Josh Melick has a background in engineering, project management, and sales. Josh co-founded Broadly.com, a mobile small business CRM and messaging platform that he co-founded. Needless to say, Josh knows a thing or two about starting a business. Here are his ten keys to starting an online business:
1. Believe in the Idea
No matter what, you need to believe in your idea enough to give it your all and never look back… If this doesn’t happen, you will fail fast. The one thing I’ve learned from my experience is that when I don’t care or am not passionate about an idea, it doesn’t work.
2. Have the Ability to Learn Fast
You must be able to cut your teeth and learn fast… Nothing can stop you if you have a great product and are willing to learn as you go. You don’t need experience running companies or creating products because that learning curve can be long and painful. You will screw up, so you need to learn from those mistakes and keep moving forward.
3. Start Small, Think Big
Don’t go building a huge company on day one. I consider this the biggest mistake people make when starting an online business: they want to spend $2 million and hire 20 people before producing any revenue. That will never happen; you need to start working on your idea and learn how to sell it. Once you have validated that people want what you are selling, then expand. I always recommend starting small and thinking big… You can always grow into a larger business, but there will be no company if no one is buying your product!
4. Be Patient; Success Does Not Happen Overnight
You must have the ability to be patient and understand that it could take several years for you to build a real business. In my experience, I have found that most start-up ideas don’t work in the first year or two, but if you push through this tough time, you can build a real business that could go on to do great things.
5. Find the Right Team of Advisors and Mentors
You need to surround yourself with intelligent people who have been there before… Hire a few people smarter than yourself and never stop learning from the people around you, especially your mentors. They know what they are talking about, so stay open and always be willing to learn.
6. Be Willing to Sacrifice for Success
You must be willing to give up on some of your hobbies, free time, and nights out on the town for this new business idea. I have sacrificed so much more than I thought was humanly possible… The things you give up are always worth it in the end, but they are tough to deal with at first.
7. Be Willing to Risk it All
You have to be willing to risk it all to succeed… I have risked my house, sold everything I own, and taken out loans just so that I can push forward. But, be prepared for whatever happens because you might need the support of others. When you are pushing your idea forward, you are putting yourself on the line, and you might need a good support system to get you through it.