How to get into an entrepreneurial frame of mind

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How do I take my first step towards entrepreneurship? The only concrete answer I could give you, is that there is no sure answer.

The path of entrepreneurship is just as unique and unpredictable as the lifestyle it offers. A lot of this is what makes it so special!

That said, in taking those steps myself, and  being involved daily at Dubsado with thousands of people taking that step, I’ve learned a few important things to consider along the way.

Start with one question:

Do I believe that good things are allowed to happen to me?

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This is the crucial question that has changed so much in my life. It’s seemingly inconspicuous; sure I believe good things happen to me. They happen all the time! However, dig a little deeper and examine what motivates key decisions you make.

If you’ve always known what you wanted to do, why did you opt for that 9-5? It could be out of necessity and no one will argue that. Sometimes, we just have to get by and decisions must be made for more than just ourselves.

But let’s assume you have the ability to pursue different paths and failure wouldn’t be crippling. Could it also be that when you think about a life pursuing that passion, you think about the ways it wouldn’t work?

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If you did decide to pursue that calling, do you really believe things would go your way? If you put in the necessary hard work and sacrifice, do believe you’ll find a way? That’s the first question.

Searching and reflecting

It’s important to have a foundation of belief to stand on. With all the rigors of entrepreneurship, you’re gonna need a strong base. It is an amazing lifestyle, filled with endless possibility and control.

It also takes an incredible amount of work and sacrifice to get going. Results are not immediate. Rejection is guaranteed. Self doubt and criticism will be there. So, wait, why is it worth it again?

If you’re going to believe in yourself to make this happen, you also have to believe in what it is you’re investing your passion into. That means having some more honest conversations, identifying what you may be called to, and how to responsibly begin pursuing that.

How do we do that? Well, often the place to start has been right under our noses. It comes down to a lie I believe many of us subconsciously accept:

“The things I’m naturally good at, couldn’t possibly be the things that I could build a career from.”

It’s a simple thought, but it’s a sentiment that I hear echoed nearly word for word from other entrepreneurs who have had the same realization.

It’s important to make sure you take accurate stock of what it is that makes you, you! If you are naturally good at doing something, that isn’t something to brush off.

If you are a natural conversation maker and can make people feel seen and heard, it’s not that you’re just good at talking, no big deal. That is an inherent skill which could be worked into your creative path.

If you love gardening and growing and have nurtured all sorts of things throughout your life, perhaps you are more of a founder than you could realize.

If you have a particular skill for crafting or creating something, where can that be utilized right now? Because the gifts that make you who you are, are not something to brush off as happenstance.

The logistics

Taking that entrepreneurial leap, isn’t all about the mentality though. You will need to get some things in order to be successful. Let’s walk through a few key logistics to work through before you go for it.

Set some clear goals:

You’ve figured out who you are and what you want to be pursuing, now it’s time to visualize them. Establish short term, middle and long term goals for both you as a business owner, but also for your business.

Are you going to be offering services, products, both? How are you going to accomplish this? I cannot emphasize writing them down enough.

The scientific benefits of physically writing down goals is well documented so leave nothing to chance when you start out. Talk with and read from fellow business owners to establish clear, achievable goals.

An easy acronym commonly used for goal setting is S.M.A.R.T. Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Results Focused and Time bound. How do your goals look in that context?

Align who you are and who you’re working for:

You’ve figured out what it is you really want to do, now everything you do needs to reflect that. Your website, your social media presence, the forms you send, the way you engage with clients are all an extension of you and your business.

Those things need to be congruent in order for you to reach your ideal client. Establishing a clear sense of brand identity will in turn, help you identify an ideal market or client and how to pursue them.

Think about how your clients interact.

What social media channels are they active on? What content do they value? What ways are they seeking to engage in community that you may be able to provide? Offering a great service or product isn’t enough to produce results.

Every step of the process needs to be thoughtful.

This also applies beyond sales. So much of entrepreneurship today is what you provide from beyond a business perspective.

Are you educating your community? Are you empowering them? Are you providing resources or giving back? Knowing who you are and who they are is a big component or being able to support your community best.

Lay your foundation:

Do you send contracts, forms, questionnaires? Need to handle getting paid or sending invoices? Do you send email blasts to your leads? Is blogging going to be a central component to your brand?

These are just a few questions to ask yourself before launching.

Like writing out your process, having systems in place and understanding them could make or break your first entrepreneurial step.

The ability to go into business is greater than ever, but so are the bells and whistles to help you do it. It can be overwhelming, but if you find systems that are right for you, the benefit is massive.

Are you still utilizing paper forms? Capturing leads from your website on one service and then following up with another? Want to handle those processes as well as creating, sending and completing any forms, questionnaires contracts and more?

Consider a client management system like Dubsado to handle that and so much more. Need to communicate with a team or stay organized? Try Slack or Asana.

You know your needs! Make sure you have the systems to back them up!

The creative leap

All of this, questioning and reflecting is for one purpose: it’s to get you to your “Creative Leap.” The creative leap is when all of your searching, reflecting, questioning, and dreaming reach a pivotal moment. Where you go for it, or you don’t.

You don’t make a creative leap without having considered the things above. There is a degree of responsibility and action that must be present in these decisions, along with all the obvious risk.

You doubt yourself, or wonder if you really can do it; that’s ok. It’s what this moment is for. If all the best things in life were risk free, we wouldn’t be writing articles on how to get those things.

This would be a good time to mention that surrounding yourself with a like-minded, driven community is so important.

In this crucial phase, having the encouragement of others who have found themselves in a similar place is so valuable. Community makes it easier, but ultimately, it comes down to you.

Taking the first step towards entrepreneurship is not a straightforward ordeal. It’s a winding path and there are no surefire signs that you’re ready to go. Remember, that is part of the entrepreneurial adventure.

Embrace it and know that so many have wondered, taken the leap, and enjoyed a life beyond what they could have ever dreamed. Go ahead! Take your creative leap!

Are you ready to make that leap? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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About Alexander Tutungi

Alexander Tutungi is a graduate of Azusa Pacific University, currently serving as Business Development and Partnerships manager at Dubsado based out of Los Angeles, CA. He is passionate about empowerment, collaboration and story telling, within the creative community. You can find his contributions on the Dubsado blog, and as the host of Dubsado’s (future) Podcast “The Creative Leap.”

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