Common Challenges Faced by Entrepreneurs and How to Tackle Them
Over the years, it has been shown that entrepreneurs are the ones who build cities and economies. A lot of the successful innovations that we enjoy today are products of entrepreneurs who decided to contribute their quota in making our world a better place. Expectedly, a lot of these entrepreneurs make up the world rich list as they have amassed fortune out of their different business ventures. This outcome has motivated a lot of individuals to start considering entrepreneurship as the easiest way to a happy-ever-after life. Also, as an alternative to public institutions, many governments all over the world have been encouraging their citizens to embrace entrepreneurship as a means to create more employment opportunities. Be that as it may, entrepreneurship is a road less traveled because it is not as glamorous as most people think it is.
Some persons have the illusion that entrepreneurship affords you the time to play around since you are your own ‘boss, and not accountable to anyone. Just to burst your bubbles, entrepreneurship requires more discipline, diligence, and grit. It is not for everyone. It is also not a get-rich-quick scheme. It is about solving problems, creating value and making money while at it. There are many times an entrepreneur feels like quitting and some do quit.
However, it is a rewarding venture and an adventurous journey with several challenges. If you are considering to tow the part of entrepreneurship, find below top 5 challenges entrepreneurs face, so you better prepare for them.
One of the biggest challenge an entrepreneur will face is being able to provide a product or solution that the market wants. True, entrepreneurs are problem solvers. However, being able to see and understand the problem is one thing, then proffering a viable and feasible solution to that problem is another. This means that, an entrepreneur can see problems, identify market gaps, uncover opportunities but may still find it difficult coming up with the perfect solution or service to clog these gaps. That is why we have a backlog of failed products and services in the market.
Design thinking is one way entrepreneurs can tackle this challenges. Design-thinking helps you understand a problem as an entrepreneurs, and equips you with frameworks and mindsets that will enable you provide human centered solutions that are fit for market. Get this right. The moment the product is wrong, the entrepreneur will struggle a lot and might not survive it.
As an entrepreneur, one of the biggest challenge you will face is finding the right people to join your team. Remember, that for most entrepreneurs, the idea is to start lean. Which means you don’t have enough funds to hire the best hands and you can also not afford to settle for just anybody. It’s a big challenge especially when you consider the fact that you are competing with established big organizations for the signature and time of these Ivy League grads, MBA executives and industry experts.
People contribute significantly to the success or failure of an enterprise, therefore, the entrepreneur is faced with that herculean task of finding the right people who will be willing to either work for free or take a pay cut. Not many people fancy the idea of joining a young start-up.
In a bid to deal with this challenge, entrepreneurs can leverage on associations, networks and communities to find people who can buy into their vision and are willing to delay gratification. Entrepreneurs can also explore alternative means of compensation like bartering options as a way to incentivize quality people to join their team.
Funding & Cash-flow
Access to adequate funding is also a bid challenge many entrepreneurs face. Ideas are a dime a dozen, it is the one that hits the market first that people patronize. Yes, it has been said that “you don’t need money, you need an idea”. As factual as that maxim is, an entrepreneur gets to a point in the entrepreneurial journey where finance is necessary to get the idea, product off the shelf and hit the market. Not many people readily have access to this funds.
However, successful entrepreneurs don’t give up. Three types of money are available for the entrepreneur to utilize namely; Debt (Loan), Equity and Grant. Entrepreneurs can prepare themselves and go after any of the above mentioned type of money. It won’t be easy, but a lot of people too have been able to raise financing through any of those sources.
This problem is one of the reasons why many entrepreneurs of today find it difficult to access financing or attract investment. A lot of entrepreneurs lack the discipline to enforce due diligence in their day-to-day operations of their business. Because most times, it is a young business, the entrepreneur doesn’t enforce proper documentations, keep accounting and tax records and adhere to regulatory requirements.
A lot of entrepreneurs find it difficult adapting to change fast. Change is very constant and it can come at any time. It can come in the form of new government policy, changing consumer behavior, market trends, internal politics, or natural effects like pandemics, war, disasters etc.
Many enterprise went under because of their inability to respond positively to change. This challenge is also not insurmountable. Entrepreneurs must brace up for change. Learn how to respond to it and manage it. Every business has its peculiar change drivers like lack of funding, loss of key team members or strategic partners/clients, and so on. Even though a lot of these changes cannot be predicted, but the entrepreneur needs to be prepared for it.
Do not let your heart fail you. Entrepreneurship comes with a lot of challenges, but so does any other worthwhile venture. There has been many success stories of entrepreneurs who made a significant difference. You too can. You only need to understand that it is a journey that requires passion, grit, focus, discipline and dynamism.
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