The Entrepreneur’s Dilemma
There are a million companies being registered annually with the CIPC. The rate of registration too increases on an annual basis and this is great news.
While that’s the case, good news often come with bad news.
The bad news is that the majority of these businesses never take off or we never ever hear about their existence. When the CIPC pulls out their reports and databases, they assume that the more the numbers of company registrations the more the chances of success; for instance, if we have 10 new companies, if 1 out the 10 succeeds is not as bad compared to having 100 new companies per month and 10 of those actually making it.
The Enterprise Development Industry of course is up in arms to bridge the gap, and among those, lack of infrastructure support and proper training contributes to the business failure rate. The presidency went as far as developing a new ministry that focuses on the development of entrepreneurs and businesses while on the other hand business incubators are doing their bit to assist where needs be, but this alone do not contribute heavily to success as from experience.
As someone who develops products, brands and TV shows, I have come to see that there are similarities in the success of both (Products, brands and TV shows) and businesses and it all boils down to how well you package and deliver your product or business.
The word you are looking for is; quality, substance, or uniqueness.
Like everything else, a product without substance lacks character, good intentions and over time fades.
Like everything, an artist without substance lacks quality, integrity and will over time be forgotten.
Like everything, so is with entrepreneurship or a business without substance.
How do we define this, how can you tell if you have one or embedded quality, substance or uniqueness in your business or product?
The rise and fall in start ups all boils down to how well you define yourself relative to your business, as this is the core distinguishing feature of your business.
Your character matters the most.
Many try by simply looking at it from what the world needs instead of offering what is truly their gift, their quality or substance.
Jon Westenberg says there is a reason why there is a ‘gap’ or a ‘whole’ in any industry. Solving it won’t make you the greatest but a typical business.
This leads you to creating a mediocre company, brands and that explain why Henry Ford said if I asked people what they want, the’d say a faster horse, not a Ford Mustang — for instance.
The dilemma is this.
An entrepreneur is born from the need to create something of unique substance. Many people go about it the wrong way by creating a company then figuring out what to do. Guess what. I did it too, it flopped — big time. What did I expect? I don’t know but I never knew any better.
You too can try creating company first, but it is not worth.
Develop, Define, Reinvent, re-brand, and re-engineer until you’re convinced.
I pioneered still and found some tragic discoveries.
A business is founded to create a thing that has never been seen or presented in the best way known to mankind.
This sounds cliché and you probably heard of it. I know.
Let’s rephrase rather.
What is one thing you can deliver best and know that no one can deliver it like you do?
· If they can, it will never be like yours, no matter their budgets, no matter their technical expertise.
· That one thing is your business.
· What’s that one trait you have?
· What’s that one thing you know, can see everyday, obsessed about, we know and people you know, know you are good at?
It’s probably talking (Speaker — Consultant), Or you like style & colours, (Fashion). What about food?, Drawing (Graphic Art, Architect) — Or you can read people’s emotions (Psychiatrist/Psychologist).
Each one of us got this one thing, a talent, a skill, a trait but few don’t know what to do with it. A few who know are still wondering what to do with it. Those who already know are now rich.
I can list a whole lot of names.
That’s the one thing that is your business, and it is your responsibility to ingest it in your business.
It is easy as that but not quite easy.
For instance, I pretty much know best how to connect dots and see things people can’t see. I also happen to know how to package, which makes me a researcher and a great writer. I am not a writer first, and then the other way around. No, and unfortunately that’s how our education system is rigged to do — to make us things instead of turning us into who we truly are.
It starts with the core skill that is effortlessly present within you.
For instance, journalists do not really love writing, they love uncovering, questioning, discovering things and that leads then to journal, write and report. These are those gossip girls in high school who knew exactly who dated who and who broke up with who.
A film maker is a visual novelist, he/she is driven by edge to create a world that does not exist and this is what ultimately makes him/her a film makers first — before he/she become the actual film maker.
Artists are ‘specialist expressionists’ — they hear sounds and are driven by melodies and upon all, they love expressing themselves by honoring who they are by expressing how they feel through rhythm. It is an expression through music that makes an artist and artist first.
Using the same logic, the same is true with business.
If your business does not honour its original obsession it is sure to fade. If you start your business as a company first, without defining it, and aligning it with your touch, like Steve Jobs did, everyone will tell you what to do, how to run your business, and you will do as the wish, and then fail, simply because you had no direction from the word go, like artists who came and went by without real impact…