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Younger generations are increasingly looking for meaning in his work. Aside from a great promising start at the end of the road, entrepreneurship is attracting young talent in search of purpose and accomplishment. These young leaders want to become independent but also want to have a positive impact on society. While they have a vision and a goal to bring innovation and change, creating a business is not a walk in the park. It requires a lot of preparation. Try to answer the following 10 questions before you start your entrepreneurial journey:
1. Why do you want to start your own business?
Entrepreneurship is exaggeratedly glorified and distorted on social media. It’s really about building a business that solves a problem for a consumer. It’s not about driving nice cars or posting beautiful photos on social media. In fact, real entrepreneurship seems quite the opposite of what we see on social media.
Do we need a certain level of luck, genetics and an environment around us to be entrepreneurial? Yes, a little, sure. But also, anyone can solve problems anywhere in the world. This is true for both small and large problems. The choice comes in the decision to find people who have needs, desires and problems to which you can offer a solution.
It is also a choice that each of us can make about how well we want to solve this problem: how obsessed we are willing to be with this solution and how much more we are willing to give good service to customers.
Related: How to Become an Entrepreneur: Where to Start and More
2. What is the problem that especially affects you?
If you want to have a viable business, it is important to have a clear mission. Given the purpose of your project, you will need to know the real needs of your territory. Start by doing market research to understand what people face on a daily basis and what they expect as solutions.
Beyond the business solution also comes personal and emotional responsibility: shaping ourselves and growing to be able to handle and maneuver through constant stress and difficulty. This means developing personal awareness to see our shortcomings and make up for those with smart business decisions. It means balancing planning and strategy with real and excellent execution.
3. What do you want to achieve?
Describe your ideal project. Imagine your project in a way that could flourish completely, ignoring current limitations. With this exercise, project yourself in a year and in two or three years. Identify as accurately as possible what you would like to achieve by carrying out this project. Even if you are in the early stages of creation, it is very important to reflect on your vision, your mission, and your goals.
4. Do you have the skills to implement your project?
Let’s be honest, you can’t make an impact in the world just with beautiful values. Dare to take this path means changing your way of life, sometimes radically. It is essential to identify your strengths and talents. These are the skills you have at your disposal.
On one side of a list, keep those skills you already have. On the other hand, review the general skills needed to complete the project. From now on, you’ll be able to know if you need specific certifications, ways to acquire these skills, or even how to train.
Determining the right skills also includes deciding which skills to capitalize on and which to look for externally (e.g., finding a partner, considering collaborations with other professionals).
Related: The first question to ask yourself if you want to be an entrepreneur but don’t know where to start
5. What are your needs?
To make your project a reality, you will have various needs such as: feeling supported, having a professional network, and above all, having the money needed to start your business. Once you’ve listed your needs, take stock of what you currently have.
Once you have a clear idea of the needs you need to cover, it’s time to act or seek outside help. Sometimes, you’re not able to fill them out on your own, so you have to turn to people around you who can come up with a solution.
6. Who can help you?
Once you have defined your needs and have a clearer idea, it is time to take stock of your networks (personal and professional). Surely you have people around you who can help you in one way or another. Don’t delay: contact them.
Ask them to join you for a meeting or by phone where you can exchange with them and receive their feedback on your project. The success of an entrepreneurial project depends largely on the quality of your professional network. That said, don’t forget the support of your private circle (family and friends).
Another way to find the right support is by consulting aids, training programs and support available in your city or region for entrepreneurs. You can even find these programs online. Similarly, attending a coworking space can also help expand your professional network. When you start an entrepreneurial journey, part of your time will be spent networking and attending events.
7. Is your project viable in the long run?
Starting a business is good, but it’s even better to be able to make a living from it! It is crucial to question the viability of your project. To find out if you can live with it and if it will work, the only way is to try it. The first reason for business failure is the lack of need in the market, hence the importance of analyzing your market and testing your idea as soon as possible in your environment.
8. What is the state of your market?
Carrying out a market study will allow you to check if there is a market and a real need for your product or service. The term “market research” is often frightening, but rest assured, it is far from insurmountable, thanks to the tools offered by digital technology.
The crucial issue of a market study is competition. Instead of seeing it as an external threat to your project, try to see it as a reality and an opportunity. Instead of reinventing the wheel, take inspiration from what’s already on the market and think about what you can do differently (e.g., adopt a different approach or method, highlight your talents and experience, or find a unique communication style).
Related: So you want to start a business: what is your first step?
9. Who are your customers?
When you come to everyone, you don’t come to anyone! You need to determine in advance the typical profile of your customers, that is, segment them. Once you have done the theoretical analysis of your goal, you will need to verify the theory on the ground through interviews.
10. How will you test your idea / activity?
Many entrepreneurs expect to have the perfect offer before launching their business. It makes no sense to launch a product or service that no one wants. Instead of waiting for everything to be perfect, think about how you can test your idea as soon as possible (e.g., gather a community around you, create your own content, create a landing page, etc.). This will let you know if the project is worth investing extra time, money and energy.
A business incubator is also a very interesting device that offers a safe opportunity to test your business in real life. Discover organizations in your city or region that can help you fix missing points in your project and help you grow quickly.
Entrepreneurship is surely a complex path when you are not fully prepared. However, with the help of digital preparation, networking, and good planning, you will be able to evaluate your business idea, create a business model, and validate your idea through testing.