I have been blogging about Clayton Christensen for the last week plus. Although I have focused mainly on his tremendous contributions to our personal and professional happiness, I also wanted to highlight some of his entrepreneurial tips for success.
Entrepreneurship is such a challenging, personal, exciting, and complex endeavor. Everyone has an opinion and then some. Christensen however offers some extremely important advice about the entrepreneurs strategy.
Knowing exactly when and how to go to market with your product or service is always a big question. If you go to market too soon, you run the risk of operating a sinking ship because you never completed your research or you are undercapitalized. Go too late and you potentially miss the golden moment of opportunity due to business and economic conditions.
Christensen fully understands these dynamics. Therefore, he encourages a relatively fast, calculated plunge into the market with a wise eye toward revising your strategy as you experience it (How Should You Measure Success?: Clayton Christensen Says to Total Up Your Relationships, Not Your Paychecks Money October 2012, pp. 96-100):
In all probability your initial strategy will fail. So you’d better not spend all your money pursuing the wrong one. What you instead need to do is get out in the market as quickly as you can with the least money possible to figure out, Does this strategy work, or do I need to tweak it? Therefore, you have to be impatient for profits. If you are willing to be patient for profitability, you can pursue the wrong strategy for a very long time. Once you know you will be successful, you can be negative cash flow for a while to grow. (p. 100)
This reminds me of the humorous, sarcastic retort, Don’t just do somethingstand there!
Seriously, I like Christensen’s advice. Start doing something! It is much easier to steer a vehicle that is moving. You can always adjust along the way.
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