Monday, July 25, 2011

The Evolution of the Entrepreneur

What does an entrepreneur endure while starting a business?  Entrepreneurs progress and advance through many different steps and stages when aspiring to open a new venture. Every entrepreneur is different, as are each of their new businesses.  Therefore, everything moves at a slightly different pace. Some companies will take years before the official launch, while others, like technology companies, will take a matter of weeks. With this being said, there are stages that every entrepreneur will undergo. 

It all starts with an ideaAnybody can have an idea.  An entrepreneur is someone who does something about it.  Oftentimes, entrepreneurs gain inspiration from something that they are passionate about. Other times, ideas seem to materialize when the entrepreneur is not necessarily looking for one. The foundation of a business is started by an idea, no matter how it is attained.  At this stage, the entrepreneur is ecstatic and cannot wait to get their idea into motion. The next steps show the evolution of the entrepreneur as they form their business. 

After brainstorming an idea, an entrepreneur next must evaluate the idea. Is there really a market for this idea? Is this idea worthy and viable? Will this business work? An entrepreneur must identify the opportunity that comes with this innovative thought. He or she must also recognize the future goal and life plan of this business idea. It is helpful to also decide the business model the entrepreneur wants to build on.

Next, the entrepreneur should develop a business plan. The entrepreneur must define what product and/or service they want to offer and how they are going to do so. From simple steps like determining a name for the new business to deciding the location of the company, the entrepreneur should map it all out. Although a complete 80-page business plan is not always necessary, written direction is essential. This can seem tedious and unnecessary to the entrepreneur, but it will be helpful in the long run.

With an idea and plan in mind, an entrepreneur must find resources to pioneer the business. And the most important resource to find is money.  No matter the size of the business, an entrepreneur is going to need capital to start it. Personal savings, family, friends, angel investors, the SBA and venture capitalists are all some options for funding depending on the type of venture and the amount needed. This can be a stressful time for the entrepreneur for many reasons.  Capital can be hard to find and paying it back can be even harder. The entrepreneur also must obtain assets such as building, land, machinery and equipment for whatever the business may be.

The entrepreneur then will use the resources obtained to implement the business plan. There is a lot of work to be done at this point. Marketing the upcoming business is key and social media is the way to go this day and age. Facebook, Twitter and an email account are critical for the soon-to-be business. Whatever the product or service that will be offered from the business must be tested over and over again to make sure there are no flaws. Employees must be hired and trained if necessary.

Once everything is in place, the business is ready to be launched!   Although it is the most exciting phase in an entrepreneur’s life, this time period will be filled with limited hours of sleep. There will be glitches and the entrepreneur will have to quickly respond effectively. If the entrepreneur is working hard, has planned well, and the market is thriving, their new business is likely to succeed.   

In the end, the entrepreneur will have an exit strategy. Defined in the original business plan, the entrepreneur will know when they want to move on to something else. Some choose to make their venture a family business to be passed down for generations, while others want to build it up and sell as fast as they can. At this time, we hope that the entrepreneur is content with their success and the hard work they put into it. 

Written by Genevieve Alander


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