Once you have discovered what your entrepreneurial strengths are, evaluate if there are areas that you aren’t strong in and find ways to compensate for those weak spots. Rich describes a great way to do that here….
If you don’t have all the skills or qualities necessary for success, you can either develop them, hire for them, or partner with team members who have strengths where you have weaknesses. Ron and I chose to team up for that very reason.
I consider myself a better-than-average idea man, but my real strength lies in getting the motor running. I specialize in taking a business from the early stages of unbridled potential and chaotic energy and transforming it into a focused, momentous venture. I make the big idea work. I love to attend to the overall structure and the important to-do items, but once the system is going, I have no desire to go back and slog through the details.
Ron, on the other hand, is the optimizer. After the business has been defined and is off and running, he gets the wheels running smoothly. He specializes in scaling, increasing efficiency, and protecting what has been built. He’s the detail guy.
Together, we make a team. Of course, we sometimes need to overlap, and we each have enough experience to fill each other’s shoes from time to time. We both work on the front end—coming up with new ideas—and on the back end—the dry legal work required as a venture matures. It isn’t about being a one-man show; it’s about recognizing your strengths, and combining them with others to get the job done.
In order to achieve success, you must face your Vishs, your torpedoes, and your purple elephants. This is not an exercise in what is right or wrong. You are who you are. This is an effort to help you understand what you have to offer, how you work, and what drives you forward.
Porter’s Points – Know Yourself
- Practice self-evaluation, honestly and often.
- Don’t shy away from your weaknesses, or your strengths.
- Pinpoint your personalized “purple elephants” and decide not to let them terrorize you.
- You are who you are. Find ways (and people) to work with it.
As you follow these steps to discover your strengths and weaknesses as an entrepreneur, you’ll be better prepared for the tough climb ahead!