What all first time Entrepreneurs should know before starting a business

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Entrepreneurship is in every sense of it a lifestyle, an attitude and a perspective- a way of seeing the world. The entrepreneurial lifestyle, attitude, and perspective determine whether a business succeeds or fails.

Before starting a business, your primary responsibility will be to acquaint yourself with the entrepreneurial attitude and perspective, and be willing to slog in the lifestyle for several years.

As a result of the celebrity and wealthy status enjoyed by successful entrepreneurs, we tend to build castle in the air when starting a business or making up our minds to do so. We fail to give sufficient thought to the hassles, strenuous efforts, and endless hard work that go into building a successful business. We focus on the boons and neglect the toil. Entrepreneurship is a lifestyle of toil, at least at the beginning.
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  • Hard and smart works

Entrepreneurship provides a level playing field for most people to achieve success. But not everyone can commit to the level of hard and long hours of work that building a business requires. So many components need to fit together and operate in harmony for a business to survive the startup stage and thrive thereafter. At the initial stage of the business, the entrepreneur will juggle between the technical activities involved in developing his product or business-this alone is a lot already- and every other business function. He will be doing marketing, design-at least to a prototype stage, among others.

Until you build something that attract interest from prospective partners, don’t expect to get a cofounder at an instant.
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  • Personal savings

Failure is probable, you’ll be better off staking your personal savings as your primary investment source. Banks won’t lend you money unless you have substantial assets to offer them as collateral, something most starting entrepreneurs can’t afford. You can borrow from family and friends when capital needs become dire. Loosing money you borrowed from family and friends will strain valuable relationships. Grants are all over the place, but your chances of receiving grants or Venture capital are slim-less than 1% of startups get funded by VCs.
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  • Adaptability

Your day as an entrepreneur will differ remarkably from your day as employee. You’ll constantly encounter changing circumstances demanding you to be flexible and adaptable. There are highs and lows; you must spend your energy and resources during boom time in a way that leaves something for periods when revenues and funds bottom.
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  • Continous learning

Endless acquisition of knowledge is the hallmark of the true entrepreneur. They learn from all sources including competitors and customers. Business success depends largely on the knowledge of the specific industry the entrepreneur possess. If you’re going into entrepreneurship, you’re invariably signing up for a life dedicated to continous learning.
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  • Positive mindset

Heavy doses of optimism are required to plow through the difficult and mountainous terrain of entrepreneurship. If you fail, which will likely be more than once, positive thinking is what you’ll need to rise and try again, telling yourself that you can do better this time around. Thinking positively will allow you to see the silver lining in most failures, or the opportunities therein. There’s an overwhelming levels of negativity around us, where obvious opportunities pose threats to some people; positive thinking to the rescue. There’s alway a lesson to be gained from failures.
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