Entrepreneurial Lessons to be learnt from “Real Business Disasters”
Opting to start a business is more or less taking chances with your investment, sometimes unforeseen events happen in business without prior warning. Entrepreneurs can take precautionary measures against theft, fire accident etc. by opting for insurance. But, there are many other unforeseen events which a business person cannot anticipate.
These situations may be very hard to face but, sometimes these disasters become blessings in disguise. These situations force entrepreneurs to rethink and expand in the process. Below mentioned are some of the lessons that some entrepreneurs had learnt that helped them move forward and achieve success.
- Along With Quality Product Marketing Skills Are Also Required
If one is under the impression that a quality product is all you need to get the customers, sorry this assumption is proven wrong. An Entrepreneur had a hard time marketing his products and growing the business without marketing skills. Then he found out that a good product alone will not work.
He improved his marketing skills to some extent and then he partnered with someone who had great marketing skills, and this has proven fruitful. So, lesson number one, “along with a quality product, marketing skills are also necessary to take the product into the people, and when the balance is achieved in these two aspects success is assured”.
- Welcome Changes
As the quote goes ‘change is the only thing that is constant in life’ this applies to business too. Once a young entrepreneur wanted to start a business with a partner, everything was organised and plans were laid out accordingly. But, at the last moment the supposed partner backed off from the business in the last moment and the entrepreneur had to start alone his journey in the business world.
What he found out later was that he could efficiently manage the whole thing on his own without any help or partnership. In the beginning, it wasn’t easy to manage the whole thing, but later he ended up realising that it saved him a lot of time, money and headaches at the end of the day.
He felt very grateful for the change that has come in the form of blessing in disguise. Here we come to lesson number two “be ready to welcome changes and embrace them, only then you will know how they have uplifted your life”.
- Taking Firm Stand on Payment
An entrepreneur started his first business and had one client that would not pay his bill, after chasing him for months together one day he just vanished. The lesson that the entrepreneur had learnt from this incident was that “you must ask for and take payment before starting a project. If the client disagrees with this condition then you should think that that work is not fit to be taken up”.
- Keep Exploring New Skills, New Partnerships and Keep Expanding
It happened so with a long-standing company that their vendors terminated the agreement within short notice. And in the other situations, the employed staff had no sufficient skills and in their place, new people were to be hired to keep the operations going smooth.
The lesson that the company had learned from the experience is that “One should constantly explore new working relationships and partnerships ; One should not be overly dependent on only one vendor or employee”. When you do so you put yourself at risk and the other person has a chance to decide the terms.
There is no doubt that long term partnerships and loyalty are very important for success but, one cannot be under the false assumption that things, persons and situations will remain the same forever.
- Communication with customers should be an on-going Process
A company once made some changes to one of its products and they received a large number of negative reviews. Later they came to realize that there was a communication gap and they had to work at a greater pace to keep the people updated about the changes that are happening.
It was a difficult and draining task in the beginning but once they made people aware of why they had to make the changes and how they would benefit from the changes they got better feedback and could overcome the problem.
The lesson learnt from the situation “whenever you are making some changes be prepared for negative feedback, equip yourself with all the information that is necessary to explain why you had to make the change and clearly state how the consumers will benefit from the change”.
- Invest More Time in Learning
Two companies were started their journey at the same time but one company surpassed the other within a short period and started making profits leaving the other behind. The success of the other company compelled the first one to introspect and know where they were lacking and where the other was scoring. This process helped them to figure out where they stand and what they need to do to stay ahead and achieve success.
The lesson learnt in this situation is “one does not achieve success overnight and needs to invest time to introspect, learn new things and keep improving” the saying ‘slow and steady wins the race’ should be adopted here.
There are many businesses and many business owners each one has its unique share of experiences in the process and these experiences when shared with others become guidelines for newcomers and help them go in the right direction.