TOP CHALLENGES FACED BY ENTREPRENEURS TODAY
Part of the things involved in being an entrepreneur today is preparing to face several challenges. Entrepreneurs face tough challenges that even pose a threat to the existence of the business. Sometimes, the challenges might prove rewarding depending on how well they’re tackled and if plans are made to avoid future occurrences. This is highly important when you consider how early entrepreneurs faced difficulties and were able to come up with ground breaking solutions which eventually paved way for entrepreneurs nowadays. Issues like the tough system of barter trade and coincidence of wants were mainly tackled then but it’s all different now.
The business or entrepreneurship world is a highly competitive world today. Establishing a business, meeting market demands, bettering the competition and making sure profits are achieved have basically overtaken the minds of budding entrepreneurs. But guess what? It’s all part of the process. Entrepreneurs are built to be problem solvers. To say taking on challenges and solving them is indeed a necessary duty for an entrepreneur is nothing but a fact. Even experienced entrepreneurs face challenges every day.
Unlike early entrepreneurs who didn’t have as much resources as we do now especially with the advent of technology, modern day entrepreneurs are filled with opportunities in the technological scene which can be explored to ensure they are well equipped to face some challenges like marketing. Have you ever wondered how marketing took place during the early days of entrepreneurship? Must have been difficult right? I’ll be discussing a number for these challenges faced by entrepreneurs and their corresponding solutions.
FIVE CHALLENGES FACED BY ENTREPRENEURS TODAY AND THEIR SOLUTIONS
1. LACK OF CAPITAL/INSUFFICIENT CAPITAL
For start-ups or basically any entrepreneurship venture, this is ultimately the first issue to battle with. It’s not always easy especially for someone who is inexperienced to get people to invest in a new idea that has not been tested or practiced before. This poses a huge problem as even taking loans could be a problem if you’re unable to properly convince an investor. Investors basically want to make sure the feasibility of the idea is tested before they contribute to it. No one wants to venture or invest in something that won’t bring them income or eventually fail after a couple of months.
In times when capital appear to be an issue, entrepreneurs might need to use their money or whatever saving they have. This might not allow the business to properly establish itself but it is an option that can be explored. In such cases, it is advisable to start small and set targets to be realized. Sometimes, investors are more inclined to make investments in a business that has already started or something you have been able to build with the little you have so it’s not a waste when you start small. Another option is taking loans from friends and family. This should be easier because it will come from people with whom you must’ve built a certain level of trust.
Bank loan is also another option. This might prove difficult but if you’re confident in your idea and you’re sure your idea and plan are highly attainable, then give it a go. An extra tip you can take in cases of insufficient capital is to reduce budget if you can. Take a good look at what you already plan to use the capital for and see if you can cut off some costs.
2. LACK OF EXPERIENCE
Inexperience always proves to be another challenging factor in starting up a business. Some people literally do not know anything about what they plan to do. They probably got forced into it or they try to do something because it worked for someone else. Some don’t even bother to make proper enquiry concerning the business. Now, this takes us to one quality that must be found in an entrepreneur, passion for what he/she is doing. If you don’t have passion, you’ll probably lose concentration and interest along the line.
We’re in a computer age, an era of technological advancements that keeps growing day by day, and finding a solution to this problem should not be hard. Internet has proven to be man’s best helper when in need of information so don’t hesitate to make use of it. YouTube is one platform that proves very useful to entrepreneurs. You can check videos and see how things are really done. Also, you might decide to take another approach which is advice from experts. This helps you get deeper knowledge from an experienced individual. If internet information proves ambiguous, word of mouth can be reliable when it comes from an expert.
This brings me back to my initial question about how marketing must have been done in the early days for entrepreneurs. Until the introduction of currency as a standard method of payment, individuals had to take their products to other neighborhood farms or even as far as travelling to far places to try to find someone who might be interested in what they had and was willing to give in return something the other party wanted. This must have been a very difficult owing to the fact that there were no proper means of communication like we have today. I can imagine an entrepreneur travelling as far as another town and not getting someone whose wants coincided with his.
Money proves to be in fact one of the best inventions for entrepreneurs. Imagine having to go through all that stress just to sell your product today. With money came more pronounced markets where people could gather and display their products for sale. Nowadays, the marketing is done via social media, thanks of course to technology. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and many more are available social channels where entrepreneurs can market or advertise their products to a large number of people. All that is needed is just simply signing up and fitting your strategies into each channel. Alternatively, word of mouth is yet another method. Meeting up with strangers and introducing your products to them in an enticing manner is a marketing strategy that can be implemented too though this one is quite stressful unlike the use of social media where you can just sit at home and do all the marketing for free or at a cost based on the channel.
4. TIME AND CASH FLOW MANAGEMENT
Some entrepreneurs get to be the ones that does most or all of the work in their business. This happens a lot especially during the starting phase of the business or rather when it is a sole proprietorship venture. This can be very stressful and in many ways end up wearing out the entrepreneur. The issue with time and cash flow is always with decision making. If poor decisions are made, there will be consequences and these consequences at time might eventually bring the business loss. For many start-ups today, cash flow is highly important to the survival of a business venture. Entrepreneurs who start with a minimal amount of capital might struggle to pay some bills that might arise if they are unable to get funds out of the business. In some cases, these individuals might also get paid late depending on the service rendered and this usually doesn’t help the business.
Like I’ve mentioned before, planning is key, so in issues pertaining to this, individuals should properly budget funds and also plan their schedule properly. It’s not always easy to run a business single handedly but how you cope and work out strategies to help you solve it defines your role as an entrepreneur. Plan your time well and leave out things less important. For better cash flow management, set up a plan that determines how money will be spent. In cases where individuals get paid late, always ask for a down payment.
It always proves to be a tough task to stay motivated especially when the business is not hitting its goals or where there are back to back losses. A business one has invested so much into will always keep ones hopes up so when it fails or doesn’t meet the required expectations, the entrepreneur could lose patience, quit and close down the business. In truth, it’s really never easy to cope with losses especially when all funds in one’s possession has been injected into a business.
Staying dedicated is highly important. Nothing comes easy and most of these challenges will only prove to be lessons when the success comes.
Government policies and unstable economy are another constraint to entrepreneurs but it mainly comes down to the five mentioned. Properly preparing for these challenges will help individuals have a better idea of how to solve them when they arise. Again, the challenges might be tough but they always turn out rewarding when the success sets in.