Preparing to become a successful entrepreneur

Prepare to put in a lot of elbow grease

Entrepreneurship is a pretty appealing concept.

Working for yourself, whenever you want, without a boss telling you when/where you have to be? Sounds pretty good. And with the rise of technological innovation, the opportunity for starting your own business has never been more accessible.

Still, though, becoming an entrepreneur is an incredibly taxing process because of the devotion you have to place in yourself and your business skills. If you can pull it off, chances are that you will be rewarded with a higher level of satisfaction and, of course, a more appealing bank account.

However, keep in mind that in the world of entrepreneurship that society rarely pays attention to those who don’t make it. And for every successful start-up, there are countless who don’t make it.

The reasons could be one of many, but what’s important is that you recognize what you can do now or right after college to increase your chances of success should you decide to go down the entrepreneurship route.

Here are a few paths to start exploring if you plan to be a successful entrepreneur:

Round out your education

It’s important for you to understand that being a successful entrepreneur has to go well beyond just knowing how to do one type of work (i.e., being a technician).

You have to understand the other aspects that go into running a business, such as knowing how to operate your finances appropriately and putting yourself in a position where you are thinking about the long-term viability of your business as opposed to just making sure you’re operating at a profitable level on a day-to-day business. Before starting your business, take classes, read articles, interview successful entrepreneurs, etc., to learn how to increase your chances of success.

Get comfortable paying for failure

Building up a “failure fund”—also known as an emergency fund—should be a key priority as you start planning to build a business. It’s a good idea to have at least 3 to 6 months of “failure” covered, but obviously the more you can save, the longer you can keep funding your entrepreneur life.

As far as raising cash to make your business work, there are a few approaches you can try.

On one hand, you might try reaching out to the community and trying to fundraise (the internet has been a big help to those who have tried this route via Kickstarter, MicroVentures, etc.).

You might also want to—or need to—take on a regular full time job and work on your business after hours. If your goal is to be your own boss and set your own schedule, then working for somebody else for a time might be helpful in getting your feet off the ground—not to mention there’s a good likelihood of having employer-sponsored healthcare.

Either way, having the emergency fund will enable you to try multiple ideas (or multiple avenues with the same idea) and can prolong the amount of failure that you experience in being an entrepreneur.

Do your research

This may seem way too simple, but it’s important that you collect as much data as you can on your idea to make sure that it’s something the market wants. Being more prepared with your research will increase your likelihood of getting additional outside funding to help and will also help keep away those who are ready to tell you they knew your idea wouldn’t work.

Channel your inner Buddha

Develop a positive, but realistic, mindset. We want you to understand the effect finances can have on your daily life. In entrepreneurship, it’s important to develop a positive attitude to combat the setbacks, detractors, and other negative experiences that will come about during your career.

We also encourage you to find at least one trustworthy mentor to help keep you in check. Being a successful entrepreneur means knowing when it’s time to move on from something that’s not working and if you’re not being realistic with how things are going, you are putting yourself in a dangerous position. Having somebody else to talk to, who you trust, will help keep you in line.

We’re here for you

If you have any questions about what you can do with your finances to help increase your chances of success, feel free to email us at And while we appreciate you reading this article, we hope that you’ll keep looking for other resources to help you on your journey towards building your own successful business.