Entrepreneurship is a rocky road, but it has its advantages.
There's no doubt that starting a business is no easy feat. In fact, some out there would have you believe that the odds are stacked against you--you have no experience, no critical judgement, no idea how to get from point A to point B.
This may very well be true. But there are also plenty of others who say that first-time entrepreneurs actually have several advantages that their more experienced counterparts lack.
You will fail...often.
As an entrepreneur, you will fail. As a new entrepreneur, you will fail even more. But as you've probably heard: Failure is a very good thing.
“Any risk you take today is a risk you can recover from. In time, you can overcome almost any setback, stumble, or failure, and emerge stronger and smarter and better equipped to succeed the next time,” said Inc. contributor Jeff Haden.
And the fact that you will inevitably make many mistakes, espeically in the early days, can lead to unexpected creativity and innovation. Paul Schoemaker, research director at the Mack Center for Innovation Management at Wharton, recently wrote:
Behavioral economics tells us that we humans are short-sighted by nature. We are wired to seek out evidence that confirms what we already believe and to ignore evidence that contradicts it. On top of that, we are usually overconfident, thinking we know more than we do and underestimating how much we don’t know. This leads to tunnel vision and myopic judgments. The great virtue of mistakes, whether by accident or design, is that they widen your range of experience and shrink your ego--and thereby open you to discoveries you’d otherwise never make.
You're an attractive asset.
The label "entrepreneur" no longer has the bad reputation it had in years' past. As a result, there is a whole system of support built around entrepreneurship, and large companies are more likely then ever to get into business with start-ups.
“Connecting to early stage innovation, they [the host companies] are able to speed up their own internal innovation, see things their competitors miss, and bring cutting-edge solutions to their customers,” Unity Stoakes, co-founder of StartUp Health Academy, recently told Inc.
You are still fresh.
Or as Lauren Bush Lauren recently said, "When you don't quite know all the rules, you can more easily break them," in reference to not knowing the retail space before she launched FEED projects.
And though he may not be a business whiz, the words of former Obama speech writer Jon Lovett told the graduation class at Pitzer College are pretty noteworthy:
The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function. That's what you have to do: you have to be confident in your potential, and aware of your inexperience. There are moments when you'll have a different point of view because you're a fresh set of eyes because you don't care how it's been done before; because you're sharp and creative; because there is another way, a better way. But there will also be moments when you have a different point of view because you're wrong.
You have the freedom of choice.
As an entrepreneur you decide what you have the opportunity to decide what paths you go down and what opportunities you would like to pursue.
"As entrepreneurs, we are always analyzing the state of the world, examining the larger stories that are playing out on a macro/global level. While we strive to make sense of these big-picture stories, we are also searching for the places our personal strengths and passions can make a larger impact on the world. We make the most difference when we find where the intersection point of the thing that makes us feel alive also lines up with the bigger story, allowing us to improve society in some meaningful way," Josh Allan Dykstra said to Inc. contributor Ilya Posen.
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