Running any business is challenging. Each has its own special nuances, criteria and factors determining success or failure … or at least increasing the odds of one or the other. But, no matter what business you are in, there are a few simple truths you need to accept. Ironically, some of these truths are routinely ignored by newbie CEOs, cocky with inexperience and convinced they know better. Avoid them – and those people – at all costs.
First, love what you do.
Notice I didn’t say “do what you love.” That’s stupid. You can’t always do what you love, and there may be no way for you to achieve your dreams by monetizing your hobbies. The better approach is to work hard enough and smart enough to have the time and resources you need to do what you love. To make that happen, though, it’s best to love what you do. Find something that gets you where you want to be and embrace it. If there are aspects you aren’t in love with – or that you suck at – outsource or delegate. Leave yourself with the choice bits.
Understand your goals.
Some people just want to be “rich” or “successful.” Those are not goals. Those are dreams. Goals are specific. What is it you really want? If you don’t know, unplug and go find out. Knowing what you want gets you out of bed in the morning.
Be practical … and radical.
There is time and a place for both approaches to business. Understanding when to be either and when one or the other is a liability will take you far in business. Getting them mixed up will torpedo your plans.
Understand the restraints.
Every industry and every business has specific rules and regulations. There may be a gray area here and there, but if you don’t know what the rules are, or you don’t want to know, you will eventually become your own worst enemy. Don’t build something on sand only to watch the IRS or the local PD wash it all away. Be wise … not just smart.
So, you’re sitting there nodding your head. Great. But do you really believe any of this? If so, you would be doing it … right?
Roman Temkin is a real estate developer with a background in entrepreneurship.