No one said that starting a business is easy. Some people have an entrepreneurial mind and a gift of turning just about anything into a successful startup while others nearly loose their minds while trying to navigate the dangerous entrepreneurial waters.
Over the last few years being an entrepreneur and having a startup became something of a trend. It’s not cool to be a lawyer anymore, or have a solid job in financing, small business is where many people seem to want to go. Kids fresh out of high school go on Dragon’s Dan to showcase their ideas and the amount of entrepreneurship workshops, networking events and venture investment seminars is at its highest.
It is easy to get inspired by success stories you can find in nearly every newspaper and magazine but what people often skip through in these stories is the true reality of how hard rough the road is getting there. There is a deep dark whole that successful people glaze over when talking about where they started. They say that the first few years are difficult, that the first year is the hardest, but very few go into the ugly details.
Not everyone who does well on Dragon’s Den actually gets the funding, and quite frankly the truth is 25% of startup business fail in the first year while venture startups fail at a higher rate of 3 out of 4.
25% of startup business fail in the first year while venture startups fail at a higher rate of 3 out of 4
Serial entrepreneurs succeed because they’ve figured out the process while new business owners often go in blind making the main reason of failure incompetence just behind lack of experience.
Knowing these statistics while seeing the influx of various “30 under 30” type of stories I realized that people are often mislead into believing that luck has a lot to do with it. I also realized, I think it’s safe to say Johnny Cupcake had a lot to do with it, that most inspirational stories are about the hardships of entrepreneurship shared by the people who’ve made it. Having a better idea of what it takes to succeed is as important, if not more, as hearing about the final success.
On that note, I would like to introduce you to a new series of stories, stories of the ups and downs of the first few years from people who have made it, nearly made it or have been noted for their bright ideas by major publications. Stories from people who started from scratch with nearly nothing but an ambitious idea and made it their own success story. Stories from founder and co-founders of all sorts of business including AutoShare, ecoATM, Frank & Oak, Sid Lee, WePopp, and more.
Starting next week I will post one story a week from successful entrepreneurs and an occasional researched advice piece. We can all learn from mistakes, successes, and practiced good habits of other people.
If you are an entrepreneur, know one, or would like to recommend one please don’t hesitate to comment or contact me directly.