Struggles of an Amateur Entrepreneur “101″
It just came out as an idea and turned into a way of living. The word “entrepreneur” has drastically shifted in meaning these days and became something really -but I mean really!- accessible.
It’s one of the good things about the idea of entrepreneurship though. The concept itself has no borders and that’s what makes it so special. In some way, everyone who is eager to offer a new way of easing or solving an existing need is an entrepreneur.
Taking this very concept into consideration by specifically focusing on Istanbulway of entrepreneurship, it should be highlighted that it’s super hyped.
The startup industry has been growing in different environments in Istanbul, and there are different actors in different sectors and aged groups.
It’s another beauty of the idea of entrepreneurship, it has the greatest diversity. Yesterday, I attended an event in which entrepreneurs were sharing their ideas with mentors and there were presenters of literally every age! A kid from high school can kick your ass if it’s about entrepreneurship because ideas and dedication do not depend on age.
Another thing that should be highlighted about Turkish ecosystem is that there are colleges, firms and all other different institutions trying to get their takes from the idea of “startup” industry. As all the support is out there provided for possible entrepreneurs in Istanbul, people do not hesitate to come up with their ideas and try to build their startups.
Turning back to my story which consists of good moments and variety of struggles, I found myself focusing on a startup idea with a couple of close friends approximately a year ago.
The beginning phase is all simple. The energy and enthusiasm are high and everyone is willing to contribute in the best way possible. The very feeling of hope that lays inside has not been disrupted yet, and you have the feeling of “this thing can work out” inside.
I guess the easiest period of trying to be an amateur entrepreneur is the first couple of months because every action taken pays off in some way or another.
There generally nothing so disruptive happens at the first of the times and the importance of taking well-planned actions does not remind itself on the way.
As time passes, the struggles of your journey welcome you one by one and I believe it’s that very moment that you can become a pro instead of an amateur. Whether you decide to cope with your idea’s struggles or not; that’s all that defines you at the end of the day.
I consider myself as an amateur entrepreneur when I take a look at my behaviours on my struggles through the journey. Here they are:
- Especially if you study in college like I do, it’s just wrong to behave your startup as if it’s a school club. It just doesn’t work.
For most of the times, I realized that I was considering my startup as something I do to be productive in my leisure time. It’s nothing like a book club you prefer going when you have the time, startups are more demanding. A mentor for our project was always repeating us: “It’s the corporate life that works 16 hours max. but if you want to build a startup, you should have the guts to work for 24 hours”.
- One should learn to cope with motivation slides. It’s not always sunshine and rainbows in your work, and I realized that I was putting effort when things are good but avoid putting more work when it was the unexpected.
Time might be the most valuable thing we have and one should dedicate his/her time to the idea. If you do not think that your idea doesn’t deserve your valuable time, no one would.
It’s one of the biggest struggles of mine and I still can not do what is necessary. A couple of days ago, I had the chance to meet up with a really qualified mentor to ask for guidance. When we met, I started by introducing myself and concluded my words by saying that I was having a month-long internship at a corporate firm for now. As I shared our idea with all the details, the first thing he asked me was “Why the hell do you spend your time in an internship?”.
He then kept his words going by adding “if you trust your idea, even following the path of college may be nonsense”. In some way, what the mentor said really makes sense because we hear stories of successful businesses which created by those who had decided to drop the college and focus to their the startups hundred percent.
That’s probably another struggle I experience all the time. I definitely do not have the guts of leaving the college to focus on working more on the idea but I recently realized that I have been perceiving the idea of founding a startup as something good for the CV and nothing else.
One thing is sure that these type of entrepreneurial businesses are strengthening your career options for the future but it can also be more than that. It can be your future at the end and that’s what we should keep that in mind!
This is all for now to reflect my amateur experiences in the field. I hope my teammates and I will share the strength and motivation to grow our business and create a better sustainable process for it.
If you have any questions or comments about the path that I try to follow, please do not hesitate to comment below. I will try my best to update this as a series of writing pieces right after I experience more in the field.