No Idea? No Problem. How to Be a Successful Entrepreneur Without a Winning Idea
Written for EO by Walker Deibel, an experienced acquisition entrepreneur who has co-founded three startups and acquired seven companies.
Would you rather move a heavy object already in motion or one at rest? If you remember high school science, you’d choose the one with existing forward momentum. Starting a business follows the same principle.
It is much harder to get a new idea rolling than to augment a successful one that has tons of energy. This is one reason so many great ideas never see the light of day. Too many individuals believe they need revolutionary ideas to become entrepreneurs.
While having an idea is exciting, it’s not what makes or breaks a startup. Of small businesses started in 2014, only 56 percent survived four years. The success rate plummets to around one-third by 10 years. A paltry 9 percent can expect to exceed US$1 million in revenue in their first 12 months.
Here’s the raw truth: Ideas do not create successful long-term entrepreneurs. Neither does raising investor capital or selling equity. What separates entrepreneurial winners from wannabes is the ability to run businesses. And when those businesses already have credentials? You can take the results straight to the bank.