FIVE Magazine YB - VOL2 - Page 13

It’s most often the common-sense questions that people fail to answer honestly that will lead to their downfall and Godse has no shortage of scenarios just off the top of his head. Sometimes people will go ahead with their idea even after they’re advised not to, and it usually ends badly. Often people will make hockey stick projections, overestimate their revenue and underestimate their costs and simply run out of money, or they fail to see that their product only appeals to a niche market and they tap out their customers fairly quickly, or they make up phantom customers who they imagine will be interested but actually find none. Then there are people who don’t think about paying themselves or about the overhead costs just to make the numbers work, and also those who discover too late that they actually don’t know the first thing about managing a business. “Questions can be uncomfortable and people don’t want to answer them honestly but there are real implications to not answering them honestly,” he says. There are many key things to confront at the idea stage that need to pass before you can move along and Godse believes you’re doomed to fail if you think you can skip over that. One of the first things to consider is evaluating your own strengths and weaknesses as an entrepreneur. You might discover that you actually don’t have the talent to run your own business or that you aren’t prepared to make sacrifices and manage the lifestyle that will be required. If your idea is good enough and you have the capital, then you can bring people on board to help you through the process, but that’s simply not realistic for everyone. Another thing to think about is whether you’re solving a real problem or a problem you believe exists and if you are, who are the customers willing to pay for that? Do you have to convince them? How do you reach out to them and how much will that cost? One lesson learned from Bill Johnson, former Chairman and CEO of McDonald’s Canada, is to always know what your customers want and don’t want and if you’re not sure, ask them. When McDonald’s first introduced breakfast, it was a huge success everywhere except for Quebec. After a year and a half of throwing money at the problem VOLUME 1 - ISSUE 2 | yourBusiness Online 13