Overcome the Top 10 Entrepreneur ChallengesWhen starting or running your own business, you'll face these entrepreneur challenges. Real entrepreneurs don't let that stop them. Now they won't even slow you down!
Entrepreneurs face challenges from many sources... external threats may come from competitors, from the bank that turns you down for financing or the government agency that refuses your license application. Internal challenges are far more deadly to your success.
The difference for entrepreneurs with ADHD, however, is that a slightly different approach may be necessary to overcome the same challenges other entrepreneurs face. In this article, we'll look at the top 10 entrepreneur challenges briefly, and then I'll share two essential strategies you must apply if you hope to overcome any entrepreneur challenge.
Top 10 Entrepreneur ChallengesThese 10 challenges come up with my clients again and again. They aren't in order of importance, but ask any entrepreneur to list his or her most vexing challenges and I'll bet you'll find them on this list.
- Paperwork: You hate doing it. You hate organizing it. You'd love to throw it out, but you can't decide what you can get rid of and what to keep.
- Delegation: You can't trust anyone to do it as well as you. You haven't practiced your delegation skills, it's no surprise when it doesn't go well, justifying your reluctance.
- Perfectionism: Your standards are so high no one can live up to them. Not even you. But perfectionism is motivated by fear. You can't be judged if you never finish.
- Forgetfulness: Poor working memory makes you forget what you're supposed to do. You can remember facts, but appointments? Commitments? Forget it.
- Impulsive Behavior: A person of action, you'd rather move than take time to think. But shooting first and asking questions later just leaves a lot of hole you have to fix.
- Projects: The trouble with projects, planning them, managing them and finishing them starts early. The business plan stops many would-be entrepreneurs before they start.
- Procrastination: With so many exciting things to do, boring but necessary tasks are the bane of every entrepreneur. Why do today what you can put off until tomorrow? Here's a secret strategy that can stop procrastination in it's tracks.
- Getting Organized: You're often inconsistent. Organized in some areas and disorganized in others, you can't seem to transfer the same skills from one area to another.
- Lack of Focus: You have so many brilliant ideas, each one "shinier" than the next, that your biggest challenge it to pick one and see it through from brainstorm to business.
- Time Management: You are chronically late, overcommitted and still overpromising. You underestimate how long things will take and often scramble to catch up late into the night.
Overcoming Entrepreneur ChallengesFaced with any entrepreneur challenge, your first instinct is probably to overreact. If you can't find a paper on your desk, your response is, "I have to reorganize my office!" Of course, because you don't have time to reorganize your office, nothing changes.
Overcoming any of these entrepreneur challenges is going to require change. As an entrepreneur, changes you make will affect other people too.
Let Them See It ComingBig, dramatic changes always meet with resistance. All people resist change. Even you. If you want your life and your business to improve, you must overcome that resistance. Just saying that things might get better is not enough. You know life would be better if you organized your office. (Anything yet?)
If someone came in and organized your office for you, you'd complain you couldn't find things anymore. When you make changes, you'll resist. When you make changes that affect other people, they'll resist.
And you'll be surprised what can upset people. If you decide to improve your work-life balance by leaving the office at a more reasonable hour, you might be surprised at the reaction at home when you show up early for supper. If you disrupt people's routines, at work or at home, you'll meet with resistance.
This is not to say you should continue to work late into the night. Just remember, you must be prepared for that resistance in order to succeed, but you can lessen that resistance if you warn people. Think through the changes you're planning. Who will it effect?
Explain to your spouse that you've been spending too much time at work and you're going to come home a bit earlier so you can spend more time with the family. Ask how you can best fit it into the family's routine and give them a chance to adapt to the new situation.
Take Baby StepsWhen you overreact to a challenge, take a moment. Ask yourself, "What is the smallest change I could make that would actually improve the situation?" Organize your desk? Can you go smaller? Could you clean off the top of your desk?
Next, ask yourself, "What daily routine would reinforce that change?" Could you use an inbox and make it a habit to empty it every morning with your first coffee? Choose an action that you can turn into a ritual.
Solving any entrepreneur challenges takes work. Otherwise, they wouldn't be challenges. But if you make the necessary changes one small step at a time, building a series of routines and rituals that maintain the changes you've made, you'll succeed in the long run, and looking back, it will have seemed almost effortless.
We'll be delving deeper into strategies and solutions for each of the entrepreneur challenges listed above, and more besides. If you're facing these challenges and would like to work with a coach trained to work with entrepreneurs just like you, I'd invite you to contact me. Remember, the first session is on me.
If you need help mastering the entrepreneur skills essential for your success, learn how coaching can help.