"After my first exit, I looked back at the experience running my first company Bikewagon to see what made me tick, and how I added value,"” - Dale Majors
Going out on your own is a big deal. It's freeing, challenging, and brings a sense of purpose that is hard to find in a 9 to 5. It can also be very challenging.
I'd like to share three questions that have helped me determine if I'm well suited for a business.
What has worked well in the past?
After my first exit, I looked back at the experience running my first company Bikewagon to see what made me tick, and how I added value, it surprised me how much I loved the initial growth stages.
I thrived in the unknown, and enjoyed having problems to solve. That experience helped me in my next business to know what problems I wanted to solve, the ones I felt best suited for.
Here's how I broke down a job function I loved, and how I transitioned that skill to what I do now at Venture Anyway.
Trade Shows. I loved meeting new suppliers and trade partners and staying top of mind with them. That helped me gain priority access to their special deals. I thrived on the challenge of meeting new people and introducing myself to as many people as I could.
How could I replicate this in a future business? I loved having people to chase, so as I set up Venture Anyway, part of my business model is to find and recruit facilitators to present my content and moderate my mastermind groups. There's an infinite number of chapters I could set up, and I figure I'll be able to stretch myself for years to come on a similar treasure hunt to what I had at Bikewagon.
Consider past experiences where you felt high energy and delivered great results. What skill were you exercising and how could you duplicate those conditions in a future business?
Do those conditions exist in this business?
What special skills do you bring?
You've heard the saying that we should ride the horse in the direction it's going, right? I agree. Just like Sprinters and Marathoners are built differently, or how a contractor that specialized in demolition probably shouldn't be doing the finish work, each of us has a special set of skills.
I've personally shown up to the airport two separate times on the wrong day, twice! Whenever I book travel or do detail work I now make sure to triple check the details. I'll never be the best guy to take over an accounting department.
I am good at communication with others, and I happen to love it. I've felt high energy whenever I get to present or share with a group. I love working on problems that don't have easy answers, and enjoy working on big problems that don't have a single right or wrong answer.
These are special skills. What special skills do you have, and how can you use them in your business venture?
Why will it be worth it?
I applaud people that enjoy working a regular job. It's way easier most the time, and easier to check out of at the end of the day. Wanting to make more money, or have a bit more freedom may not be a good enough reason to carry you through the rough patches.
When I was 21 I rode my bike from Canada to Mexico, and listened to the book "Goals!" by Brian Tracy on a cassette tape. Listening to that book several times and having those six weeks to explore gave me a lot of time to think about how I wanted to spend my life.
Upon returning from that trip I had a very strong impression that I should go full time into entrepreneurship, specifically selling bike parts like I had been doing. I knew that if I didn't, I'd never be able to do that sort of trip again, and more importantly, it felt like that was exactly what God wanted me to do.
With Venture Anyway I feel the same intense desire to contribute through building a community for entrepreneurs. When things are hard, slow, or frustrating, I can lean on this purpose and it keeps me motivated.
Does the business you're looking at have the factors in place to lock in your dedication for years to come?
Spend some time considering these three points. Above all, if you feel compelled to get into a business, don't let fear get in the way and make it happen!