Entrepreneurs are often portrayed as “Lone Rangers” who have trouble working with other people. While this may be the case with some new venturists, the entrepreneurs we have interviewed thrive on the experience of others. Most realize they lack some of the deftness required to maneuver their expanding enterprise, so they enlist cohorts to fill in the voids — and in some cases, straddle the chasm. Indeed, they seem to have a knack for finding players with compensating talents, enthusiasm for teamwork, and a fervor for the start-up environment. In other words, these entrepreneurs are super team builders who quickly put the puzzle pieces in place. Throughout our hundreds of interviews with successful entrepreneurs, we have heard them praise their mentors, partners, managers, and board members. Not only do they share the credit for their success, but many also share ownership.
For example, Hyrum Smith, cofounder of FranklinCovey, brought in partners to provide administrative, marketing, and financial leadership to a growing business. The company made more than thirty people millionaires when it went public in 1994, including Karma, the company’s first order-entry clerk. Apparently, bringing in strong team members early, then sharing the credit and rewards, are critical to getting new ventrues over the inevitable humps of entrepreneuring. Would-be entrepreneurs who hold onto everything and try to do it all themselves usually sputter, then tumble.
During the process of formulating an opportunity, the hopeful entrepreneur needs support from many significant characters — a parent, spouse, sibling, customer, friend, professor or boss. It must be individuals with the credibility to endorse the notion and champion the plunge. Nearly all the entrepreneurs in our stories received some type of support at launch time: serious encouragement, seed money, a first contract, free consulting, feedback on ideas, introductions to vital contacts, ongoing financial support, and so on. In some cases, encouraging mentors were the only luminous rays of light in a murky tunnel of snarl-faced naysayers. Many of our entrepreneurs warn against listening to people who discourage the new venture. Apparently, opposing comments heard by aspiring entrepreneurs can be offset by credible and assuring voices — voices that seem to be necessary for launching the startup. Without support from a brain trust of mentors and advisors,many of our business founders confessed they would not have started the heartrending journey.
At My New Enterprise, Our mission is to provide the most innovative and engaging resources available to help aspiring entrepreneurs and business builders create successful ventures. We help turn ideas into opportunities, opportunities into business models, and business models into thriving organizations.