Written in partnership with Digital Nod
“Everyone has ideas. Everyone thinks. The key is to execute”, says Ahmad J Azmi, a former military veteran who has successfully built multiple successful businesses. Per the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, only 1 in 5 new businesses make it past the first year. As a future founder, how can you build a business that lasts, and what are the factors you should consider before diving in?
We dissected all the right steps taken by tycoons, including Ahmad J Azmi, in the early stages of their businesses. Through their observations, we offer insights into how you can replicate the same kind of success.
Predict Market Demand
Before launching any venture, it is crucial to ask one question – Will my business offer a solution that’ll make my client’s life easier?
A way to answer that is by doing research. Market research can help you to identify the current market trends, including which products/services are in demand – and where they fall short (tip: study business reviews for better understanding). Doing this will help you strategize your sales pitch and streamline marketing efforts.
Know Your Industry
Knowing success stories in your industry isn’t just Monday motivation. Use credible sources to gather information on the leading businesses and collate their customer feedback to understand what the people like and dislike about your potential competitors. Customer dissatisfaction could be regarding anything from personalized customer service to competitive pricing.
- Suppliers: You should have a list of suppliers that match your requirements and provide good quality products/services at prices within your budget.
- Staff: Having exactly the right kind of dedicated staff that can match your passion and offer solid expertise is crucial, especially in the initial few days as you establish your presence in the market.
- As Ahmad J Azmi says, “You are as strong as your weakest member.” You can never do everything, and you needn’t have to. Build a team that you can trust fully.
- Technology: Having expert staff but not the right equipment is not ideal. Technology and tools help professionals reach their highest potential.
Work Out the Finances
Before you begin, assess your finances. A recent study shows that an estimated 98% of small businesses make no profit in the first year. Additionally, new ventures should be prepared to face failure, including theft of intellectual property and the subsequent loss of clients, increased competition, lack of resources, and so on.
“You need to always be positive, think things through, have an end goal and a plan on how you are going to get there, and then execute,” says Ahmad J Azmi.
Expand Your Network
Networking fetches recommendations from reputed names, good deals with suppliers, attracts talented employees, and sometimes even loyal customers.
Business mingling and nurturing contacts establish trust, no matter the industry. Social media has brought networking to our fingertips, making mingling easy.
Finally, start your venture with a mindset of benevolence.
To Ahmad J Azmi, his biggest success isn’t merely money but the veterans he could pull out of poverty and homelessness. His one piece of advice to entrepreneurs everywhere is – Leave a legacy of kindness, not dollars.
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