In a perfect world, all entrepreneurs succeed easily. No one deals with debt and other financial struggles; everyone has thousands of customers and increasing sales daily. They are overnight successes that scale fast.
In reality, however, entrepreneurship is not a walk in the park. If it were a walk in the park, it would be in Jurassic Park. Even the best entrepreneur faces struggles. After all, not every business venture is a smooth-sailing adventure. Many business owners live under gray and stormy skies — and some of them have been in the business for years.
Entrepreneurship is not an easy path. It’s a narrow path that comes with risky terrain, financial instability, higher failure rates, stiff competition and the unknown. As a result, 72 percent of business owners are indirectly or directly affected by mental health issues.
For this reason, talking about the roadblocks of entrepreneurship is important. Knowledge is power, plus knowing that you’re not alone in the journey offers comfort.
Below are some of the common entrepreneur struggles that many businesses face.
Launching a New Business is Scary Business
Your business is the product of your hard work. You’ve taken so much time to build, refine and improve all aspects of your business. Much of your hours and days were spent building your brand, developing your products and services, creating a marketing strategy and finalizing the look of your store to ensure everything is perfect.
Naturally, preparing for the launch is a scary business. After all, you’re unsure whether your hard work will pay off. The first day of your business can give you an idea of the potential outcome.
What if no one notices your launch? What if no one comes? On the flip side, what if people know about your launch, what will they think about it? What happens if something goes wrong during the process?
It’s natural to second guess all the decisions you make leading up to the launch. But many business owners can attest to the importance of facing the launch since it is a crucial part of your entrepreneurial journey.
Here are two things to keep in mind: not everyone does it perfectly and an imperfect launch is better than no launch at all.
Use an imperfect launch to your advantage. Customers and partners will offer feedback, which you can use to improve your products and services.
Entrepreneurship is a Non-Linear Path
Like any journey, entrepreneurship is a rollercoaster ride full of ups and downs. From sourcing concerns to sudden logistic problems, financing issues and problems with the staff, you never know what challenges the new day will bring.
Your journey will always be fraught with uncertainty, but the early stages of running your business are more likely to be full of ups instead of downs. When you do go through challenges, persevere through them since they include skills that help you solve foundational problems. These skills can help keep your business up and running despite the challenges. Encountering hard problems right away guarantees big dividends in the long run.
Cash Flow Management is Always a Challenge
Cash flow is the blood that pumps the heart of every business, yet many entrepreneurs struggle with paying their bills while waiting for their checks. Part of the problem is due to delayed invoices, which is a common challenge in business.
The ideal setup is you provide products and services, send an invoice and get paid immediately. The money you get pays for your supplies, contractors, employees and other bills. If you don’t get paid immediately, you risk a lot of things.
Proper budgeting is a proven solution. With a budget, you can easily maintain cash flow and reduce the need to stress over your bills. Another way to improve cash flow is to require a down payment for your services and products. By requiring a down payment, you secure money for paying the other bills.
Time Flies Often
Time management is one of the biggest challenges faced by entrepreneurs, especially by startup owners that wear many hats. These business owners are often in charge of sales, marketing, production and more.
To solve this problem, you have no choice but to make time. Money doesn’t grow on trees, so you have to be wise with how you spend it and your time.
Here are some ways to manage your time well.
- Create a goals list. Break down your goals into annual, monthly and weekly goals to avoid getting overwhelmed.
- If the tasks do not mesh with your goals, remove them.
- If you don’t have to complete the tasks, delegate them.
Entrepreneurs face many challenges, but intelligence and perseverance can help you deal with most of them, if not all. Fortunately, many resources can help you get through your most challenging days.