Do you have a fire in your belly and nerves of steel? Are you determined enough to take $5,000 and build it into a multimillion dollar business? Rich and I will be the first to tell you that without fire, nerves, and determination (some call this grit), you won’t weather the storms that inevitably accompany entrepreneurship. It is not enough to merely ask yourself tough questions; you must be willing to answer them honestly and act accordingly. Here are a few to start with.
How’s your appetite for entrepreneurship? In this chapter, Rich explains that entrepreneurship isn’t about having all the talents and skills yourself; it’s about how bad you want it. You simply need to assess the attitudes and aptitudes you have, and then either develop the ones you’re missing or partner with people who have them. This, in large part, is how Rich’s and my partnership came to be. We offer distinct but complementary skill sets and talents, but we are the same in one respect: we are hungry for success and we expect to see it.
Does the thought of bootstrapping a business strike fear into your heart and mind? If so, good! Fear can be an incredible motivator. A little terror never hurt an entrepreneur; you simply need to learn to turn terror into triumph.
What about your day job; should you stay or should you go? A lot of people are tethered to the corporate claim that life in the world of big business is more stable than their own venture. When the time comes, are you prepared to cut the lifeline?
How will you survive? The grim fact is 50 percent of new businesses don’t make it. And if yours goes down, it can take your personal life with it. It’s all about timing. Liberation from the corporate myth is exciting, but you don’t want to jump out of the airplane without your parachute on. In the early stages of bootstrapping a business, you might want to keep that day job around for a while. Managing all the demands on your time will take planning, but you can do it.