Ever heard of Google?
It’s that teensy weensy internet search engine that has become part of our global collective conscience, a unifying force relied on daily thanks to the speed and accuracy with which it delivers exactly what we’re looking for.
Whether you’re searching for carpets in Calgary, a dartboard in Dundee or simply can’t remember who played the hunky male lead in Road House (Patrick Swayze, fact fans), Google’s your friend.
In the main, however, Google’s continued success is down to the ingenuity of Larry Page and Sergey Brin, the two twentysomethings (at that point) with a dream who met at Stanford University in 1995.
Fast forward almost 25 years and Google is the second most valuable company in America—that’s a lot of speedboats, supercars and caviar, my friend—with the company now focusing its research on natural language processing, and neural networks.
However, in order to get to where they are today, Page, Brin and their Google cohorts had to jump over a few hefty hurdles along the way. From education to financing and market share, it was undoubtedly a bumpy road to success …
… so how can YOU leap similar obstacles and win the entrepreneurial race?
Hurdle #1: Grabbing a good education
Critics like Richard Branson have said it’s more important for entrepreneurs to get out there and make a go of a business, instead of enrolling in business school—but there’s still a veritable smorgasbord of benefits to justify enrolling in further education.
For those with a penchant for travel, a return to full-time education at a bricks and mortar institution isn’t ideal. Instead, digital nomads are recognising the benefits of a distance learning degree through providers like Anglia Ruskin Distance Learning, which allows them to see the world while they learn their craft.
Hurdle #2: Doing your research
It’s a well-known fact that around 50 per cent of UK startups fail in the first couple of years, with Theo Paphitis of Dragons’ Den fame claiming that they simply haven’t carried out comprehensive research. It’s rarely just one reason why a business crashes and burns — but a lack of pre-launch prep is one of the main factors.
Interestingly, Paphitis has previously stated that entrepreneurship should be incorporated into the national curriculum from the age of 11, with entrepreneurial skills, in his eyes, being much different from traditional business studies, given that poor academics can sometimes make marvellous moguls.
Hurdle #3: Choosing the right business
Bobby Davro—or perhaps it was Confucius—once said: “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life”. This advice is especially pertinent, as investing your time and money into an uninspiring venture venture is a recipe for failure.
So if you don’t want to be cast as a Richard Branson wannabe without the drive or dinky beard, choose your venture wisely, lest your entrepreneurial empire crumple in a heap of snot and broken dreams.
Do you agree? Do you disagree? What’s the biggest hurdle you’ve had to overcome as an entrepreneur? Let us know by leaving a comment below.