• Entrepreneurship

Clear the deck before starting a business

Futurpreneur | September 18, 2012


Dominik Loncar, CYBF Entrepreneur-in-Residence, dloncar@cybf.ca

Simplify, simplify.

Henry David Thoreau

Being an entrepreneur requires a lot of energy and resources. I usually advise would-be-entrepreneurs to “clear the deck.” Here is what I mean:

Emotional Life

If you have pressing family issues or are going through relationship turmoil, then it might be best to resolve that first before you start the business, or at the very least minimize its impact. It’s very difficult to stay focused when you are being emotionally drained. An entrepreneur needs as much emotional stability as they can get.

Financial Life

Minimize any debts you have. Make it a priority to pay them off and look at ways to minimize personal expenses, since starting a business typically involves making very little in the beginning. As an entrepreneur, you will need to be able to manage your money – both personally and for your business.  There is no way around this and any excuses about not liking to do a cash flow or keeping track of your money will hinder your success.

Social Life

Be selective. I do think it’s important to have an outlet other than your business – whether you like to go dancing or visiting family and friends – however, this is not a time to be overloading your calendar with social activities unless they pertain to your business.

Personal Life

Your view about the world will have an impact on how you move forward. Perhaps you had a bad experience in a particular situation which has led to a broad generalization. Let’s face it…we all have our biases however, in business you will be continually tested on your assumptions so keep an open mind and a willing heart.

Set yourself up for success from the get-go by clearing your “deck” as much as possible – you will thank yourself later.