STARTUP HABITS : Pursuing success isn’t just about doing what works but doing it well at the right time and consistently. Adopting healthy habits is almost impossible. Discipline has been one of the most common traits that runs through most successful entrepreneurs.
The quest to do something different is a dream just anybody can have; but the quest to be a successful entrepreneur is much more difficult to pursue and certainly not everybody’s dream. The huddles that comes along with running a business as it is, puts a toll on startups and keeping good habits is yet another.
The work is enormous; thinking about the needs of people above your needs, finding the best ways to provide solutions to them; dealing with the end users behavioral changes and their unsatisfied needs among many other business practices to keep being successful is indeed a lot of work. But for a startup to be successful, you first need to work on yourself. Not just for once or twice but consistently in order to be accustomed to the habits that ensures success.
In the early days of being a startup, some entrepreneurs are comfortable amidst the moments of rejections, failures and finding the things that works out and don’t for them but as they grow, the pressure keeps them out of check. Nobody develops a good damn habit over-night.
Just as much as running a business is coupled with practices that needs to be reviewed and assessed frequently; so does the habits of entrepreneurs needs same review, assessment and frequently worked on.
Habits are such as ‘soul mates’; they easily get settled with us, even worst the bad ones. It requires much hard work to get raid of them than they are adopted. We all have habits that retrogress our hard effects every now and then. No one speaks perfectionism more than the entrepreneurs who seeks it.
Becoming a successful entrepreneur, some say you need to understand the human needs you seek to solve and how to offer it. But haven learned from the customer’s behavior and changes, my personal growth and needs, I learnt one most important thing about being ‘the entrepreneur’.
The big deal is not first understanding the customers needs you desire to solve, but understanding your own needs, solving them in the best ethical ways and understanding the barriers between knowing exactly what your needs are and what it will take to solve them.
Now, someone would say – that’s a lot. It is quite simple. You can never understand the customers needs, until you have gone through the process of assuming and treating yourself as your first customer. Never forget the business and your personality runs intrinsically. Those two entities can never be set apart.
Somewhat, your personal emotions and attachment to something- ‘the business’ you have built or building will always get in the way of decisions; hence the urgency for you to develop healthy habits that can drive your business to success and making you a successful entrepreneur in the long term.
“Life is short but have a life before your business.”
The most common regrets of some failed startups would be knowing their habits that drew the line between growing a meaningful business, being successful at growing it and failing to master a wining habit to conquer it. They miss out on opportunities to making the right choices, improving the right habits, mastering the act of not consuming themselves into building businesses rather than building themselves to build the businesses. The business needs you; you do not need the business. The dependency rationale is never the business over yourself.
What common habits do most entrepreneurs exhibit that certainly guarantees their doom to becoming successful?
Would you be able to identify which are the bad habits from the good? – YES! Because you would’ve learnt what worked and what didn’t from both habits.
Bad habits sucks, and these habits will ruin you faster than you will ever succeed.
1. COPYCAT – “ANTI-ORIGINAL
Nobody achieves success with being what they are not. Being somebody else rather than being you is a pain; a lot of pain. Most startups are living in the shadows of what they call “mentors”. I’m not saying it’s bad to have a mentor. I’m implying do not live the life of your mentor or anybody you look up to. Be yourself, nurture your own values, appreciate who you are, what you want to be and who your decisions would make you become.
Once in a while, it is admirable to view life from other’s who have lived it longer enough than you have and learn from the path they took. But is a disaster to living same path.
Secondly, build a business based on your personal values. Businesses are guided by their founders values and principles. Don’t build a business in the shadow of another business. Be original with your ideas and with your personal brand behind the business. It is expensive to live in other’s shadow and much costly to run a business that is not original.
I have seen entrepreneurs fall short to this habit many time than good. Impatience derails into frustration and quickly into depression. Startup frets over little problems. They fret when their team is not marching up and even with their customers. The most worrisome, is being impatient with success and growth.
Set goals, take each step at a time. Concentrate on executing each steps you take and enjoy every moment as a growing process. There are no mistakes in business. It’s a decision made at a the right or wrong time. It is a process, appreciate it. If your are impatient as a result of your temperament; which is a personality trait, you can also seek the help of psychologist to manage it.
3. MAKING EXCUSES
Excuses are no different from procrastination. There will always be a reason why it cannot be done at a particular time or later. If you find yourself giving explanations to every single thing without listening to the views of your team, investors and customers, know that you have developed a bad habit of not listening. The moment you begin to make excuses, you have lost control.
Quite a number of startups I have coached, have given many reasons as to why they couldn’t, shouldn’t, and what nots. Some excuses are simply because of fear of change, to lose personal power and to get out of their comfort zones. Don’t be afraid to take risks a business needs to grow and make decisions that will let you grow as an entrepreneur through the experience.
“Challenges are experiences that gives room to growth, don’t excuse it; experience it” – Harmony Attise
The extravagant lifestyle of some startups can greatly affect their business finances. Nobody will question how you enjoy the labor of your hard work. But spend modestly. Businesses always need extra money in hand. Don’t spend it all.
Differentiate between your personal money from your business’s. Don’t spend way into your business’s account. Whatever profit the business makes, is for the business not for your personal use. It is also necessary to put yourself on salary, no matter how little and live within it. Do not make it a habit to be richer than your business and do not spend at the expenses of your business. If you have an extravagant life, it is fun but it is better to save some cash away to run your business. You should not rely on rainmakers, be the rainmaker your business needs.
I do get lazy sometimes, we all do. It only become a setback when it’s developed into a chronic bad habit. You will be surprised to know how many entrepreneurs are lazy.
When you get tired working hours throughout the day, losing sleep and comfort, never forget to take rest. Rest is important as much as the work. The thin line lies between taking rest more than needed and far below needed. How do you keep balance so neither develops into laziness- resting more than needed and breaking down – resting far below needed?
Just set limits
6. WANTING FOR THE PERFECT TIME
Perfect time waits for no man; not even for the successful entrepreneurs. What ever you have got to do, do it within the moment. There is no perfect time to start a business, to build a competent team, to get investment or to take a growth leap. Every time is a perfect for any business activity, as long as it is thoroughly planned and executed.
“ Tomorrow will not come today, if you do not make today your tomorrow” – Harmony Attise.
The future is now, live it and build that business with a killer attitude.