Inside Out Approach To Entrepreneurship, Part 3, Check Your Readiness

October 9, 2008 by  

How do you know if you are ready to jump?

So you carved out your niche from what you love and polished it to a marketable products or services. Now you have the basic idea of what kind of business you will be in. But how do you know if you are ready to leave your corporate job and become an entrepreneur?

There are things you can check to objectively evaluate your readiness. For this, I’ve already written the e-workbook 7 Check Points For Aspiring Entrepreneurs, so I’ll just do a quick review of that book in this post. Then there is the inner knowing, the critical sense of readiness.

Don’t sabotage your aspiration with perfectionism

There is one thing I want to emphasize before we move ahead, however. It’s about perfectionism. When you are caught up in perfectionism, you are likely to say one of the following two things (or both) to procrastinate:

  1. “But I’m not ready yet. There are more I need to learn about this niche. If I’m starting my own business, I want to be the best, and I’m not there yet . . .”
  2. “(Even though you have a clear plan or picture of your future business), but I don’t know if my plan is good enough. There may be things I have not considered . . .”

The truth is you don’t need to be the best to start a business. You need to be good at it, of course, to the point it makes sense people pay for your service or products, and it’s important you are committed for improvement, but you don’t need to be the best.

Starbucks don’t offer the best coffee. They may say so, but that is just their marketing. I know much better coffee. But I still go to Starbucks often because I like the atmosphere there. Did Microsoft perfect its technology before launching to sell their software? Did you buy their stuff anyway? Same with service industry. Is you doctor the best? Maybe not even in the small community you live in. How about your hairdresser?

Later, when we talk about marketing, we will be talking about what home-based business marketer Naomi Dunford calls USP (Unique Selling Proposition). No, I’m not going to repeat what she already taught you, so if you are not familiar about this concept of how to differentiate you from the crowd, please check out that post and maybe the rest of her Marketing School series. What I want to say here is “I’m the best.” is NOT an effective differentiater, so right here and now, you need to be heading to high quality and uniqueness, not the impossible conceited status of the best-ness.

And you can never foresee and prepare for all the challenges you will have in your business. You and your business are to grow through the challenges. You can’t have a perfect business plan and be done with it. Commitment for improvement is far more important.

How to check your readiness

I think the best way is to talk it out. Get a trusted partner who would give you honest feedbacks, not just nice compliments. You may want to hire a business coach – it’s a good investment compared to crashing a new business due to poor preparation. Again, be sure to get a coach who knows what it is like to start a new (probably home based) business and who is honest and has integrity.

Then, talk about your plan. If you find yourself hesitating to talk about certain aspects of your plan, that is a good indication that part needs further work.

My $2.95 mini e-workbook offers a lot of questions you can use in this dialogue in the following seven areas:

  1. Motivation: The power of strong and sustainable motivation
  2. Strengths and Weaknesses as Entrepreneur: How to realize the strengths that often go ignored
  3. The Market: Understanding the market and its needs
  4. Vision: The big picture of the business and its owner
  5. Team Building: Strengthening the business by building a winning team
  6. Risk Management: The biggest difference between an employee and entrepreneur
  7. The Money Challenge: Testing the market and planning the cashflow

Be sure you are not “escaping”

In the first section “Motivation” of that workbook, I discuss the difference between moving toward your goals and dreams and moving away from what you loathe. This is important. If you want to escape, your goal is achieved the minute you step out the company building. It is not a sustainable motivation. If your motivation is all about escaping, you are not ready for a big adventure like starting a new business.

The inner knowing of readiness

I personally did this step really “wrong”, by the way. Sure, I studied and contemplated, but in the end, I basically just stepped out. No matter how much you prepare, there comes a moment you have to make a decision, and that comes as a quiet inner knowing. I knew I had to start a new life, so I did.

Please also read this article about money and abundance that supplements this post.
Or read on to Part 4 of this series.

If you like this article, you might enjoy my eBook on spiritual entrepreneurship. Click here for free, immediate download

Do you find this blog inspiring?

Please check About page to learn more about this blog and the author, Akemi Gaines.


14 Responses to “Inside Out Approach To Entrepreneurship, Part 3, Check Your Readiness”

  1. Inside Out Approach To Entrepreneurship, Part 1, Find The Niche | Yes to Me on October 9th, 2008 9:32 am

    [...] Check your readiness. [...]

  2. Davina on October 9th, 2008 2:13 pm

    Hi Akemi. This is so bang on! I found myself nodding all the way through. “Don’t sabotage your aspiration with perfectionism”. Man, do I understand that. An excellent post. Just downloaded the ebook :-) Thanks!

    Davinas last blog post..Thanks, It Means The World To Me

  3. Andrea Hess|Intuition In Business on October 10th, 2008 6:20 am

    I don’t think anyone ever feels “ready.” I have to say, I’m a fan of the gradual transition … there’s nothing wrong with doing a corporate job part-time (those jobs do exist) and building up a business gradually. We don’t really get to know our business until we’re actually IN it. That’s when the learning really starts.

    It goes along with your point on perfectionism … it doesn’t have to be all or nothing.

  4. akemi on October 10th, 2008 9:18 am

    Thank you. I feel humbled you buying my e-workbook.

    It’s so important to put our hands on and start doing what we like in any small way. Looking at something (like entrepreneurship) from the outside is not the same with being in it.
    Having said that, I think there is a point for most people that they just have to make their mind and jump. Or to cut that umbilical cord. Before and after that point is significantly different, even when they were trying things out gradually.

  5. Cath Lawson on October 11th, 2008 12:05 pm

    Hi Akemi – brilliant post. Some people prevent themselves from starting a business, because they’re trying to be perfect first. It’s madness – you can always improve as you go alone. Ditto what Naomi says about having a USP – well I don’t know what she actually said as I haven’t read it – but she always gives good advice.

    And having a USP is so important. If you don’t have anything to compete on, you just become a commodity. Even better if you can come up with a USP that is not easily copied.

    Congratulations on the mini-ebook too – another fab idea, which will increase your earnings per customer and allow you to keep in contact with them.

    But one last thing – where is Gratitude Friday? I look forward to seeing what you are buying every week. Your ideas are v inspiring.

  6. Cath Lawson on October 11th, 2008 12:07 pm

    Hi Akemi – don’t know what went wrong but the last two paragraphs have been swapped around. Maybe you have a ghost in your comments section, or a poltergeist?

  7. akemi on October 11th, 2008 12:41 pm

    Hi Cath,
    I fixed your first comment.
    I don’t like having ghosts around me or my blog — I will smudge them.
    Gratitude Friday will be back next week — I just have to switch to biweekly schedule not because I have less gratitude but there are just so much to do!

  8. Tom Volkar / Delightful Work on October 16th, 2008 2:11 pm

    This is especially good advice since perfection is so subjective and can seldom be nailed down anyway.

    “If you find yourself hesitating to talk about certain aspects of your plan, that is a good indication that part needs further work.” I like this too. It’s a great tip off that you haven’t thought things out.

    Tom Volkar / Delightful Works last blog post..Finding Your Path to a Successful Business Startup

  9. akemi on October 16th, 2008 6:37 pm

    Yep, I guess basically what a coach does is to let the person notice what he is hesitating and resisting so that he can find his own solutions. Thank you for your comment.

  10. Sharon Wilson on October 17th, 2008 9:20 am

    I have come to learn that the best coach in an entrepreneur’s life is one person – themselves! When you can accept yourself and begin to rely on your own inner team you will begin to be more successful in business and life.

  11. akemi on October 17th, 2008 11:20 am

    It’s wonderful you have the self love and confidence! And we have so much in common — I checked your website and see you are into spiritual healing and growth, too.
    Welcome to Yes to Me and I hope to see you around more.

  12. Inside Out Approach To Entrepreneurship, Part 2, Polish Your Niche | Yes to Me on October 17th, 2008 6:47 pm

    [...] Are you finding a niche you can market?  Then read on to Part 3. [...]

  13. Kristy Roth on October 25th, 2008 6:43 pm

    Akemi- You hit the nail on the head with this one! This is exactly why I haven’t been marketing myself like I should be, because I feel I do not know enough about the things I want to coach on! I had many discussions with Tom about this during our coaching sessions! What a great coach he is!

  14. akemi on October 25th, 2008 7:43 pm

    Good to hear Tom is helping you.