10 Business Commandments For Entrepreneurs

10 commandments

If you expect to succeed in the thrill-a-minute, roller coaster ride of a startup, let me assure you it takes more than a good idea, a rich uncle, and luck.

In fact, the idea is often the least important part of the equation. Investors tell me that they look at the people first, the business plan second, and only then at the idea.

If you want some tips to beat the insurmountable odds, take a look at the following concepts, adapted from Richard C. Levy’s book, “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Cashing in On Your Inventions.”

He was talking about inventions, but I think his concepts apply perfectly to any entrepreneur starting a business.

Click here to see 10 business commandments for entrepreneurs >
Martin Zwilling is CEO & Founder of Startup Professionals, Inc.; he also serves as Board Member and Executive in Residence at Callaman Ventures and is an advisory board member for multiple startups. This post was originally published on his blog, and it is republished here with permission.

Don't take yourself too seriously

Don't take your idea too seriously, either. The world will probably survive without your idea. You may need it to survive, but no one else does.

There is no excuse not to love and laugh at what you are doing. I'm convinced that people who love their work are more innovative, as well as happier.

The race is not always for the swift, but for those who keep running

It's a mistake to think anything is made overnight other than baked goods and newspapers. You win some, you lose some, and some are rained out, but always suit up for the game and stick with it.

It's not speed that separates winners from losers; it's perseverance.

You can't do it all by yourself

Entrepreneurial success is almost always the result of unselfish, highly talented, and creative partners and associates willing to face with you the frustrations, rejections, and seemingly open-ended time frames inherent to any business startup.

Keep your ego under control

Creative and inventive people, according to profile, hate to be rejected or criticised for any reason. An out-of-control ego kills more opportunities than anything else.

While entrepreneurs need a healthy ego for body armour, it can quickly get out of hand and become arrogance if not tempered.

You will always miss 100 per cent of the shots you don't take

Don't be afraid to make mistakes. If you don't put forth the effort, you won't fail, but you won't succeed, either.

Inaction will keep opportunities from coming your way.

Don't start a company just for the financial rewards

If you bite the bullet, be prepared to taste gunpowder

Not every idea or decision works. For every action, there is always a criticism.

Odds are, you'll encounter far more criticism than acceptance. Learn from your mistakes, and don't blame someone else.

Learn to take rejection

Believe in yourself

One of the first steps toward success is learning to detect and follow that gleam of light Emerson says flashes across the mind from within.

It's critical that you learn to abide by your own spontaneous impression. Allow nothing to affect the integrity of your mind.

Sell yourself before you sell your ideas

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