Many people find themselves struggling with the idea of becoming an entrepreneur. They think that it’s such a far cry from what they used to do (especially if they used to work as an employee in an office building) and they’ll find it hard to cope with the concept of being responsible for everything you do. Unfortunately, this is the type of roadblock that will ultimately prevent you from becoming a successful entrepreneur like you’ve always dreamed of.
Setting both long and short-term goals is one of the things that define a successful entrepreneur. This is because a business owner needs to have a clearly defined vision of what they want to achieve in the future. Whether it’s owning several real estate investment projects or being financially secure to provide a comfortable retirement for yourself and a promising future for your children, there are many different definitions of success.
But in this article, we’ll be going through two of the most common long-term goals that every budding entrepreneur has. It doesn’t matter if you’ve recently started a business or if you’ve been working hard in your industry for a decade, there are times when you need to establish long-term goals in order to help you achieve the level of success that you are aiming for.
Diversifying Your Portfolio
Even if you feel passionate about a certain industry, it doesn’t mean you can’t expand to cover different audiences. One great example of diversification in business is from Jeff Bezos, the chief executive officer of Amazon. Bezos started Amazon in 1994, writing up a business plan for his company during a cross-country trip from New York to Seattle. It was on this journey that he drew up the initial ideas and plans for his new multi-billion dollar company, but at the time, Amazon was just an online bookstore and not the enormous online empire it is today.
Had Bezos not diversified his operations, Amazon would not have become the giant it is today. This just goes to show important breaking into a new industry is as a budding entrepreneur. Sure, you can always specialize your products and services to grow a niche or to appeal to your audience, but if there’s anything consistent among the well-known international companies of the world, it’s that they set trends instead of following them. The concept of trendsetting will be discussed in more detail later in the article, but for now, it’s enough to embrace the idea of it as a way to diversify the products you offer.
But how exactly do you diversify and when is it a good time to do so? This isn’t a question with a static answer and it will depend greatly on the type of business you operate. However, one of the biggest failure points is when you try to offer new products too early. This usually causes you to spread your resources too thinly and it will often result in poor quality across the board. If you’re a fresh startup, then it’s important to specialize your products and build an audience first. Once you’ve established some form of presence in the industry, you can then start to diversify the type of products you offer and invest more of your capital into those different ventures. But for now, sticking to a single niche or industry is best.
But diversifying a portfolio doesn’t just stop at the products you own or even your business. It could also refer to your investment portfolio and the number of successful projects that you have been in charge of. Let’s take real estate for example. If you want to expand your portfolio by investing in larger properties or even by building a skyscraper, then it takes a considerable number of years of experience before you’ll even be considered by lenders and investors as a suitable candidate to head the project. It also requires a lot of knowledge and assistance to pull of a large-scale project such as building a multi-storey building. You should find out more about what it takes to build a large skyscraper or building if you want it to become a long-term goal. There are many safety checks and also financial considerations to keep in mind.
So to conclude this section, diversifying your portfolio is good for a number of different reasons. It’s important to remember that there are many ways to grow your company and as such, many different long-term goals to set yourself. However, you need to learn when to expand your portfolio or range of products and services so that you don’t spread your resources too thinly. The right balance is required to make the most of your capital and it’s essential to use short-term goals in order to reach your long-term aspirations.
Becoming a Trendsetter
If you asked someone to name two smartphone brands, chances are they’ll mention Apple and Samsung, If you asked them to expand that to five, then they might mention companies such as HTC, Sony, OnePlus or even Huawei. This is because Apple and Samsung are both known in business as trendsetters. New technology and features they add to their devices are usually turned into a general standard for the next generation of smartphones from other companies. The idea is that because these companies have such a huge audience, new features, business models and services can be tested first before smaller companies decide to invest their own money. There’s less risk, but there’s also less reward when you’re not the company setting trends.
Becoming a trendsetter is usually one of the long-term goals that we aim for in business, but is it really worth the effort? After all, you will be the one trying out new things and you will always run a risk of creating a product or developing a service that people don’t actually like and you’ll lose money as a result.
While trendsetting does come with inherent risks, it’s still a positive position to be in. This is because trendsetting allows you to quite literally shape society. The products that you create must already be extremely popular and any changes you make will trickle down into other businesses. Trendsetting means that your decisions will almost always be met with a positive response and you can even set the industry standard pricing once you are well-established in the industry.
Take Apple for example with the latest iPhone X release. There has never been a consumer smartphone with a price tag of $999 prior to the iPhone X, but the huge bump in pricing hasn’t affected loyal Apple fans. People will still purchase the phone and more features will be added to future smartphones from other companies to justify a similar increase in pricing. Another example of trendsetting from Apple is the removal of the standard headphone jack. It’s important to note that trendsetting doesn’t necessarily mean you’re the first company to do something. Other smartphone manufacturers in China removed the headphone jack on their phones well before Apple and have even experimented with it for years prior to their own devices omitting it. As a much larger company with more influence, many people will credit Apple for the shift towards removing headphone jacks in the smartphone industry, hence why they are considered a trendsetting company.
Setting trends comes with many ups and downs, but being in that position to send shockwaves through any industry you touch is one that many entrepreneurs aspire to reach. Having so much influence on an industry is both a sign of success and power. It takes many years and a bold business approach in order to become a trendsetter, but once you’re in that seat of power there is very little that could knock you off your throne.
In short, trendsetting is a position that every entrepreneur wants to eventually reach. It’s a long-term goal that requires a lot of planning, communication and dedication, but once you’re able to reach it, your business becomes an important part of both society and the industry itself.
Some Final Words
There are many different long-term goals that you can aspire to reach, but these are just two of the most common ones that should always be kept in mind when attempting to grow not just your business, but your personal brand as well. How you approach these is entirely dependant on your approach to your business, but also depends greatly on how you want to appear to your audience.
Some entrepreneurs fail to set these long-term goals and lose their sense of direction or even purpose.If you want to take your business far, then it’s important to set your sights on long-term goals that you can strive to aim for. Write them down, remind yourself every day and plan your career accordingly in order to become a successful entrepreneur.