Myth #1. The Success of a start-up depends more on Entrepreneurial Talent of the founders:
True that some natural talent always helps in making an entrepreneurial success. But this is not a necessity. Entrepreneurship wisdom can be learnt also. Entrepreneurship is certainly not a new concept and many studies have been done in this field to understand the art and science behind this discipline. What is important to be an entrepreneur is understand the risk factors and be able to analyze them. More than the natural knack for entrepreneurship it is the superior analytical ability, which can put the odds in your favor. Moreover, you execution abilities will define the success or failure of an entrepreneurial start-up.
It is equally important to choose the right industry to earmark a significant portion of the market share. Your entrepreneurial stints should address the opportunities in the growth industries rather than in the mature industries where the growth curve has reached a plateau.
Myth #2. To be an Entrepreneur You Should Be High Risk Taker:
It is not so unless you are an impulsive person who takes action without first contemplating the consequences of it. On the contrary, you should not be an impulsive high-risk taker type of a person to be an entrepreneur. If you are then it is very likely that you will not be a successful entrepreneur, and in the course of events you will loose out on your job-career as well. It is an opportunity loss for you in terms of lost work-experience and the lost deemed salary income.
It is required to be a calculated risk-taker if you want to be an entrepreneur. Risk is prevalent in many forms and in many aspects of our lives. You cannot avoid risk. But when it is calculated risk, then the chances of failure reduce significantly. One way to reduce your risk is to validate your business idea with a target group. This will ensure you whether the product or service that you are offering has an actual demand or not. If there is no demand, then there is no business, even if you consider the idea to be justifiable. In order to succeed your idea should have a demand at a considerably sizeable scale.
Myth #3. To be an Entrepreneur, you need an “invention” to start with:
It is not true that to be an entrepreneur, you need to have an innovative “invention”. You could be an entrepreneur shaping up a business for profits even if you do not have an “invention” to offer. You could be an entrepreneur providing a significant value addition around an invention, whether it is regarding a product or a service.
For example, Infosys did not come up with an “innovative” business idea per se. Neither were they the first outsourcing-offshore company. But Infosys definitely built perfections around the innovative concept of IT outsourcing-offshoring, and were excellent at executing the business processes. These factors have contributed to its marvelous success story.
Myth #4: Entrepreneurship is for Technology people:
Though it is true that out of many entrepreneurial stories that we come across, most of them would be in technology. This is because of the fact that technology is fast paced arena. The time that it takes for any technological evolution and advancement is relatively short. But many other industries open-up quite a few opportunities especially in growth and developing economies like India. Typically any developing economy offers tremendous potential for entrepreneurial start-ups in services industry.
There is tremendous scope for businesses built around Web 2.0 and Web 3.0 concepts in India. Almost every industry has opened up niches to be tapped: Both product and services wise. It does not take to invent any technology in this case. Neither does it make it necessary for founders/entrepreneurs to have technical knowledge.
Myth #5: To be an Entrepreneur, you need to have required experience of a particular industry:
Whereas experience always helps, but you can also start your entrepreneurial venture in an unrelated industry or segment also. The key is to understand that if you have work experience, then you will have a better hands-on during the execution phase of your start-up. As I have mentioned earlier also, the execution is the key to achieving success, even if your idea and industry/segment is identified after due diligence. Having a work experience itself helps you to visualize the business processes and helps you better to conceptualize opportunities into ideas.
Myth #6: All Entrepreneurs receive and start with Venture Capital Funding:
I consider this as the biggest myth. Not every entrepreneurial venture receives Venture Capital (VC) funding at the start-up stage. Infact start-ups usually start with their own funds. VCs typically wait till the time there is a visible sustained revenue model. To reach that point, either the start-ups are self-funded or in the best-case scenario, they receive Angel Funding.
Myth #7: Entrepreneurship needs a “killer-founders-team” to make it successful:
Yes, it is the “killer-founders-team”, which makes a difference. Even the VCs look for the diversity of the founders’ team in terms of qualifications, past work experience and the amount of “skin” that has been put into the start-up venture! But it is important to understand that the success of a start-up hangs on the fulcrum of the chemistry and the mental frequency of the founders too! In one of the Paul Graham’s essay, he gives allusion of founders’ relationship to that of marriage! Imagine if the founders do not get along with each other, then the start-up is doomed even before it takes-off. It will be like a ship without the captain and the crew, drifting away into the oblivion.
Some typical areas of differences can be, business ethics and values, initial investment (when it is self-funded) and dividing the stake-holding because the founders would have joined (obviously) at different spans of time, unless it is a group of friends or colleagues working in a company.
Myth #8: Being an Entrepreneur will make you work lesser as you will be your own boss:
Do not start an entrepreneurial venture under the myth that you will get to work lesser as you are the top-boss here. In order to make it successful, you will have to work hard around the demands of the start-up. You may even have to be ready to don different caps, as the need be. If needed you could have to serve coffee to your colleagues! A start-up is your baby born out of wedlock between the co-founders around a business idea. So you need to slog and nurture it the way you would nurture your real child.
|About Mridula: Mridula is a freelance writer. She writes on Entrepreneurship and has worked for a start-up in the past. To know more check out her profile at LinkedIn/Mridula Velagapudi|