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For Successful Entrepreneurs Job One Is Getting Started-Not Getting It Perfect

by: Geoff Ficke

The times are obviously difficult economically for many people, companies and organizations. There is uncertainty about what the future holds. Many of us are worried about the “new normal” and exactly where we fit into these norms, if we could define them. There is a certain paralysis of action that accompanies change and uncertainty. This is to be understood.

For entrepreneurs, however, nothing much ever changes. The optimism that must be hard wired into their constitutions is omnipresent. Real entrepreneurs, those that “do”, not just dream, see opportunity behind every tree and under every rock. Most importantly, they act while others strategize, stargaze and pontificate.

We review hundreds of entrepreneurial opportunities every year in our marketing consulting business. But only a hand-full of these ever become functioning commercial entities. At the end of each calendar year, we review every presentation file we analyzed over the previous 12 months. We are always struck by how many excellent consumer products, concepts or services we saw and how few actually move beyond the talking, dreamy, gauzy muddle of the old Texas axiom, “all hat and no cattle”.

The most distinguishing factor we see that separates a successful entrepreneur from the dreamer is the ability to simply get started. I see much better than I hear. Words are cheap. Action is dear. The “do’er” is driven to get started in pursuit of their goals and aspirations. The time is always fine for them to get into gear and move their project ahead.

Procrastination is a trait that all entrepreneurial pretenders (wannabe’s) perfect. They are always waiting for the perfect alignment of the stars. Excuses abound. Investment is coming. Next year will be better, because……. My wife needs to get her degree before we start. It’s fishing (or hunting) season. A friend is going to make me a prototype when he takes vacation. Self-imposed limitations are endless.

No matter the economic climate, the best time to start a business is when you have a viable commercial idea. Down markets actually offer wonderful opportunities for entrepreneurs with fresh ideas that improve, enhance or change product performance. Fresh features and benefits and novel products are always welcome in our vast consumer product marketplace.