t entrust quacks with your marketing and SEO. The damage marketing shortcuts do to your brand’s reputation can be irredeemable.
- Your business is only as good as your team
The talents of the people you work with, their commitment and their skillset determine how good you become and how fast you achieve your entrepreneurial goals. It is nearly impossible to business alone, so you must recruit people with particular talents and motivate them to give their all in whichever role you assign them. You will need special skills, life coach training, for example, for you to successfully convince other people to work for you, some of who are more talented than you are.
- Self-belief is key
You have to believe in yourself for others to see your potential and invest in your dream. Self-belief helps you navigate the many entrepreneurial hurdles you encounter along the way. It helps you execute ideas even when naysayers are discouraging you from all fronts.
- Your personal brand is equally as important as the company brand
Many entrepreneurs build their company brand to perfection and forget that building their personal brand is equally important. Note that your competitors are also building brands for their companies. The only way you stand out- the only way you get the authority and credibility to make noticeable strides in your industry- is when your personal brand supersedes your competitors’ brands, even as much as you are offering the same quality of services/products.
The 10 essential entrepreneurial lessons can help you become a distinguished entrepreneur in your field. You can also apply these lessons in your personal life if you wish to achieve growth and happiness. Don’t isolate one lesson- focus on implementing each one of them.