Three years ago, I asked a key member of my leadership team to head up a data collection project. The goal was to interview a wide range of our successful business owner clients to identify common attributes, experiences and insights from their journeys through each stage of the business lifecycle. It’s worth noting that throughout the history of our firm, we have helped hundreds of business owning families to simplify the financial complexities they face, from succession planning, to pre and post-transaction planning, to tax planning to next generation wealth planning and education, and that each client faces unique challenges and has unique goals they wish to achieve. So in many ways, each journey is entirely different. The intent of the research was to understand the emotional and technical aspects of their challenges, unearth the root causes and identify best practices which other entrepreneurs could use to guide them on their own journeys.
What I learned from our clients, and the insights I gained reflecting on my experience starting and growing Waldron Private Wealth, was the inspiration to write The Entrepreneurial Journey.
The starting point for any entrepreneur is an idea. Seeing something that doesn’t exist that should, a better way of delivering a service or a more efficient way to deliver a product. An opportunity that hasn’t been discovered yet. This is where most journeys begin, and also where many end, because two other essential components are needed to get an idea off the ground: The belief that your idea is valuable and the drive to take the idea from concept to deliverable. Doubt. Fear. Even comfort can work against you at this stage. Counteracting these emotions can be the biggest challenge to your venture, bigger than competition in the marketplace or prevailing economic factors because without a clear belief in your idea and the drive to realize your vision, no idea, no matter how great, has a chance.
This is the first in a series of posts introducing topics and takeaways from The Entrepreneurial Journey. This series will explore the lessons learned from entrepreneurs who clearly understood what it takes to be successful.
For more information about The Entrepreneurial Journey or to read an excerpt from the book, click here.
Interested in learning more about getting your business off the ground? View our additional resources and get a free copy of John Waldron’s “The Entrepreneurial Journey” below.