Every entrepreneur has reasons for breaking away from the mold and starting their own business, but not all reasons are the right ones. While there are not nearly enough successful entrepreneurs, and you hear several startup founders giving the same reasons for founding their own business. The reasons range from the desire to follow their passion to wanting to solve a problem experienced by themselves or by people they know. But if a business adds no value, gives no inspiration or solves no real need, then you know that it has the wrong motivations.
If the main reason you want to become an entrepreneur is any of the following, then you might want to reconsider your entrepreneurial career.
- You want to become rich: When you found a startup, it will be a long trip punctuated with bad pay and extremely tough work before your business takes off and you start to make money from it. Founders who eventually become rich do so because they have genuine love for what they do. It is so important to them that they don’t mind the odd hours, inconvenience and risks. If you want to become an entrepreneur because you think it will be your ticket to riches, you’re on the wrong track. Answer honestly whether you would still do the work if you knew you wouldn’t get rich doing it. If you wouldn’t, then why risk doing something you have no love for, just for the slim chance that you might get rich doing it?
- Startups are trending right now: If you think startups are the “in thing” right now and it sounds glamorous to introduce yourself as the founder of a startup, then your venture won’t last long. Some people decided to become an entrepreneur after seeing the Facebook movie “the Social Network”. Keep in mind, however that founding a startup is no walk in the park and when things get tough, the people in it for the wrong reasons will chicken out.
- You have no job: Unemployment rates are up, and the frustration of constantly searching for a job with not so much as an interview to show for it could lead many to ask “what if I just started my own business?” While there are several successful businesses that were the result of necessity, being unemployed is not reason enough to become an entrepreneur. The best time to consider entrepreneurship is when you are employed with a steady income and see a business opportunity or a problem that could do with solving. Then you can truly decide whether it would be worth it to leave a paying job to start a business. Whether that business would be worth spending your time, energy and money on, even though it might not work out in the end.
- You want to introduce yourself as the CEO of something: To several regular people with a day job, it may seem like entrepreneurs are an elite group of CEOs and founders and as such, are worth joining. But this is probably the worst reason ever to found a startup. The main point of entrepreneurship is to solve a problem, not print CEO on your business card.
- You want to prove something: ‘Lamborghini, you may be able to drive a tractor but you will never be able to handle a Ferrari properly.’ was reportedly the comment made by Enzo Ferrari that motivated Ferrucio Lamborghini to become an auto manufacturer. While this is a good story to inspire one to become an entrepreneur, keep in mind that Lamborghini was already a success at manufacturing tractors and air conditioners. Leaving everything to pursue a business just to prove a point or get revenge is a mistake. Any sustainable business must be built from our passion, skills and desire to serve people.