Entering the market as a newbie entrepreneur is a brave step, and having your family and friends share in your vision for success is critical. Once you have convinced them that being an entrepreneur is in fact “a real job” – one that requires a lot more sacrifices and hard work than a salaried worker – you can continue to encourage them to support your journey, to ultimately share in your success.
Get a job
In some communities, being an entrepreneur is not recognised as a profession. Therefore, those who pursue enterprise development are seen as irresponsible or lazy as it is not regarded as ‘real’ employment. Societal pressure to attain certain material possessions thus prevents them from pursuing their true passion.
This kind of resistance discourages a lot of entrepreneurs, making their pursuit for success even more difficult.
Finding out who your real friends are
Financial support is the most obvious support needed by entrepreneurs due to a lack of capital and start-up funding, as well as irregular payments and long periods of being cashless due to procurement holdups and fluctuation in the market for your product or service. Not everyone will stick with you in these times – and that’s OK. You may end up finding out who your real friends are, and these are the people who will give you emotional and social support to keep you focused and motivated.
“I know a guy….”
Another issue is friends and family looking for discounted prices as they know the owner. This means that they don’t see the value of the product or service, nor do they respect the owner. By asking for products and services for free, or at a reduced price, they end up taking advantage of their relationship with the entrepreneur and do not financially support his/her the business.
So, if you have friends or family who are business owners, set an example by supporting them in the following ways:
- Be willing to pay the full price of the product or service offered.
- Be kind when giving negative feedback – make sure it is constructive.
- Compliment them on good products or service. Share positive reviews on your social media pages.
- Share and promote their business among other people.
- Be patient and willing to help them establish their businesses.
Be prepared to listen to their dreams, hopes and frustrations. Sometimes, they just need an ear to vent about a bad day. Support them with a word of encouragement to keep going.