Many entrepreneurs dream of becoming a serial entrepreneur. You know, types à la Elon Musk who have several successful companies on their record. One key requirement to make it as a serial entrepreneur, is to have a scalable business model. Although there are plenty of other tactics to make it as a serial entrepreneur. Below we highlight three of them!
#1: Build personal relationships in your industry
‘I wouldn’t have gotten anywhere in the airline business without the help and coaching of Sir Freddie Laker, the founder of Laker Airways. You have to find a mentor’ – says Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Airways. And he’s right.
We stress all too often how crucial it is as an entrepreneur to have a network of mentors at your fingertips. More than that, it is the secret weapon of every successful entrepreneur. It’s also why Birdhouse works with a network of mentors.
Your venture stands and falls with strategic alliances with the right people. A good piece of advice at the right time or the chance to work with a seasoned expert in your sector can therefore be serious game-changers.
Don’t lose track of old contacts
In doing so, you can leverage the relationships you’ve gained from one business to launch your next. Instead of sending a cold email to your first prospect, you may simply need to make a few phone calls to bring in customers.
Quality over quantity is key: in such a situation, a LinkedIn network with thousands of connections is not that valuable anymore. A limited but high quality network of roughly 30 talented entrepreneurs – that will take you to the next level.
Approach one entrepreneur who has built the same type of business in the past as what you hope to achieve. Compare in terms of turnover, management, size, vertical, … Send him or her an email and ask straight out what you need and what you can possibly offer in return. Follow the advice you get and evaluate the results you get from it. Don’t be afraid to link back to the person who advised you, they undoubtedly appreciate it.
#2. Bring in the right talent from the start
Recruitment is a tricky issue for many startups. The perfect employee is not there for the taking. As a result, there are countless European entrepreneurs who look beyond their national borders for new recruits. Silicon Valley, for example, is a draw for entrepreneurs looking for the right talent.
Why is it so important to attract the right people right from the start? Well, one of the most important things you have to do as a serial entrepreneur, at some point, is to let go and relinquish your management role. That’s not always easy! But with suitable employees at your side, this becomes considerably easier. You can then be sure that your start-up will not collapse like a house of cards as soon as you start your next project.
Just know that the recruitment process can take a long time. For fledgling startups, it can therefore help to avoid the generic job platforms and focus on niche websites. Use your resources smartly and efficiently. Possibly you can make a call on LinkedIn. And if you can hire someone who knows something about recruitment and selection himself, then that is a bonus of course.
Realize that recruitment and selection is a skill in itself. Reading books, setting up a process and gathering feedback is a good starting point. If you can’t find the time to do that, know that you can outsource those things too.
#3. Adopt an optimistic attitude
Why are so many small businesses going under? The causes are many, although mindset is a very important factor that significantly increases your chances of success. If you want to build a successful business, then you need to train your brain to remain optimistic at all times. Because you can also benefit from obstacles. No, a serial entrepreneur doesn’t usually string one success after another together – certainly not without overcoming a number of obstacles.
Our tip? Read the book “Serial Winner: 5 Actions To Create Your Cycle of Success” by Larry Weidel. It explains how to create a kind of cycle of long-term success, no matter what temporary circumstances arise.
According to Weidel, you should not consider success as an end goal, but rather as the result of certain actions. So by adopting some permanent habits, you can set your own cycle of success in motion.
Consider every obstacle an opportunity. A dissatisfied customer? Call him up and ask – in his own language – what went wrong and how you can still help him. After all, there’s no reason to get bogged down!