Being an entrepreneur is all about ‘doing’, as well as thinking and saying. A successful entrepreneur will certainly do all three.
Oliver West did exactly that , the founder of Minglur.com a conference call service that offers next generation features and free gifts to its users got off his bum and put his thoughts and ideas into practice and never turned back.
According to Oliver, “starting your own business from an idea you have is a truly rewarding experience and certainly the best business move i have made but its also been the longest hours and hardest slog”. This is a common sentiment shared by any successful business owner out there, don’t think that a good idea is enough to make you a millionaire, it takes perseverance, determination, ability, luck and also the ability to ride through the bad times.
Minglur has gone from being a small tech startup from Brighton (read the Mashable article on Minglur or the Guardian article) into an industry disrupting conference call service. They are making waves in the scene because they are offering something different to all their competition, whilst their service is similar to that of others nobody else offers a reward scheme.
Unless you have a truly unique idea that is not easily replicated then you need to have some way of differentiating yourself from the crowd. That is exactly what Minglur have done by rewarding their customers with gifts after they use the service.
We asked Oliver what advice he would give to anyone wishing to start their own business.
“There are obviously quite a few key points to a successful business but most come back to the same point – people. It doesn’t matter if you are a single person business you will want to bring other people on board at some point so it makes sense to start with that in mind.
Plan – be sure your business plan discusses growth and how you will achieve it with the current resources, if extra resource is required then how will you find these people, how much can you afford to pay them and what will their roles and responsibilities be – don’t underestimate this task. Finding staff is easy, finding the ‘right’ staff can be a painfully long and stressful process.
Be nice – what goes around definitely comes around, you will certainly need help along the way and if you’ve been nice to people and helped others out then they are much more likely to help you when it’s needed. I’m not saying you should be false or give flowers and chocolates regularly but making a small effort often pays off later down the line.
Be prepared to fail – before you hit that idea that works you will try some ideas that will fail. You will learn more from these failures than you will from an instant success, as long as you take these learnings within you into your next project you are progressing.
Be weary of trends – just because something is trendy it doesn’t mean you should adopt it. So often people follow the crowd when often its not the right route for them or their business. Think about what that ‘social media platform / advertising medium / imagery / product feature’ does for you or more importantly – your customer, if it provides no real benefit then ignore the trend and focus your efforts on something your user will benefit from.
Be prepared for lots of work and a little amount of play – starting, and running, your own business takes time, lots of it. If you have a family ensure they are aware of the potential time you will be stuck to your laptop or phone. You will need plenty of support through the process and the majority of this should come from those closest to you.”
If you want to make a success of an idea you have then pay close attention to the finer points in this article. Get off your bum and get ‘doing’.
Note: Minglur’s free conference call service allows it users to have group conversations, each member pays for their own call directly to their phone provider, Minglur do not charge you to use their service.