The Reality Behind the Cap
Ok, so let's be clear, before we get into this blog post and its episode, let's go over some things, right quick.
Entrepreneurship is a bittersweet journey, that is not for the faint of heart.
Whether you begin your entrepreneurship journey today, tomorrow or you started years ago—it 👏🏾 is 👏🏾 no👏🏾 joke!
We know the headline of this blog caught your eye, but before you hit us in the comments with counter arguments, know this...
This is blog post & podcast episode strip away the glitz and glamour of entrepreneurship as shown on social media and informs you of the REALITY of how it really is.
Let's be real. We've all seen the "lavish-life-entrepreneur" posts plastered are all over social media platforms.
There is usually a beautiful caramel or chocolate person flashing their pearly white teeth with a huge smile as they board a private jet. Signature Louis Vuitton luggage, the full set, surrounds them and there is champagne being poured as they make their way down the tarmac.
This entire flashy scene makes their followers think, "Wow, I want that."
Before you make that decision to enter the world of entrepreneurship, take a moment and realize this. Every single day of entrepreneurship is NOT like this.
There are days when you barely want to go and on no matter what the money is and isn't giving.
There are days when you realize that you are alone because your friends, family, spouse, no one close to you gets it. They don't understand your journey.
So you feel alone and deal with the challenge of entrepreneurship alone and continue one painful step at a time.
If this is you, I have good news. You no longer have to do entrepreneurship alone!
Would you like to stop doing entrepreneurship alone? If yes, then join, connect & grow w/the ONLY online community of entrepreneurs that meets every morning, Monday - Friday, at 8AM - 9AM - The Morning Meetup.
👇🏾 Click below to join! 👇🏾
Now that we've got the disclaimer and advertisement out of the way, grab your pen, journal and let's get into the episode.
Table of Knowledge
1. "It's really hard..."
She and her team were setting up a new program and due to a malfunction, some people who made a purchase, even though their card declined due to insufficient funds, got a confirmation email as if the payment were successful.
Then, because she had an appointment that cancelled, so she scheduled another meeting. While getting into her truck, she hit her head, causing a headache to start. Her meeting was only fifteen minutes away, but due to traffic, it took her an extra hour to get there. She didn't have time to stop for headache medicine. She had to carry on through her meeting, headache and all. After the meeting, she was looking forward to getting something to eat and some medicine, but got a text from David confirming their pickup shoot scheduled for today. The call time was less than two hours away.
That is how life goes with this "entrepreneurship" thing.
That is why David started the list with this statement. Entrepreneurship is hard. No one tells you just how difficult entrepreneurship is. Not only is it hard to get started, it's even more difficult to start and maintain momentum.
1a. Entrepreneurship growth is gradual.
The small wins will make you think you are on your way and then the
next week you get nothing. How long you remain in the "nothing"
phase is in direct correlation to how much work you put in.
1b. Once you get it, it's hard to keep.
When you do get rolling with momentum, it's challenging to
maintain and keep.
Solution Strategy: Keep putting in the work. Keep your content fresh. Know all the factors that affect your brand. Create a strategy of sustainability during times of downward momentum. Look you at your trends and plan accordingly.
2. "It's emotionally draining..."
You pick up momentum for three months, the operation budget is looking good, so you onboard people to help because things are popping in your workflow.
But you dip into a slow season, and now things are tight.
You look into the faces of the dedicated team members you've just hired and you sigh. You know you have to make a decision. Which contractor will remain, if any, because you cannot afford to keep them all.
Or here's another one.
What if you get a tremendous burst of success and then it's all taken from you?
There is nothing worse than tasting success and have it taken away due to circumstances outside of your control.
That is what entrepreneurship is.
3. "The lack of consistent income..."
If you are working a 9-5 and you like the consistent pay every other Friday, then entrepreneurship is not for you.
There are often delays in payment coming from clients and sometimes, if you are not careful, you will not get paid at all.
But if you work on a 9-5 and your check is short, until the error is fixed, you may refuse to continue working.
You can't stop working because there is no money coming in, you have to keep grinding.
As a matter of fact, you have to level-up your efforts when nobody is buying.
Then, once you do make money, you have to allocate the funds properly. That money your business brings in isn't yours.
You have to pay out your costs to staff, the systems you have to help you sell or perform your service, the staff and other expenses have to be paid first before you pay yourself.
The financial component of entrepreneurship is not what you think it is. The actual work you have to do to make a substantial amount money is not worth it.
4. "The freedom & flexibility you think you have isn't a reality"
Picture this: you are on a beach, the sun is shining, you've just gotten your tropical flavored beverage and your phone, that you wanted to keep off for your trip, is ringing back-to-back.
You answer the phone, it's your ops manager. They know what to do in your absence, but you instructed them to contact you only if it there is an emergency.
There is an emergency, your website crashed.
You just launched a new digital product and because people can't access the product after they buy it, the chargebacks begin. Then the purchases slow down. Before they stop completely, you have to take action and do something.
You look at your vacation, Bae or significant other and apologize as you grab your laptop and phone and fix the issue.
When you work a 9-5 when you put in for your vacation, then your work won't bother you, because the company is aware that you are off.
Not with entrepreneurship, you have to handle it.
You have to go back to the hotel room and leave vacation Bae at the beach. They are now disappointed because you have prioritized your business before them.
The situation is tough, it's real—it's entrepreneurship.
"As an entrepreneur, your client's emergency becomes YOUR emergency." - Donni Wiggins
5. "You can't do it all on your own."
You have to deal with people. They run your life as an entrepreneur. You're responsible for the happiness of your staff and clients.
Whether you were involved in a decision or not, it's on you.
Solution Strategy: Make sure you properly vet anyone that will associate with your brand or business in any capacity. Realize this, good, bad or indifferent, it all falls on you.
You know when this doesn't happen? When you work for a company full-time. The responsibility falls on the business. They take the loss. When it's your business, the loss is all yours.
6. "You have to pay, anyway."
When you have a product service or any type of offer that you are launching, if it works or not, you still have to pay your team.
For example, what if you do an in-person event and you expect twenty-five people to show but only five come? Then you still have to perform.
Also, your marketing team and sales team still have to be paid. Whether it's feast or famine you have are left holding the bag.
Solution Strategy: Basically, the show must go on. Give you all and show appreciation to your staff and to the five or one person who came to your event! Keep going, you will get a return on your investment.
7. "You get what you pay for."
You have to invest. If you want business to grow, you have to pay to invest in yourself.
It may seem like more is going out than coming in, but that is what you have to do.
When you work a job, then the company invests in all the development ventures. Your training, uniform and payment are all on their tab.
Solution Strategy: Go to the masterminds and groups that will elevate you and your team to the next level.
8. "There are no trophies or rewards."
In entrepreneurship, there is no recognition. You can hit a landmark and no one notices.
David & Donni reached one million episode downloads recently, and no one noticed. There was no cake, streamers, party or anything.
Solution Strategy: If you are seeking validation and accolades, go on ahead and activate your social security card and get on somebody else's payroll.
9. "Don't be an entrepreneur if you think Instagram is real life."
Like it's stated in the intro—a false perception of the "entrepreneur-lavish-life" gets folks messed up ALL the time.
There are some wonderful days, but not every day is that way.
Also, speaking of social media, as an entrepreneur, your strategy is completely different. David states entrepreneurs can't enjoy social media. It's a tool for us. We have to make sure we give our community what they want and stay relevant.
When you work for someone, you don't have to be responsible for the social media content and strategy, which is a full-time job within itself.
Solution Strategy: Take everyday as a learning experience. Each step is necessary on your journey.
10. "When you fail, everybody gets a front row to your failure."
If you've ever have to close your doors or business, then you know lived this. Unfortunately everyone learns about it.
The crazy thing is that there are people, haters, who highly anticipate your downfall.
When you work on a job get fired, that's when you get love! If you post about it on social media, people come out of the woodwork to help you.
But when entrepreneurs fail, we get told, "I knew that wasn't going to work!"
We. Get. No. Love!
It also goes on the other end of the spectrum, if an entrepreneur makes 10K in a day and want to share the news on social media, then criticism ensues.
Entrepreneurs can't win for nothing!
Solution Strategy: Laugh through it all. It's the medicine that will keep you going. Realize that you are not alone, of entrepreneurs that can relate.