10 Tips on Becoming a Successful Entrepreneur


Oh, the freedom of being an entrepreneur! You can be your own boss, wake up whenever you want- it’s your business, you can do what you want. However, there are a few things you should consider while starting your entrepreneurial journey. We’ve compacted a list of advice on becoming a successful entrepreneur, just for you.

  1. Deflate yourself if you’re too “gassed up.”

No one wants to work with a Kanye West-personality unless you are actually Kanye West.  Be confident, but think about what’s best for your mission, staff and customers first.

  1. Keep it simple.

It’s very tempting want to create a “lifestyle” or “brand” and launch clothing line with a blog, TV channel, music label, and all of the works. The reality of it is if you disperse your attention on too many things, none will progress forward.

Keep your idea simple. What is your goal?  To sell product or service X to Y for Z profit. That is your goal.

  1. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

Plan ahead for possible unexpected turns and be prepared for the worst case scenario. Always have a plan B, C, and D for every decision, and with cash planning, have at least 3-6 months of expenses.

  1. Be originally unoriginal

There is no market validation for the “reinvented wheel.” Instead of trying to introduce something that the world hasn’t seen before, put a creative spin on a pre-existing idea that already has satisfied results.

  1. Be patient, young grasshopper. You’re broke.
  • Initially focus on ideas that could turn a quick profit and doesn’t have many start-up costs.
  • Prioritize your inventory. Focus on the necessities, and let the other things come when the money has arrived

See the internet as an advantage of being an entrepreneur right now. The internet is a cost-efficient way to could leverage your business in the beginning stages.  Focusing on social media presence and search engine optimization requires little to no money as you give your business exposure.

  1. Be Cheap

Do you need a camera, or can you partner with a photographer for a favor in return?

There are many ways to get what you need- do it the cheapest way possible. Use your resources, and “know the difference between a frivolous expense and a necessity that can be bartered, bargained for, or partnered on.”

  1. Choose you partners wisely, partna.

Although they may know everything about you, a business partner is not necessarily your best friend. Try to find someone who brings balance and new skillsets to the table. If you’re a creative, try to find an analytic mind. If you’re not good with deadlines and organization, make sure you find someone who is. You know the deal.

  1. Stop planning and make it happen.

Investors are not going to read a 50+ page business plan, and so won’t you. Consider writing paragraph answers to each of these questions, and a one-page executive summary summarizing all of these points.

Review of Market


What business are we in?

What have you accomplished so far?


Who are our competitors?

What have they done recently?


Who is your target market?

What do you think will happen next?

Strategy and exit

Strategy Goal

What do you want to achieve?

How are you going to do it?

Exit plan

How does this end, and what happens next?

  1. It’s about who you know.

It’s over said, but I cannot emphasize this enough. Use your resources. Practice your elevator pitch, make business cards, and be confident.

Remember that others also have selfish goals when they network. Don’t only think about what that person can do for you, but what you can do for that person.

  1. If it doesn’t scare you, it is not big enough. If you’re scared, man up and go for it.


Niani Tolbert

Mount Holyoke College

Revised from http://www.linkedin.com/today/post/article/20130706120742-15077789-how-to-achieve-career-independence


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