So if you have just started your business, you are part of a growing army of under 35’s who have taken that bold step. Have you started your business because of a passion? The key traits always identified with young entrepreneurs are their passion and optimism. You are probably also an expert at using social media and networking and not afraid of using your current social circle to help grow you business.
The key to business success seems to be the ability to turn those dreams into reality. Passion and perspective will get you started but how do you sustain that passion and turn your business into an ongoing success?
How do you find the skills to grow your business, to keep up with demand, to employ staff and deal with cash flow? Family and friends may provide a supportive ear in times of stress but may not have the knowledge required and ‘switch off’ after hearing you talk about your business concerns each night.
Have you thought about a business mentor? A mentor provide a crucial objectivity that you need. A business mentor was identified in a 2011 Ernst & Young report ‘Nature or Nurture – Decoding the DNA of the Entrepreneurs’ as the third most important factor attributed to obtaining the skills needed to build successful businesses.
The guidance of a mentor can help provide the benefits of ‘been there, done that’ to a new business. They can help provide you with structure and help set goals. A business mentor can also help with the business confidence by providing a sounding- board for new ideas.
Finding a mentor may seem a bit daunting at first – where do you start looking? Identify your strengths and weaknesses and how you may benefit from a mentor. Then think about your existing networks – you might already know someone with whom you have a great relationship who would be willing either formally or informally to mentor you.
You could join a business network to increase your circle of business contacts. The other option is to seek out a formal mentor program. The key is to start looking. There are many ways to help turn your passion into ongoing reality – what will you do today?
A Blog from NSW Trade and Investment for Shoe String Startups. Written by Caroline Allen.