11 Things You will Never Hear an Entrepreneur Say
Success greatly comes from your attitude and the way you present yourself. That also includes knowing what to say and sometimes, more importantly, what not to say. This applies whether you are an entrepreneur or something completely different; the principle stays the same. So, here’s a list of 11 things a successful entrepreneur will never say.
“I just need that one good idea.”
Life-changing ideas don’t happen every day, so if this is your attitude, you might want to rethink your perspective. Not everyone is Einstein, so you shouldn’t even aim to be, because it will probably get you nowhere. What matters is your ability to execute your idea, that’s what makes a successful entrepreneur. When you think about it, geniuses weren’t people who came up with something groundbreaking, but those who have given structure to an existing concept. Your ability to materialize the idea is everything.
Further Reading: The Myth of the Great Idea – Ramit Sethi
“If I could just gather the capital I need.”
Let’s be honest, you can never have too much money when starting a business. Being a great entrepreneur also means thinking outside the box when it comes to finding the necessary funding. It’s all about whether you see the glass as half-empty of half-full. To achieve your goals, you can’t focus on what you don’t have, but rather on how to stretch what you do have to maximize the results.
Further Reading: Money doesn’t always fuel startup success, experience shows – SF Chronical
“The competition is too strong.”
A successful entrepreneur won’t let competitors discourage him; quite the opposite – he will allow it to drive him to be better and work harder. No market is impenetrable, you just need to be willing to really work for it and try to be the best that you can be.
Further Reading: How startups should deal with competition – The Guardian
“I know everything there is about this.”
This is the oblivious arrogance that will lead you nowhere. Successful people know that no matter how much you’ve read on a particular subject, how much progress you’ve made or how much time you’ve spent analyzing something, there is always more to learn. Continually being curious is what allows you to evolve and become a real expert (or remain one).
Further Reading: The Hardest Lessons for Startups to Learn – Paul Graham
“I can do it all more efficiently than anybody else.”
Sure, you’re the big boss and you have greater expertise than your employees, but that doesn’t mean that you can do everything yourself. Being in control of every aspect of your business will eventually lead to mishaps, because no one can watch out for everything at all times. Knowing how to divide the work and what to entrust your team with is what makes a true leader.
Further Reading: Richard Branson on Learning to Delegate – Entrepreneur
“Once we have our customers’ trust, we can cut back.”
Wrong. Very wrong. Never take customer loyalty for granted. Earning trust of your customers should be paramount every moment of every day. Once you do earn it, you need to show appreciation and continue to deliver products of the same quality, if not better. This is a very common mistake beginners make, so just remember: if your customers feel neglected, they will look for a different company that can meet their demands.
Further Reading: 21 Proven Ways Startups Can Build Loyalty With Customers – Founders Grid
“I am entitled to success.”
Just because you are cleverer, more diligent or have a better idea than someone else does not grant you the right to anything. Again, it all comes down to work. You should be the kind of person that works for everything he’s got and never expects anything to be handed to him. With that state of mind, if you don’t succeed at the first try, you’ll get less frustrated and more focused on how you can do better in the future.
Further Reading: Big Egos Will Doom Startups to “Mass Extinction” – ValleyWag
“I only listen to logic, never my gut instinct.”
Making calculated decisions when you know the facts is important but, in reality, there will be times when you don’t have sufficient data to come to a decision. Being an entrepreneur also involves leaning on your instinct, because, often, it’s your gut that will lead you to make an improbable decision that will turn out to be the best one you’ve ever made. It’s about finding a balance between thinking clearly and listening to your intuition.
Further Reading: Why you SHOULD go with your gut: Instinct is better at detecting lies than our conscious mind – Daily Mail Online
“I guess it just wasn’t meant to be.”
Fate is an excuse, it’s a concept quitters use to justify their giving-up. For a driven individual that has a clear goal, no obstacle is too big. Problems that you encounter should be viewed as opportunities to learn and grow, or become even more resilient, not a chance to resign. Some of the most inspiring people were those who didn’t surrender, even when it seemed impossible and everyone kept telling them “no.”
“It’s a bad time to start a company.”
You’ve probably met quite a few people who said this. While finding the right time to start a business or invest is important, there’s also the possibility that you could wait your whole life for a favorable time and miss out. A lot of people do this because they are afraid of change and of the impending responsibility, so they occupy themselves with other things to avoid facing their fear. Real entrepreneurs will never let their chance fly by.
Further Reading: Why to Start a Startup in a Bad Economy – Paul Graham
“I’ll keep the people I know so I wouldn’t hurt their feelings.”
You’re not starting a family here, but a company. While it’s great to have a pleasant working environment and be friendly with your team, you are an entrepreneur first. If someone can’t meet your demands or don’t have enough expertise, they shouldn’t stay at your company just because you don’t have the heart to ask them to leave. Business and friendship mostly don’t blend well, so be prepared to have to make some difficult choices for the benefit of your company.
Further Reading: Startup Mantra: Hire Fast, Fire Fast – TechCrunch
A little change in attitude can do wonders for your results, so work hard, don’t be afraid to express what you need to and think like a winner. Or as Henry Ford wisely put it: “Whether you think you can or you can’t, you are right.”