Hey Entrepreneur, Reach Out for Help

I’ve talked about it before, but recognizing when you need guidance is vital – in my opinion this is especially true for entrepreneurs who frequently bear the responsibility of making decisions that affect the rest of the team.

Every few months I find myself wrestling with an important business decision – on what will have impacts long into the future. At times like these I find I am rarely standing on solid ground with respect to making an informed decision. When you think about it, this is not surprising. FreshBooks exists in a fast moving space…relatively speaking, technologies and markets turn on a dime on the web. I like that about what we do, but it also means that I find myself trying to solve problems that have either never been solved before, or have only been solved by a small number of people. Gaining access to those people so you can ask them questions about their experiences is priceless, but not always possible – that’s why I collect advisors and try to cultivate long standing relationships with other entrepreneurs.

If you surround yourself with great people, the trick then becomes swallowing your pride and laying yourself bare and revealing that you don’t know the answer. You may have some ideas, but really what you have are questions. If you have the courage to ask those questions, you’ll find that your advisors can steer you in the right direction. It’s been my experience that the best advisors won’t tell you where to go, but they will keep you from going in the wrong direction, and that’s at least half the battle.

So swallow that pride, and turn to someone you think might help – it might even be your competitor. I’m betting you’ll be amazed at how you will be received.

7 thoughts on “Hey Entrepreneur, Reach Out for Help

  1. Hi Mike. I read somewhere that being an entrepreneur can be the lonliest job in the world. I didn’t understand until I started my business. I think it’s great that you recognize the value of good advice. Do you currently mentor up and coming entrepreneurs?

  2. […] Rob just left me a comment over on my blog: Hi Mike. I read somewhere that being an entrepreneur can be the loneliest job in the world. I didn’t understand until I started my business. I think it’s great that you recognize the value of good advice. Do you currently mentor up and coming entrepreneurs? […]

  3. […] Rob just left me a comment over: Hi Mike. I read somewhere that being an entrepreneur can be the loneliest job in the world. I didn’t understand until I started my business. I think it’s great that you recognize the value of good advice. Do you currently mentor up and coming entrepreneurs? […]

  4. Hey Rob, avisors are vital, but the most important for all entrepreneurs is here – http://blog.jitbit.com/2008/02/24-steps-to-success.html (great guide, check it out :-)) )

  5. Mike, I think the advisros idea makes perfect sense and I know the tough feeling of swallowing your pride and asking questions when you know you are not standing on solid turf. One question, from your experisnce what are some of the best ways to incentivize your advisors to be around and contribute?

  6. Hey Robert – great question. My advice would be to seek out people who love business and are pasionate about it – also people who share your values. I often recommend people seek out retired executives.

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