The Entrepreneurial Decision


You were probably the first to open a neighborhood business selling lemonade, your little brother’s action figures, or your family pets. Somewhere along the way, you realized that something inside of you was pushing you to do more. Your friends and immediate environment stopped influencing what you did, and some other force kicked into gear. You knew that you were difference, and so did everyone else. Your mind worked in ways that exhausted those around you. You obsessed over finding new and better ways to build, sell, or market a product or idea. People said that you tired them out – still do in fact, with your “overactive imagination.”

Do you wake up in the middle of the night with earth-shattering ideas? Do new business concepts intrigue you? Does the word entrepreneur excite you? If you can’t throw away your 3 year old pile of business magazines because you are convinced that you’ll need their start-up, business management, or employee benefits articles someday soon, stop dreaming and start doing something about it.

Maybe you’ve already started a small business. Or just wish you had. Well listen, you’re not getting any younger.

Despite the type of invention, services, or venture, you’ve always been the enterprising sort, knowing that one day it would lead t something big. Whether people told you that you were crazy or destined for greatness, you’ve kept dreaming your entrepreneurial dreams. Until now. Now you’re debating taking those dreams a step further – establishing or committing to grow a legitimate, legally sound, hopefully successful business.

You might be hesitant to venture out on your own. And with good reason. The business world can be a jungle for those who are unfamiliar with it. But you can do it. Whether you want to start a small, local business or land on the cover of Forbes one day, your options are wide open. Easier said than done? Maybe. But it happens ever day. When was the last time you went to a newsstand and didn’t see someone under 35 on the cover of at least one business or technology magazine? So whatever your personal circumstances are, there are a lot of stellar entrepreneurs out there who stared with no more money or experience than you have right now. Here are just a few to keep in mind:

  • Michael Dell (Dell computers) used his college dorm room as a storage shed while selling computer disks to fellow students.
  • Frank Carney started Pizza Hut out of a little shack on Wichita State University’s campus because no one else would give him a lease.
  • Paul Orfalea started Kinko’s right out of college in an old building in Santa Barbara that was so small he had to roll the copier out on the sidewalk to fit customers in the store.
  • Seventeen-year-old Fred DeLuca ended his lifelong dream of going to medical school to start a small submarine sandwich shop – now know as Subway.

You wonder if people called them crazy? You can bet on it. But something made these people succeed in business when everyone told them that their dreams were impossible: Determination, perservance, and trial and error. You supply the first two, and I’ll tell you about some other young entrepreneurs whose experiences can help you avoid the errors. So if you really want to build your own business now, and accomplish more than even you can imagine…stay tuned in to our weekly series of excerpts from Jen’s first book the Young Entrepreneur’s Edge.

Next in the Entrepreneur’s Edge Series: Making the Decision to Go the Entrepreneurial Route