Have you ever wanted to start your own business? Before you take the leap into entrepreneurship, read our list of 11 things every entrepreneur should know.

1. Don’t get ahead of yourself

If business is going great, it may be tempting to want to reward yourself with a new car or a nice vacation. Don’t do it. If your business is your only source of income, you want to make sure you have a pretty good chunk of money saved up before you start spending it on “fun” things.

2. Monetize your free time

When you start a business while you are working full-time, it can feel like you have no “free time” left. If you feel this way, take what you love to do and turn it into your business! This way you won’t feel like you are giving up your free time anymore, and instead you’ll be expanding it.

3. Surround yourself with other entrepreneurs.

Find other entrepreneurs who have been in your same shoes before. These connections are perfect resources for you to learn from, and they can help you stay motivated!

4. Quit your day job as soon as it is reasonable

It can be so tempting to jump in head first, quit your day job and hit the ground running with that new business idea of yours. This is a bad idea. It takes weeks, months, and even years to build up a business. If you have no income to rely on besides what you are making from your start-up, you will be in a bad spot. Stick around at your day job until you are making enough income to cover both business expenses and personal expenses.

5. Execute your ideas better

Imagine this. You have an incredible, new idea for a product. You go to Google and find out dozens of other people already have this same idea. Don’t let this hold you back! When it comes to business ideas, the only thing that matters is how they are executed. Evaluate your competition and identify your competitive advantage. You don’t have to come up with a brand-new idea, you just have to find where you can do things better and more efficiently than others.

6. Don’t be afraid to stand out!

When it comes to entrepreneurship, there is no one-size-fits-all approach for business success. The most successful entrepreneurs in the world have one thing in common: nothing. And this is why they are so successful! Be yourself, and don’t worry about fitting a mold. Being different is good. It is what will make you stand out from everyone else.

7. Find your brand and own it

Differentiating your business purely by adjusting price or quality is going to make it impossible for your business to dominate in an already saturated market. Instead, focus on developing a great, genuine brand. A brand that your customers will trust and love. Have the kind of brand that will encourage people to keep coming back to you, instead of your competitors.

8. Get ready to work hard

If you go into entrepreneurship expecting to work less than your day job, you’re going to be very disappointed. Sure, entrepreneurship may allow you a more flexible schedule, but that doesn’t mean you’ll work less. It means you’ll work more! Remember that entrepreneurship is hard work, and you need to be willing to accept that if you want to succeed.

9. If it feels like work, you’re doing it wrong

You’ve probably heard the quote from Confucius, “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life”. As an entrepreneur, this couldn’t be truer. When you start a business, make sure you determine what you are passionate about and center your business around that. While it is still work, it shouldn’t “feel” like work or else you are doing something wrong.

10. Stop talking about it and just do it

You can talk about your business ideas forever, but you will never accomplish anything or get anywhere with them unless you stop talking about it and just do it!

11. If you’re not scared, then you’re doing it wrong

Entrepreneurship is scary. It just is. Perhaps it’s a fear of the unknown or the fear that people won’t like your product or service. Whatever it is, it’s okay to be scared. Actually, you’re probably doing something wrong if you aren’t scared. The best way to grow and be successful as an entrepreneur is to get out of your comfort zone and do something that terrifies you.

We could talk all day about things you should know as an entrepreneur. This list just covers the bare essentials. If you want to learn even more, we recommend that you register for one of our events!

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