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Things I wish I had known before starting IT consultancy business

Naive optimism is what I call it when someone with little experience starts a business, and it can be essential ingredient for someone to take a leap off the cliff and start a new venture. I think most successful entrepreneurs if they knew what they had to go through in terms of sacrifices wouldn't do the journey again if they were offered it. It is incredibly taxing on your mojo to still want to get up in the morning after +50 rejections.....Failure is a horrible word that most people find difficult to swallow. The older you get the more scary that journey becomes as you have more to lose......there is a big difference between starting something at 21 when still living off mum/dad or giving up a £120K job and a steady career. Normally one of two things happen......someone has a great idea and they decide to pursue it, but that is the minority. The second and more likely reason is they get fed up with the politics at work, the hours, feel like their career is not going anywhere so they decide to have a crack on their own.

9 out 10 times within 24 months the people go back to a regular job and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that because the life of an entrepreneur is not everyone's cup of tea. There is a lot of uncertainty, risk, no money, and plenty of other factors that can give you sleepless nights. Here is a list of things I wish I had known beforehand.

  1. All my career I had been working in IT so I didn't know anything about selling......when you start your own IT consultancy it is all about selling unless you have a big alumni network where people can refer you. So my advice is go get some sales experience before starting your own business

  2. There is a big difference between being an IT leader and a consultant. I would recommend you get some consultancy experience prior to starting one.

  3. Mentoring. Find a group of people who can add different aspects to your business and don't be afraid to use them to help coach you but also recommend you to their network

  4. Pride doesn't help a young start up. Get off your pedestal, this is no longer the big warm fuzzy corporate world. During the day you will have been a cleaning lady, receptionist, PA, IT helpdesk person, sales person, business owner, and many other roles you need to play when working for yourself.

  5. Flexibility and quick adoption.....most people when they start something they think its the idea that is important. Wrong! it is the execution that is key. There are a ton of brilliant ideas that never got off the ground, and then were plenty of mediocre ideas that became successful businesses due to priceless execution.

To be continued.......

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