Father's Day: Entrepreneurship advice from a father to his daughter
Entrepreneurship is a funny business (pun intended). ‘Risk-taker’ and ‘innovator’ are terms now synonymously used with a successful entrepreneur. But what is entrepreneurship?
Entrepreneurship is a process where you constantly learn, unlearn and relearn most skills you've acquired until that point. It is about seeing opportunities where none seem to exist, and it is about solving problems that seem unsolvable to an experienced eye.
Grit and spirit to keep you going
The number-one factor in a successful entrepreneur is grit. And accompanying grit is spirit. They must possess the resolve and determination to carry on towards their goal despite the many obstacles that will mark their path.
An entrepreneur tells a tale of resilience and perseverance while walking the road to success.
Entrepreneurship is like playtime
Owning a business can give you a sense of freedom, much like playtime. The experience of planning and building your business, and watching it grow, is like building towers with lego blocks or creating a beautiful picture with oddly shaped jigsaw puzzle pieces.
Keep up with changing times
When you are an entrepreneur, you are like a child running wild in a playground with an array of swings, slides, and other pieces of equipment. However, the catch is that these elements keep evolving with every passing day, asking you to develop along with them. If you don't, you will fail at completely utilising playtime.
A cardinal rule is never assuming everything around you to be constant. The world turns in an instant, and it is critical for your business to match this change with equal rapidity, to keep evolving.
It is essential to revel in the ability to learn and update your skillset, and reshape your business to a world that is changing at lightning speed.
Take a page from the past
While dynamism is vital, learning from the past is also crucial. We may have left the past behind us, but the past never leaves us behind. History is known to repeat itself, and these patterns repeat themselves, albeit slightly disguised and wearing a new skin.
Losing your beginner's eye means losing the very advantage you have over the others.
Solve problems creatively
Taking risks, passionate, patient and a hard worker all define a successful entrepreneur. But they are also creative problem-solvers who strive to realise their visions by coming up with dynamic solutions.
Karl Duncker's "Candle Problem" is a test of creative problem-solving. It was developed to challenge the "functional fixedness," a cognitive bias making it unable to use familiar objects in novel, unique ways.
The subjects were given a candle and a box of thumbtacks. The challenge was to attach the candle to the wall with the tacks. The participants tried to fix the candle directly to the wall with the thumbtacks or stick it to the walls by melting it. Not many thought of using the box as a candleholder.
The core of being an entrepreneur is to understand the complex web of problems and build a dedicated focus to solve them.
Always have a support system
Always remember the two pillars of entrepreneurship - question everything, listen to everything. As entrepreneurs, we need to question the status quo constantly, and we need to listen to our teams, our peers, and our customers. An entrepreneur can do little without a staff that supports their dreams and visions.
From strategic business planning to crisis management, an entrepreneur with a supportive team can be up for any and every challenge coming their way.
Lastly, the thread that holds it all together - have fun! Because being an entrepreneur is a commitment that is only worthy if we wholeheartedly enjoy it. A genuine passion for solving the world's problems only comes with a smile on your face. So never forget to smile and rethink the solution to the problem you set out to solve.
(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)