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Advice to entrepreneurs at each stage of the entrepreneurship process
So, in researching and writing and writing and writing about Emirati Entrepreneurship and working with Emirati students on a daily basis I have come up with some simple advice for each of the four stages of the entrepreneurship process (read my blog post about it is you are curious about that). Although I wrote it with Emiratis in mind, I am sure it will apply to most Wamda readers. So here goes!
There are four basic phases of the process :
1. Recognizing opportunities
2. Assembling resources
3. Launch of venture
4. Harvesting and succeeding
Phase 1: Advice to Aspiring Emirati Entrepreneurs
Live your passion! Don’t just look for opportunities, turn your passion into your own business – this will ensure that you will gladly make the necessary time and effort commitments to turn your dreams into reality.
Become an expert! To overcome your fear of failure and lessen insecurities learn all that you can about your new business idea. Research on the internet, talk with experts, read biographies of successful entrepreneurs and learn all you can about your chosen industry on an international, regional and local level.
Find a mentor! Whenever we try something new it helps to have someone to turn to for advice and motivation. Find a mentor at school, at work, in your family or in the community. Attend local events organized for entrepreneurs and volunteer in the community to expand your network.
Phase 2: Advice to Budding Emirati Entrepreneurs
Don’t give up! The road to success is a long one and often full of challenges we don’t expect. But, if you believe in your idea and know your stuff, don’t let the challenges stop you – learn from them to better prepare for whatever life throws your way.
Seek advice from experts! Although we might not find an ideal mentor everyday, we can and will encounter people who would be willing to share their experiences with us. We can also read profiles of successful entrepreneurs and attend events where our entrepreneurs will be speaking – seek and you shall find!
Use your networks! We all have networks and sometimes we might be shy to ask people for advice when starting up a new venture. Don’t be shy, the worst that can happen is the person will not be able to help you, but they might or might direct you to someone who can help.
Phase 3: Advice to New Entrepreneurs
Watch your cash flow! In the early days there will be more cash flow out than in – but that is no excuse not to keep careful records and to watch your fils!
Listen to your customers and suppliers! Be a hands on owner and get to know your customers and your suppliers – they are your source of ideas for improvements, new products and services and also can tell you what your competition is up to!
Look for support! You are not alone, there are many organizations out there to help you. Look to your local Chamber of Commerce for training programs, local entrepreneurship agencies of women centres for support from fellow entrepreneurs.
Phase 4: Advice for Established Entrepreneurs
Be creative! There are many ways to expand your product/service line. Think “outside the box” for complementary industries or where your unique goods could be adapted for new uses.
Take calculated risks! Once we have established ourselves and have found our “comfort zone” in our operations we might not know what to do. Consider all options, do your research and take risks if you feel prepared and ready for growth!
Look for international opportunities! In the global scale the UAE is a small market – but look at where we are positioned! At the cross-roads of burgeoning markets, with access to over 200 nationalities on a local scale we can test our products at home before heading abroad!
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