Motivation and loneliness are among the top unforeseen challenges of starting a business. Staying motivated is critical to keeping a business alive, but it isn’t something you can buy. Family, friends, and colleagues can be a great source of motivation. So even if you’ve never started a business, you can be instrumental in helping others start and maintain their own. Here’s what you can do to offer your support:
Take Them Out to Lunch
Starting a business can be lonely when you feel you are the only one that believes in your vision. That worsens when you have to work in isolation on initial business planning.
Invite your friend out to lunch or dinner for a ‘business meeting’. Let them talk to you about the challenges, goals, and recent successes in their business. Or, if they want a little break from the madness this could be a great opportunity to catch up and take a break from their business. Be open. Take their lead for the topic of conversation.
Ask How You Can Help
Funding is an important part of starting a business, but it’s not the only thing that matters. Marketing, sales, operations, and accounting are also critical parts to a successful business. Ask what is need and how you might be of help. This is could be a great opportunity for you to sharpen some skills that you are not using in your own day-to-day job. Ask, you might be surprised with what they say.
Networking is powerful. If you hear of networking events, find a professional organization, or just meet someone that you think would be a great resource – be sure to share that info with your friend. You can make an introduction via LinkedIn or emails, or just text over a link.
Blogs are great resources too. Share this How to Become a Better Entrepreneur.
Celebrate Small Victories
The road to entrepreneurship is made up of many small wins before the big goal is reached. Celebrating small victories is a simple, impactful way to keep your friend encouraged. Whether they approved their first samples or raised funding you can share their progress by tweeting out their accomplishments or sending a congratulatory email or text.
Have Impactful Interactions
In an industry where you have to constantly prove your business value and trajectory, it’s important to stay encouraged. Encourage your friend by reminding them of their potential and initial vision. Remember those ‘small victories’ or ‘resources’ that might help them push through hard times. When they need advice be sure to ask good questions before diagnosing a problem and offering advice.
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