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Starting a business: 7 tips for living your dream

Partner up!

Creating a company is not an easy task. To do it alone is to take the risk of making mistakes more often, of carrying a heavy load alone, and of depriving yourself of a great collective adventure. You will ensure your success by associating complementary profiles, both from the point of view of skills (technical, commercial, marketing…) and characters (go-getters, strategists, useful paranoiacs etc.). Having several associates will also allow you to take a real vacation to recharge your batteries.

There is no age limit for entrepreneurship

You can start a business right out of university or in the second half of your professional life. But whatever your choice, complete your team by balancing the age pyramid. I have seen too many young managers reinventing the wheel, wasting time and money trying to find a formula that experienced people could have passed on to them, or at least, they are not able to do so.I’ve seen too many young leaders reinventing the wheel, wasting time and money trying to find a formula that experienced people could have passed on to them, or “experienced” teams applying old recipes to new problems, which new blood would have saved them from doing.

A good product

A classic French flaw is to think that a good product will ensure success. Nothing could be further from the truth! In fact, many companies prosper with bad products and good marketing…! Success is a combination of product quality, marketing quality, sales quality and the ability of the whole organization to really listen and serve its customers. Each of these topics requires different qualities. You have to cover all four of these topics with the same strength.

Mirror effect

The biggest risk for designers is to convince themselves that their own idea is right. Unfortunately for them, because they show great energy, a desire that forces the admiration of those around them, they will find few people to oppose their vision. A mirror effect is set up, comforting them in their error. To succeed, creators must remain in permanent doubt, show humility by listening to what their interlocutors say without introducing bias. Not an easy task.

Hiring is not enough

Your team will be the soul and the success of your project. This is why the choice of collaborators is essential. However, recruitment mistakes are inevitable, no matter how experienced you are. It is useless to multiply the number of job interviews, it will not significantly reduce this risk.

The only control you can keep is to know how to … poach. It is very difficult from a human point of view, it makes you feel guilty, especially since these employees are also nice people. But to keep a team together and effective, you have to know how to make these difficult decisions.

The international dream

If exporting can be necessary to find new growth drivers, leaving too early, i.e. when your business model is not yet well established, will make you take considerable risks by multiplying unresolved problems endlessly.

Going international is rewarding, but you must know how to resist the sirens and master your model before conquering the world.

The 3 E’s of entrepreneurship: Execute, execute, execute

One of my mentors told me, “There are plenty of people with good ideas; there are far fewer who are able to execute them!” This is still true.

The idea behind the creation is not critical to your success. What will be critical is your ability to execute the plan, to turn ideas into action, over time.

Here are a few tips on how to improve your chances of execution:

– Work hard, it’s not essential, but it does help.

– Always prefer a simple and imperfect solution to a perfectly complicated one,

– Work as a team.

Don’t rest on your “excellent” idea, nothing works by itself, rather work on its realization, methodically. And if the idea turns out to be bad? Change your idea, but always execute with determination.

Entrepreneurship is a great collective adventure, live your dreams!


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