Road To Entrepreneurship
With the Covid-19 pandemic ushering in the Great Resignation, the number of aspiring entrepreneurs has increased. A recent report by the U.S. Census Bureau shows that the number of new business applications hit 5.4 million in 2021. For most people choosing an entrepreneurial path, the top motivation is dissatisfaction with corporate America.
Suppose you're thinking about joining millions of other self-employed individuals. In that case, you might wonder whether it's wise to drop everything and start your own business, especially when the world is facing an economic downturn.
You might have read many good old-fashioned stories about how people started their successful businesses in the garage. Or how they got their "bigbreak" from a lucky meeting with the right person.
What you don't often read about is the journey that people take before they get to that point and the struggles of running a company. So, in this article, I want to share my story and what I've learned from it.
Most successful entrepreneurs start by risking everything to follow one big idea. By everything, I mean what they're accustomed to, including their day jobs.
Well,I also had to forego everything, but it's not a day job because I didn't have any. It was the Brazilian life I knew, my friends, and my family in Brazil.
I decided to take a risk and fly to America to chase the American dream. I landed in California in 2005, armed with my bags and all my savings.
AlthoughI had challenges connecting with people in the new culture, I knew that this same culture had created some of the most successful entrepreneurs in the world. I knew this was where I wanted to build my new video game company, Playgig.
Every entrepreneur will tell you that success requires commitment, discipline, and, most importantly, a never-give-up attitude. For me, these were essential qualities because I had to start from scratch.
My biggest consolation was that I had some experience in the gaming industry, having led esports at Riot Games. I had sharpened my skills since I was part of pioneering the games as a service model and helping to increase the audience for the League of Legends to more than 100 million active players. But that didn’t mean my entrepreneurial journey would be smooth.
The struggles of starting a company are not always glamorous, but they are essential to the journey. Knowing this, I woke up every day and reminded myself that I would figure it out. I walked the difficult path of putting the pieces together to create something special, something that people would love and use.
I gave myself one year to make notable progress with my company. Thanks to believing in myself, I made much progress in one year.
But there was one more hurdle to overcome: a lack of capital. Venture capitalists were my biggest hope, so I knew I had to put in more work to attract their attention. Although that meant making the risky move of increasing my monthly expenses, I was confident it would pay off.
It did, and in 2021, I had found enough venture capital investors to back me in starting Playgig. It's a video game company that I love so much since it's a daily reminder of the power of believing in myself.
I'm living the American dream by being part of an industry worth over $300 billion. More importantly, I am gladI have a platform that brings people together when playing in a world full of enthralling characters.
My journey as an entrepreneur hasn't been easy, but it's been worth it. If you're thinking about starting your own company, here are some tips that might help you:
Leverage Your Expertise
Starting a company from scratch is an uphill task, and you need to leverage every opportunity you get to make it successful. A good place to start is to venture into an industry or occupation you're already familiar with. If you're eyeing an unfamiliar sector, start by acquiring expertise and some form of track record to increase your chances of success.
At some point in your entrepreneurial journey, you will find yourself in a place that requires you to show your credibility. It could be serving your customers, meeting investors, or recruiting your team. Without the necessary expertise to support your entrepreneurial goals, getting people to believe in you and your vision will be difficult.
One thing that sets entrepreneurs apart from others is their ability to take decisive action, even when it means doing things differently. Always try to find your uniqueness and use it to your advantage.
Start by looking at patterns and trends. Then ask yourself whether there's a hidden opportunity in the trend that you can exploit to change what people have been doing the same way for the longest time. If you see an opportunity, go for it and take decisive action.
Don't Expect Everyone to Support You
Not everyone will understand your entrepreneurial journey, and that's okay. Some people will think you're crazy for taking risks. Others will try to talk you out of it because they don't want to see you fail.
While the risk of failure is high, you should try to raise your spirits by focusing on why your decision to be an entrepreneur is worth it. One reason is enough to justify taking the plunge.
When people try to talk you out of it, remember your "why" and let it motivate you to keep going. The important thing is to stay focused on your goals and surround yourself with people who support your vision.
Be Prepared for Setbacks
There will be times when things don't go as planned. You will make mistakes and encounter setbacks. Learning from these experiences and using them to propel you forward is essential.
Setbacks are inevitable, but they should never stop you from moving forward. Every setback is an opportunity to learn and grow. When you encounter one, use it asa chance to improve your business model and make your company stronger.
The Bottom Line
Starting your own company is a risk, but it's a risk worth taking. If you have the passion and drive to be successful, you will find a way to make your dreams come true. Use your expertise to your advantage, take decisive action, and don't let setbacks stop you from moving forward.