Never waste a good recession – Many of our most successful entrepreneurs have set out on their business journey in recessionary times and even though in the last 18 months we have technically come out of recession being in periods of growth, the business environment today is extremely challenging.

In 2010, I handed back the keys to my company car, returned company credit card and walked out of a highly successful company with the idea of starting to work for myself.  At that time we were in the midst of one of the biggest property crashes in the last hundred years – and what was I going to do? Set up a property company.  Many of my colleagues and peers thought I was mad to leave the so called security of a JOB, however I have always wanted to work for myself, and those who know me are aware I rarely shirk a challenge.  Four years on and thankfully I am still working for myself and the experience has been tremendous in many ways all be it seriously challenging.

I feel there are many skills you need to not only survive in business but to also thrive which is important however I have outlined three main areas I feel is fundamental to your success below; 

  • Have a business plan – this is not an idea.  Everybody has great ideas, but most never execute them.  I call them pipe dreams and visualise most people sitting in a corner in Donegal smoking a pipe coming up with all sorts of ways to crack the business world.  Sorry to say but anyone can do this.  A business plan doesn’t have to be 50 pages, one page is fine if it tells the story and sets out the pathway for your business proposal.  Most business plans should have the following areas covered; 1) Your concept 2) Target Market 3) Financials – these need to be robust.  Its important to take advice on this plan from a professional who has worked through many business plans with people like yourself.  Don’t try and reinvent the wheel.
  • Investment – this is crucial.  You won’t get too far if you have no funds to take you there.  No matter what industry you are in, you will need to be able to cashflow your business.  The banks at the moment are still struggling themselves and credit is hard to come by.  Most new businesses now get very little bank help so you need to be more creative with this.  If you cannot self fund the business then you need to find an investor.  There are a number of business angels out there today looking for opportunities to invest, however they won’t be interested in investing in your company if they cannot see what is in it for them and be satisfied that they will get heir money back and a return.  If you need an investor I would encourage you to take professional advice from someone who would be able to advise you in this area and possibly assist you attract the investment you require.
  • Emotional Stability – a strange requirement I hear you say but if its good enough for Warren Buffet to have as his number one requirement to be successful in business  then it makes my top three. Warren Buffet is one of the worlds richest men and top investors.  This is incredibly powerful and really gets to the crux of business for me.  There are so many stressful situations involved in running your own company.  Lots of problems needing sorted with cashflow, staff, logistics, operational matters etc etc.  Its important to have a strong character and clear state of mind to make sure that every decision you make is the correct one.  So Emotional stability for me is key to making sure your business survives and also has the opportunity to thrive.

On thing I will leave you with which I want you to think about is a mindset that Jim Rohn encourages.  Jim is one of Americas most influential and successful business mentors and advisors.  “Work harder on yourself than you do on your Job”.  He is talking about personal development.  If you don’t know what this means then work it out.  The rewards in committing to this statement are infinite.

Best of luck with whatever business and industry you are in.


Conor DevineComment