Principles are a set of guidelines which should govern every aspect of our life, right from building a company up to working on your own confidence. Unfortunately, principles have taken a backseat in today’s fast-moving world. Immediate desires, instant solutions, urgent needs, and cool jugaads have been running the success bandwagon for decades now. But simply because a good thing has been cast out of existence and comprehension, doesn’t mean that one should stop seeking it/them. If it was so, we would have never discovered buried cities, mummified bodies or the Dead Sea scrolls, among countless other things of the past. The point is that without ancient wisdom we are doomed. And principles form an integral part of the wisdom we’ve failed to inherit.
However, the entrepreneurs of today have in them the zest to do things right, not just different. And in order to put their thoughts into action, they need to adopt the following five principles as life’s beacon.
Entrepreneurship is a team effort
A blog entry for druckerforum.com calls it ‘creating a crazy quilt’, ”That means that entrepreneurship is an inherently social process. It is less about genius and vision from extraordinary people than about value creating, mutually beneficial cooperation between normal people.”
Entrepreneurship is a social enterprise, not a solo trip to la-la land. But entrepreneurs often fall for the incorrect notion because their underlying principle is ‘since the idea is mine, the success it brings along, belongs to me alone.’ Such idea is rigged with loopholes and can cause grievances among all those who are directly or indirectly involved with any solipsistic entrepreneur.
Gain the right knowledge
When Elon Musk, Founder, CEO, and CTO of SpaceX; Co-founder, CEO, and Product Architect of Tesla Inc., was asked on the popular Reddit forum called ‘Ask me Anything’, a curious user questioned Musk on how he manages to learn as quickly as he does. Musk’s response was, ”It is important to view knowledge as sort of a semantic tree –make sure you understand the fundamental principles.”
Knowledge is the basis of action. Since your decisions are based directly on the knowledge you possess on something, it’s important for an entrepreneur to keep himself abreast with everything that concerns his or her venture. This not only includes the knowledge of one’s product but more importantly, the knowledge of people.
Respect your employees
According to an article on forbes.com, ”The best employers provide a work environment, not full of perks and extras, but one where each employee feels the organisation and their direct leader respects their dignity and the value of their contributions to the business.”
Respecting your employees can never be an afterthought. It must be a principle. An entrepreneur who disrespects his employees or indulges in favouritism and other petty games, earns only fear in return, not respect.
Call a spade, a spade
Honesty is the best policy. It’s one’s commitment to oneself. Honesty is not a day-saving strategy but a self-respecting characteristic of a person. When honesty becomes a principle, it ensures that your mind is no longer crowded with doubts, that your employees can trust you, not because you do not lie to them but because you don’t lie to yourself.
Do not ignore loved ones. Especially yourself!
Work can buy you things but it cannot buy you time. If your venture has turned you into a possessed beast who cannot think beyond meetings, networking opportunities, and investors, know one thing that burnout is around the corner. Therefore, it’s essential for every entrepreneur to consciously acknowledge that just because you are going to become your own boss, your personal life need not take a toll.
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