By: Robert Dickie III, President Crown Financial Ministries.
In a sluggish economy, if your New Year's resolution is to find a dream job, it may be time to consider whether it's time to start your own business, noted Crown President, Robert Dickie III. In a national op-ed, Dickie noted that avoiding some pitfalls could make a difference between creating a successful start-up or becoming a statistic.
Chance of survival for a start-up offers an entrepreneur some hope, Dickie noted. While 25 percent fail in the first year, about 60 percent of start-ups make it three years while about 35 percent last to 10, according to studies by the U.S. Department of Labor Statistics and the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. The rest can fail for as many reasons as there are people involved or break through the pack to long-term success.
"Three, often-ignored elements in that unique chemical equation that becomes a company can blow up entrepreneurs' dreams for lack of serious consideration," said Dickie, an experienced small-business entrepreneur. "Untrustworthy Partners, Delayed Launch and Mission Mishmash are corrosive to day-to day-operations and require strategic attention."
Untrustworthy Partners Strong contracts cannot protect anyone from poor character in their partner. People too often ignore serious red flags in a potential partner, blinded by their contacts or a unique skill set, only to find that their business partner's personal issues have become a corporate liability.
"Getting the right business partner is as important as choosing the right spouse," observed Dickie. "No matter what business you're in, all business revolves around relationships, from partners to customers."
Delayed Launch Too many start-ups stay too long in the discussion, white-board, dreaming stage under the guise of "planning for success" with a failure to launch. Everything doesn't have to be perfect to get to work. While this might seem counter-intuitive, the fact is if someone beats you to the market place, his or her sales become your loss.
Mission Mishmash Lack of strategic focus results in too many new businesses crushed under the weight of unmet expectations from customers. Trying to be all things to all people is a recipe for disaster. Far too often start-up entrepreneurs don't know how to say NO. Not every sale is a good sale and not every customer is a good customer.
"In this emerging economy, the endangered species of 'company man' cared for from hiring day to retirement has been replaced with life-style entrepreneurs who must consider all their skills and opportunities without that corporate safety net," noted Dickie. "While taking a leap of faith in starting a business might not suit everyone, it's worth the risk when compatible people take a flexible plan and work to serve customers who find value in their service."
One of Crown Ministries' goals is to equip and encourage entrepreneurs and support business leaders who are leading and developing their businesses for the Kingdom. Crown has been blessed to serve the global business community for many years with Larry Burkett's best-selling Business by the Book and the associated seminars.
The ministry is expanding and building a robust outreach to business leaders. If you are serving the business community in a ministry capacity or are a professional or consultant in the business world, we invite you to join Crown's upcoming free Webinar - "Serving the Business Community" which will be held on January 11th at 9:00 p.m. EST.
If you have a friend or an associate you think would be interested in joining, please feel free to invite them. It is amazing how God is using business leaders across the world for His divine purposes. And, we are excited for you to hear more about this and the opportunities ahead as Crown unveils the business outreach for 2014 and beyond.
For more information on tools for business start-ups, go to: www.Crownbiz.com