Did you know that the most common ambition in Britain is to start your own business? Research released today by tech giant Huawei has revealed that 57% of us have this entrepreneurial spirit and, furthermore, that a huge 77% of us are planning to act on these business-minded inclinations in the coming year.
But, whilst starting a business might be the dream of many, turning that dream into a lucrative reality is considerably trickier. Huawei’s findings, released to coincide with the recent launch of their new Mate 10 Pro smartphone, prove that some of the biggest hurdles are lack of confidence, cash flow problems and the use of inadequate technology when trying to get a new business off the ground.
So, whilst there’s no generic recipe for success, there are certain words of wisdom that crop up time and time again – time to listen up…
Love what you do – If money is the only thing is driving you out of the door in the morning, you’re unlikely to keep up the effort for long. Going it alone takes time, but if you’re passionate about the end results, and the daily tasks that lead to them, then the results will be worth every hour.
Take it a step at a time – Rome wasn’t built in a day, Gents. It might be an overused cliché, but it’s advice well worth heeding. Trying to achieve too much in too short a time will only lead to you constantly disappointing yourself, as you fall short of your expectations.
But know where you’re headed – There’s those who take things slow and steady, and then there’s those who lack ambition. Don’t fall into the latter category; those small steps all need to be driving you towards your end goal.
Use the people around you – We’re all for blocking out unhelpful negativity, but not at the cost of filtering out constructive advice as well. Don’t try and go it alone; surround yourself with a reliable team, and then be prepared to listen to their advice. See your friends, business partners, and advisers as part of your toolbox for success.
Be open minded – Things rarely pan out as we expect. Circumstances will change, and the successful entrepreneur must be prepared react to them accordingly, rather than remaining rigidly fixated on an outdated plan of action.
Don’t fear failure – According to Mark Zuckerberg “The biggest risk is not taking any risk” – and who are we to argue? Taking risks, and full responsibility for the possible consequences (good and bad) is all part of the journey.
Accept that you will have to make sacrifices – Starting a business is not a part-time job. The time commitment required can take its toll on all aspects of your life; from your hobbies to your relationships. Prepare yourself for this, and spend the precious time you do have on what (and who) you truly value.
Never settle – The man who is satisfied with a second best is unlikely to make the history books. Nurture your competitive spirit, keep your sights on the top of the podium, and use others’ success to motivate you to go one step further.
Uphold your principles – Be realistic, but not at the cost of cutting corners and throwing your morals out the window. Speaking your mind when it matters, and committing to your word, will mean that the foundations of your business will hold strong throughout the tests that time throws at it.
Put your money where your mouth is – Remarkable ideas aren’t so hard to come by, but people who are willing to pull them off are. And, even rarer are those willing to take a chance on funding. But that’s where you should seek out companies willing to take a gamble on your enterprise, who offer funding and bursaries – like Huawei.
Not only do the pioneering Chinese brand produce some of the best tech for start-ups, they have also recently launched a bursary to help British entrepreneurs achieve their full potential. The Make It Possible Bursary will see £30,000 made available for individuals to follow their ambition later this year, and forms part of Huawei’s ‘I Am What I Do’ campaign which aims to inspire creativity and encourage people to use technology to build their fledgling businesses.