Owning your own business is definitely the most preferable course of action everyone wants to take as soon as possible. Entrepreneurship is definitely more glorified in our society today than ever, and for good reasons.
Statistically speaking, there are about half a million new businesses started each month. This number, of course, includes startups across all industries.
But, Statistics Are Not Always Exciting
However, isn’t it another interesting fact that 7 out of 10 businesses shut down in their first new year of operation?
Now, I don’t know about you but I have seen more people than I can count in just the last 2-3 years who started a business (all kinds of businesses) and they didn’t last very long.
Why Do People Start Businesses But Don’t Succeed?
Building a business isn’t that hard, but it does require discipline and focus. People do get started in a business or two but can’t keep their focus or do not have enough discipline to stay the course.
Many others get started because of excitement or because it’s a popular choice these days. However, they do not have the knowledge or experience. Many such people eventually give up because they don’t get proper guidance and support.
Many entrepreneurs started a business (like some of my friends) because of their shiny object syndrome and then got distracted and moved on to the next one and then the next one. They just can’t stay focused on one thing for very long.
Not Everyone Can Become A Successful Entrepreneur
Let’s get real. The thought of starting your own business is cool. But you must know the ugly aspects of getting into business for yourself as well.
As a matter of fact, not everyone is meant to be a successful doctor, an astronaut, an actor, a singer, and so on. Nothing in this world is good for everyone and, certainly, not everyone is meant to be an entrepreneur. That is a hard, cold fact of life.
However, many of these people would have probably stayed a little longer in their ventures or even succeeded if they would have had some of these things:
- If they would have received mentorship from somebody sincere who has walked the path before them and succeeded.
- If they would have received support from people who were in the same pursuit of success.
- If they would have been part of a positive supportive mastermind group that would lift them up one more time when they fell.
- If they would have sincerely followed a success system that would have guided them forward every step of the way.
- If they would have not given up on their dreams and goals which caused them to start their business in the first place.
Where Network Marketing Can Be A Life Saver
Several years ago, when I started my first business, I didn’t think I could ever make a dime in it. But as the legend has it, since a friend showed me, I said ‘Yes’ and decided to give it a shot.
Today, looking back, I think that was the best decision I ever made, and that also because of my beautiful wife, Tina, who persuaded me to say ‘Yes’ to the opportunity at the time it presented itself to us.
All of the above features that I described above, were provided to me as a bonus for starting my business with one of the world’s largest network marketing companies. Well, it wasn’t just the company, it was the team that attracted me and we made it big.
Today, my network marketing business spans across multiple subcontinents. Again, it was the power of the system and the power of association that I attribute my success to. That is the real cause of my success.
A network marketing business, with a good leadership team, can provide the environment for anybody with a big dream to eliminate distractions, stay focused, and stay the course.
It is the result of that teaching, that power of association that I was able to keep myself motivated when things didn’t look so good. It kept me going in all my other businesses because it consistently reminded me that success comes only after a struggle.
The teachings, and the motivation which I received (and continue to receive even today), keep me going every day of my life, in every aspect of my life. It is the fuel that drives me to do it just one more time when it feels like things aren’t going to work.
I think that everybody deserves to enjoy the same power of association, that power of business mentorship which can be a lifesaver for so many solo entrepreneurs whose dreams die because they couldn’t keep up alone with their struggles otherwise.
Harsh Truths Of Entrepreneurship And Network Marketing
Now, being an entrepreneur is usually hard. Not so much because it takes a lot of money or a lot of time. But, there are more important issues to deal with when you are an entrepreneur.
I am going to share some of the most difficult aspects of being an entrepreneur and why I think that network marketing is the best antidote for each of them:
1. As An Entrepreneur, You Are On Your Own
To be alone is a scary thought for many of us. That is why we always find fun in doing things that most other people are doing so we can make friends, can have a sense of belonging.
Students have classmates. Employees have colleagues. And have you realized that most of us get involved in one or other form of community activity so we can meet new people and make friends? When you are part of any organization, you have members to interact with.
But, in most cases, when you start a business of your own, you are truly on your own. You have what they call ‘cut-throat’ competition, but mostly nobody to help you. And, if at all, you have somebody to support you; a family member (if you get lucky) or your business partner (if you are luckier.)
Can you imagine facing the challenges of running a business by yourself, all alone? Yes, you can do it, but not everybody can endure for long. That is why many people quit on their dreams after a while.
The power of association is one of the biggest blessings of being in a network marketing business with real people, and real leaders and I wouldn’t trade that for anything. It has saved me from being a quitter in my other businesses more than once!
2. Most Entrepreneurs Just Own Their Jobs
A friend of mine owns a restaurant. Another friend of mine owns a grocery store. Some of my friends are online entrepreneurs blogging and selling their online services. Some others in my network are into medical distribution and so on.
One thing I have noticed after talking to each of these people is, they all work long hours. They are early to the office and late to come home. They work weekends and can’t take leaves like their employees.
That is why most people call themselves ‘self-employed’. They can’t be fired because they own their jobs. But their incomes are still limited by their ability to perform on a daily basis.
Isn’t it sad that you still have to perform every day to keep your business alive even after 10, 15, 20 years of running a business?
Network Marketing Antidote
The very idea behind the concept of the network marketing industry itself is to build a business that will endure. It is about building a business that will outlive you once established.
Yes, there is hard work needed. So is the case with any business. You can’t build a business and succeed at it by being lukewarm.
It takes extraordinary work to build anything extraordinary and having a business that you build once and reap the rewards over and over again for life, is an extraordinary expectation, don’t you think?
But, the point is, once you commit to it and build it right, the rewards are truly amazing!
The greatest blessing of participating in this extraordinary industry has been its impact on my mindset. In all my other endeavors, the knowledge and experience gained through my network marketing business have helped me think of and focus on long-term success.
It helps me evaluate every opportunity, every new business idea, in terms of its ability to endure without me, and develop a process so I can remain free. This realization itself is priceless.
3. It Takes Years Of Hard Work To Become Successful
Depending on the industry and nature of your business, any business takes at least a couple of years to establish to make consistent profits.
Some of the tremendously successful businesses like Amazon and Facebook took at least 5 years to see profits in their accounts. How about the latest buzz, WhatsApp? They were founded in 2009 as a free messaging platform. Yes, it was sold for $19 billion to Facebook. But, are they an overnight success?
Taking any business to a significant level of success takes time no matter how fast you want to build it. That means you need to remain focused, excited, disciplined, and persevere for a prolonged period of time.
Especially when you are a small business owner with very few or no employees, your need for these qualities is even more because you can easily close and walk away without losing much when the challenges arise (which is bound to happen).
Network Marketing Antidote
To endure for such a long time, you need a system in place that you can follow every day consistently until you realize your dreams. It is one of the biggest challenges of solo entrepreneurs because discipline is a hard thing to achieve when you are all alone in the game.
Network marketing businesses (especially when you are with a good leadership team) are all about creating simple rituals.
Have big goals but you take a few little actions consistently every single day. You submit yourself to the process, follow the path along with your other peers, and enjoy the power of association while having fun and you will endure much longer than you could otherwise.
Reading every day becomes a ritual. Going to business meetings, and investing in self-education becomes a ritual. Talking to prospects, handling objections, and making new connections become a ritual. And then, how long it takes to make it happen, just becomes a matter of success catching up with you.
And do you think a person with such a mentality will succeed in anything they start? You bet!
4. As An Entrepreneur, You Have To Sell
Oops! But unfortunately, there is no way around it.
I have many friends who want to build businesses. They have great ideas for creating awesome products and tremendously powerful services. They also have the skills to deliver.
But what they don’t really get is, if they don’t have customers, those ideas are worth, not much.
If you want to become successful as an entrepreneur (which you should) and you are afraid of selling, it’s not the end of the world. Sales is just a skill you can hone just like you learned reading, writing, programming, or playing soccer. You can learn it.
But, if you think that you can succeed without skills in sales, I have news for you – nobody succeeds until they sell. Nobody!
This is what some entrepreneurs discover along the way and when they do, having no support group, having no mentorship, it becomes easy for them to quit. They quit because they hit a roadblock after which they don’t see themselves succeeding.
So, they make an impulsive decision to quit on their dreams and go back into their reliable rut.
Network Marketing Antidote
Just as Robert Kiyosaki says in his incredible Business School: For People Who Like Helping People and in many other forums, network marketing is the best way for people to learn Business 101.
- You don’t have a boss and yet you have accountability.
- You don’t have to lose an arm and a leg to learn sales skills.
- You don’t need to be ashamed of failing because you have a team cheering for you, guiding you, and supporting you while you are getting up one more time after you fall.
Network marketing allows you to learn these invaluable skills at your own pace. The team allows you not just to get educated on the concepts but also helps you practice what you learn so you can master those skills over time. What an incredible opportunity to learn and grow through a proven system!
5. As An Entrepreneur, You Need To Deal With People
I remember talking to a friend of mine years ago when I was showing him my network marketing opportunity. He was doing pretty well in his career as an IT professional at the time, although he wanted to start a business.
At the end of everything, he took a deep breath and said to me, “This would have been a great business if I didn’t have to deal with people or sell these products.”
I don’t remember now exactly what I said or how I handled this objection. But, now when I look back, the only thing that comes to my mind is, “How dumb people can be!”
Many people want to start their own business but they don’t want to sell anything (or at least they don’t like to) and deal with people (I wonder who buys products or services?)
When you’re running a business, depending on the size of your industry and the size of your business, you are constantly dealing with employees, vendors, and customers.
Dealing with people is not easy and it doesn’t come naturally to many (me included). However, it is the most critical part of being a successful business leader and entrepreneur. You can’t avoid people and become successful.
Many people start investing money in building infrastructure, stock products, and building websites and then hope that people will just come to them and start buying. But actually, it works the other way. For your initial set of customers, you have to go out and find one customer at a time.
This is the realization that solo entrepreneurs do not realize in the beginning and when they realize, they decide that business is not for them. My question is, is it really that hard to learn to deal with people? And even if it is, isn’t it worth the effort?
Network Marketing Antidote
Just as selling, dealing with people has much to do with your own learning about yourself and about people. It is a skill that you need to learn.
Not feeling comfortable in front of others is natural. Everybody begins their journey from that place and they gradually overcome that fear to become good at people skills through training and practice.
And I got that training, that practice for almost free and I love it. In fact, for a person like me, it was much-needed training, whether or not I wanted to build a business, just so I could have some friends.
It was because of network marketing that I ever got to introduced to some of the most incredible books in the area of people skills.
It’s not just the books but the power that comes to you when you are reading the same book along with many others, sharing your knowledge with others, learning from others about it, and then putting that learning to work in the field. This is the whole package that makes network marketing such an incredible way to personal development.