Have you ever thought about starting a business and decided against it because you don’t have enough money, time, or experience? Maybe someone told you that most small business fail or that it’s not the right time to go into business because the economy is so bad? Unfortunately, there are a lot of business myths floating around out there and they often keep potential entrepreneurs from pursuing their ideas and following their dreams. Don’t let this happen to you. To help clear a few key points up, here are five of the most common business myths that may be holding you back.
Business Myth #1 – You Have to Have Money to Make Money
I, for one, had absolutely no money to invest in my business when I started. And it’s a good thing I didn’t. The sad fact is that money can actually make us stupid when it comes to business. If we have too much of it, our first instinct becomes spending it to solve problems instead of taking a few extra minutes to consider other viable alternatives (which are often less expensive and more effective!).
You don’t have to dip into your savings or spend a dime out of pocket to start your business.
What you really should do is start small and work with what you already have. This is called bootstrapping and it will literally allow you to start a business with zero money down.
Business Myth #2 – Starting a Business Will Take All Your Time
This is a big concern people. They’ve heard all the horror stories about people working day and night just to make ends meet. Maybe this has happened before, but it certainly isn’t the norm. It certainly hasn’t been the case for me – at all.
As I’ve grown my business, I’ve found a number of great ways to automate my tasks so that I’m still making money even when I’m not actually working. And you will too. You’ll also find that you can charge more and more for your services as you progress, meaning you can work less to compensate.
In fact, it possible to run a business and still work 40+ hours a week. I did this for six months before I decided to pursue my online retail business full-time!
Business Myth #3 – You Need a Business Degree
Business degrees aren’t everything and you certainly don’t need one to be a successful business owner. In fact, most of the successful entrepreneurs I know don’t have one.
It’s more important to capitalize on skills and interests you already have. For example, I love to read and write, so last year I started a freelance writing business. I placed my focus on finding potential clients and providing quality services instead of the fancy business mechanics you would learn in school – many of which wouldn’t apply anyway.
Business Myth #4 – Starting a Business if Risky
This is probably my favorite myth because it’s just SO WRONG. Business owners are usually incredibly averse to taking risks, actually. Sure, we entrepreneurs are always trying new things and pushing the envelope, but it’s more about taking calculated steps and making small bets on ourselves than it is diving headfirst into something we know nothing about.
When you implement smart strategies and practice discretion with your finances, there’s very little need for risk at all. For example, you could start your businesses as a side hustle while still working your full-time job. This is both effective and safe, as it allows you to test the market before depending solely on your business for income. Now add in the fact that you won’t spend a dime out of pocket because you’re smart and plan to bootstrap your business. The only thing you risk a little wasted time if things don’t work out.
Business Myth #5 – There’s a Secret to Overnight Success
Sometimes it isn’t other people who dissuade us from starting a business; sometimes our own high and unrealistic expectations are what does us in. That’s why it’s really important to realize that there isn’t some top-secret key to overnight success. Anyone who tells you differently is just out to get your money.
Starting and managing a business is hard work and you have to be willing to put in the effort to make it successful. No one else can do it for you. So if you’re serious about becoming an entrepreneur, start by accepting that it’s going to take time and that there will undoubtedly be some bumps along the way. This will help you steer clear of those unrealistic expectations, which only breed discouragement, disappointment and, ultimately, failure.