Four mantras to ensure positive growth when you choose to
tread an entrepreneurial path
By Satya Narayanan R.
In some ways, the simulation game played at an Annual Business Conference triggered my thought process and inspired me to write the following. As is globally true among any group of adult learners, about one third of the participants were keenly involved in the game and dispersed feeling rich in their own self estimation; there was another group who was on the periphery while the rest of them just could not connect despite putting in the required effort. Needless to say, adult learning is a voluntary process; it largely depends on individual choice whether one looks back and remembers such activities as a path-changing experience or forgets about them entirely. At a generic level, I feel that the learning from this experience is one of the most important aspects for any small or medium sized entrepreneur who is driven by a desire to grow.
I have enlisted four points here; the four mantras that may help you in your entrepreneurial journey:
Innovation and Differentiation
The life cycles of various products have shrunk considerably across most of the sectors over the past few years. The phrase ‘me-too’ catches up very quickly when a product innovation by any one player becomes successful. In such a context, a basic pre-occupation that an entrepreneur or a product manager should indulge in is to ensure that there the product sees continuous innovation. The plans for such innovations should be carried out effectively to the market place by appropriate communication. Long term success comes from being able to differentiate the offering in the consumers mind. The question for you - are you doing that continuously?
If any business survives on the
revenues coming in from the same set of products for three years or more in today’s context, it is running the risk of either obsolescence or of missed opportunities. The reasons/causes could be many but, the best way out of such a situation is to diversify proactively. The following example
will help you understand this
Diversification is akin to Sachin Tendulkar’s batting (not Sunil Gavaskar’s) during a cricket match. A short-arm pull might go for a four to mid-wicket. Every once in a while he may get out for a miscued shot. In the former case, he would get a huge
applause from the audience while in the latter he would get reviled for
taking an ‘unnecessary risk’.
Success in life is about doing stuff before you run out of options and have none left to choose from!
Therefore, I go with Sachin.
While trying to make a business/product gain market value, deep insights are necessary; hard work is mandatory. Thus, adequate backup capital and investments are necessary to boost your growth plans. Most successful stories of companies talk about appropriate funding and a judicious mix of equity and debt. Great ideas with poor funding would come down heavily on any project. Adequate investments also make the life of an entrepreneur better, reducing the tensions by a notch or two; this is very important for the health of the company (as well as the individual).
Allocation of personal time
An entrepreneur’s personal time and attention do not have a substitute. Existing business can always churn out good candidates for delegations but these candidates may not be as efficient for a new project. New managers and domain experts come handy when it comes down to making the project/product error-free and
competent. However, all that put together along with money is not even half as good as the personal time devoted to the project by the person who is
I strongly recommend that creation of time and space for you to anchor and drive new initiatives should be followed diligently. Without any efforts from your side, the will only be half done.
— The writer is the director at Indus World School of Business, Greater Noida