By Phillip Chichoni
The signs are there everywhere. Ask anyone who owns or runs any enterprise and they will tell you the same story: it’s tough times for business. The only thing we can discuss now is how to cope and survive.
Have you ever thought that difficult times are a necessary learning process before you can succeed as an entrepreneur? The same like when you fell a few times before you mastered the skills of riding a bicycle? Or how you struggled to master algebra or a foreign language at school?
Henry Ford’s businesses failed and left him flat broke five times before he founded Ford Motor Company. R.H. Macy started seven businesses and failed at each one before he found the right combination. Soichiro Honda was turned down as an engineer at Toyota, was jobless for quite a while then created a scooter company that went broke before he finally created Honda Motor Company. Harland Sanders and his famous Colonial Sanders Chicken recipe was rejected by 1,009 restaurants and hundreds of bankers before he finally turned the corner and made his recipe for business cook. Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper editor and started quite a few businesses that ended in bankruptcy before he created his world famous amusement parks. Yes, even Bill Gates has gone broke. Bill’s first company was called Traf-O-Data. Many now mega-successful business people have stumbled and hit the ground a few times before they figured out how to run effective and profitable organizations. Here are three traits of the successful business person who is faced with uncertain economic challenges.
I think the decades of a controlled economy robbed many entrepreneurs of the tenacity required to survive amidst tough competition and operating on frugal budgets. There were not enough motives for innovation. Most of our business models had become antiquated and we were not competitive enough for a globalized market.
So the right thinking is on what are we learning from these hardships that will help us grow as entrepreneurs and as human beings?
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