The Challenges of an Entrepreneur

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The field of entrepreneurship has become an ever-evolving entity. What it was twenty years ago, even five years ago, is not the same of what it is today. For many, these new forces do not simply just make the game harder to play, but the overall chances for success that much more difficult.

To start off, many people have a very misinterpreted understanding of the reality of an entrepreneur. The glamour of the Silicon Valley tech bubble or the superstardom of business gurus like Mark Cuban forces the public to fantasize with the idea of being your own boss. As great as the title may be, the time, effort, and sacrifice needed to ‘be your own boss’ is something that is overlooked and unnoticed. It’s like what Mr. Cuban has said, “You need to work like there is someone working twenty-four hours a day to take it all away from you.”

As an entrepreneur, the challenges of building the foundation of your company take a large amount of effort and sacrifice. Starting off, the overall profession, in itself, can be isolating and lonely, especially during the beginning stages of your startup. While your friends and former co-workers have the luxury of leaving at 5 pm or attending happy hours after work, much of an entrepreneur’s time is dedicated in building and shaping their business. Their hours are not capped to that of society’s standards. Instead, every waking-minute is an opportunity for them to improve their company for their future. While it may seem like their business is a dark and troublesome obsession, the drive itself becomes more of a passion that is necessary in getting their startup over the hump of startup to company.

Now even when your company is over that hump, the overarching challenges do not stop there. Yes, some may pat themselves on the back for achieving a daring feat of making it this far. But for true business leaders and successful entrepreneurs, they look to the future. One of the biggest challenges that many entrepreneurs have at this point is the comparison syndrome. The comparison syndrome, to put it simply, is the act of evaluating and comparing your company with your competitors or other startup companies. This mentality often leads to mistakes and second-guessed decisions. While you should be aware of your competition, comparing your business success with others can be quite damaging for the mental and morale of an individual. As an entrepreneur, you need to be open-minded and strategic with your mindset. You need to go beyond the validations of others and look to create something based off of your vision and goals. Only then will you be able to see success.

But even if they are able to create an intuitive product, the question becomes how can you recreate and improve that product time and time again. Remember, this is still a business. You can only go so far with the same idea each and every time. Take for example Facebook. The entire design and interface of the site has changed dramatically since it launched in the early 2000s. It even continues to tweak and change its model every few months so that it can be up-to-date with the times today. As an entrepreneur, creating the company will always be your biggest hurdle. But your second biggest hurdle will be how you can recreate it again and again.

Now while these challenges may sound daunting, they should never prevent you from following your dreams as an entrepreneur. Remember, the only shots you miss are the shots you don’t take. While it will never be easy starting off, your grit and your drive will be the true game changer in creating a stronger and more impactful future.

Source – http://jgotra.com/the-challenges-of-an-entrepreneur/

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What defines a Leader?

The definition of leadership is often subjective. Every business owner and CEO wants to of course exemplify the necessary characteristics of a good leader. But how can you be a good leader if there is no centralized definition?

The answer is simple and complex at the same time. Leadership does not have that one size fits all definition. Instead, it encompasses a variety of ideas, examples, and traits that make up a good leader. For many people, this can often times be confusing and downright vexing. But at the end of the day, it provides us with an understanding of who do we need to be at the workplace.

The one thing you need to note is that while it may be difficult conceptualizing a straightforward definition of a leader, we know a variety of examples of what a leader is not. The seniority or hierarchy of a company does not define a leader. Nor do a personal title, personal attributes, or managerial style embody leadership. Rather, a leader is a vision. They are individuals who see problems that need to be fixed and goals that need to be achieved. They manage with intent and attack with a clear target in mind. In doing so, they are able to educate, inspire, and motivate themselves and others to reach individual and company goals.

So what is a leader?

At the end of the day, a leader provides an inner sense of drive and commitment for their company. They are the ones who know how to optimize the strengths of their workers and improve upon the weaknesses of a company. They are the people that, at the end of the day, you can count on.

While the definition of a strong and transformative leader may vary, these individuals encompass similar traits that make them stand out amongst the crowd. These are individuals who have integrity and honesty. They see people and human beings and try to inspire and encourage them to move to the next level. These are individuals who are confident. They know how to make those hard-hitting decisions, but are methodical in their thinking. Last but not least, these are individuals who are positive. They understand the high moments and the low moments and the necessary steps to improve morale.

As a CEO and leader of my company, Alliance Security, I internalize the true meaning of leadership each and every day. In order to establish that efficient, effective, and consistent working environment, I try to be the person that my employees expect from me. Because of this, I am constantly changing as an individual and as a leader. I am constantly reflecting on the needs and objectives of my employees. For those of you who are looking to make that impact within your work environments, recognize the importance of these values and understand what you need to do so that you can succeed at your goals.

Sourcehttp://jaygotra.net/what-defines-a-leader/

Alliance Security Takes on ALS Ice Bucket Challenge With a Different Approach

WARWICK, RI — Alliance Security has added its name to the list of participants in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, and is calling out the entire community to follow suit.

Here’s the twist: Alliance will take care of the $10 donation to The ALS Association (Rhode Island Chapter) on behalf of anyone who accepts the challenge. Participants are asked to share their videos on social media and use #AllianceSecurity and #IceBucketChallenge.

We were planning on making a contribution in support of the cause, and figured tapping into the ice-bucketing craze would be a good way to get more people talking about this terrible disease,” said Alliance Security COO Brian Fabiano, whose family member was diagnosed with ALS six months ago.

On Friday morning, 150 of Alliance’s employees along with company executives convened in the parking lot of their Warwick location, and took on the challenge of pouring a bucket of ice water on their heads to raise money and awareness for ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), which is commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

About his company’s unique approach to the cold-water dare, Fabiano continued, “More participants who step up to the plate means increased awareness among their friends and loved ones, and that’s what we care about.”

According to The ALS Association, approximately 5,600 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with ALS each year. “That may seem like a small number in the grand scheme of things, but I can tell you that ALS has touched me personally, so it’s important to know that we’re all at risk,” added Fabiano.

Alliance Security—which operates in 35 states throughout the country and is headquartered in Rhode Island—has helped protect homeowners and their loved ones through the installation and monitoring of home security systems over the past 11 years. For more information, visit www.alliancesecurity.com.

Sourcehttp://www.risbj.com/alliance-security-takes-on-als-ice-bucket-challenge-with-a-different-approach/

The Sacrifices of a Leader

Being a business leader can be a rewarding experience. But it can also be filled with various challenges. At times, people have this false assumption that these individuals can fulfill the ‘hero’ role in various situations. As much as we can believe that, we need to be tangible and understand that a true leader is someone that is able to handle difficult tasks. It is these sacrifices that truly represent a strong business leader. Without it, the success, goals, and overall vision of a company become lost.

Let’s start off by examining the arduous decisions business leaders need to make on the day-to-day basis. For many people, they are unable to conceptualize the risk of putting thousands, maybe millions, of dollars all solely on a deal. For business leaders, especially CEOs, decisions like these aren’t just asked, but decided almost each and every day. To do this, they spend an inordinate amount of time and a tremendous amount of energy making choices between equally attractive options in everyday situations. The main problem of course is the tradeoff, or ‘catch’ if you will. No matter what, you cannot have your cake and eat it too. Because of this simple childish slogan, business leaders need to be well aware of the ramifications their decisions make on their company and their employees. One simple mistake could impact the livelihood of hundred and thousands of people.

Outside of making decisions, business leaders need to be reflective. For many people, they go to their jobs each and every day without a care in their minds. For true leaders within the work place, they go into their companies with the intention to resell their visions to their employees, especially if the company is going through big and drastic changes. For any type of changes, even minor ones, you will always find backlash from some of your employees. The worst mistake business leaders can make is if they ignore it. True leaders acknowledge the problems and weaknesses of their business. They understand the negative perspective of their employees and try to spark that fire once again. While of course it is easier said than done, the task to inspire and reinvigorate your company’s values is something that takes a strong amount of effort.

Now of course, there will always be individuals in the workplace who will always and forever follow you into the dark. As much as business leaders can provide them with more leeway, they, as leaders of a company, should always avoid favoritism. This idea can be particular difficult, especially if family or friends are involved. But for a company to succeed, a business leader need to make sure that everyone is playing their role. While some portion of favoritism can be motivational, other points can be a killer at the workplace. Make sure you are aware of your actions. This itself can provide the overall place you are looking for when cultivating a strong and conducive work environment.

Now a business leader isn’t a true leader if there is no balance within authority. While you may be the boss, you want to make sure that you are respected and open-minded to your workers. At times, many CEOs or supervisors have been criticized to be too authoritative with their workers. This leads to low work morale and a low retention rate. To benefit your company, try and find that balance. True business leaders make sure to listen and respect their employees. Just because you have a higher title does not mean you cannot learn from those under you. Remember, a true leader is one who is humble enough to admit their flaws. To inspire action and success, you need to become more than just the authority. You need to be the voice that echoes their future.

Source – http://jaygotra.net/the-sacrifices-of-a-leader/

5 Effective Ways to Increase the Employee Turnover

After ensuring that employee turnover is an important factor, in the success of the organization, so here are some of the ways, which can help you in retaining the potential employees in your company:

  1. Employee Recognition:

Every employee seeks a valuable recognition. The manager can send the “Thank You” message to the employees or can call a meeting for appreciating the work, which they have done so far for the company. You can also ask for a feedback from them for the company culture or policies.

  1. Share personal experiences timely:

It is not possible to have a daily communication with every employee of the company, so that everybody can know each other personally. So the best way is to have timely get together or meetings, where everybody can get the chance to share his likes and dislikes, where one can share what he had for dinner last night. In this way the relationship between manager and peers can be encouraged.

  1. Avail them productivity tools:

No job is so easy, this is the reason they are called work. Every employee must have a tool through which he can ensure his productivity. The powerful hardware, software and apps must be provided at no cost to them, where they can track their billable hours easily. Even for a particular project, human resource documents and for sharing the documents, the employees must have the access to all of the utility tools.

  1. Offer them the Competitive Benefit Packages:

Since we are here due to our employees, so offering them some of the beneficial and attractive packages can be one of the best ideas to retain them. The health insurance, flexible working hours, disability in life, etc. can make a huge difference in their performance.

  1. Volunteer Commitment:

The company can ask to their employees, to stay for a certain period of time at their position in the company. Even by asking for such a favor where you can be assured as the guaranteed employee for at least aforesaid period of time, so as on the other hand the employee can also be ensured for his guaranteed employment without breaking certain mentioned clauses.

Related Article – http://pbn.com/Five-Questions-With-Jay-Gotra,94842

Source – http://providence.storeboard.com/blogs/employment/5–effective-ways-to-increase-the-employee-turnover/658475

Entrepreneurship 101: the Perfect Candidate for Your Team

Henry Ford once said that, “coming together is a beginning, staying together is a progress, and working together is a success.” Whether you are taking a managerial position or embarking on the journey as an entrepreneur, building success from the ground up is not an easy task. To help mitigate any conflicts or problems, it is vital that you establish a team that will support your goals and endeavors every step of the way. At the end of the day, unity is strength. When there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved. The one thing you can do to control this is the screening process for future employees.

When interviewing candidates, make sure you thoroughly analyze them personally and professionally. Prompt them to speak about their past achievements and professional work experience. In addition, have them highlight their strengths, weaknesses, and future goals, whether that is personal or professional. Do not be afraid to pry. Remember, you are looking for an individual who can work well within your cohesive and goal oriented culture. To make sure that happens, try asking various hypothetical and logical questions so that you can fully evaluate whether or not they possess the personal and professional drive that can lead your company to its goals.

“If you want to go fast, go alone, if you want to go far, go together.”

Below, you will find five key characteristics a hiring manager should look for when finding the perfect candidate. Looking at these six will help you discovery certain game changers that can adapt, innovate, and drive your company to the next level.

1. Long Term Investment

When interviewing a candidate, try and gauge not just whether the candidate can perform at the expectations of the position, but also whether the applicant is willing to stay at the company for a long period of time. The biggest downfall you can see in any business is the turnover rate on a monthly and annual scale. As much as it can impact the company financially, such as the training cost and time used to coach new employees, it can also affect the company culturally. To prevent this from happening, try and understand the candidate’s professional experience and overall goals. Be sure to ask those overarching questions such as: Where do you see your self in five years? By asking these types of questions, it can make the difference from a person who will stay one year or the next thirty years.

2. Team-Player

At the end of the day, you want your fellow co-workers working as a well-oiled machine. Finding an individual who can represent the collectiveness, vision, and ambition within the workplace can make all the difference in every situation. Even if the position asks for the person to work autonomously, you want to make sure the person is still willing to help out for the betterment of the team. When interviewing a candidate, ask questions of how they worked in groups. Furthermore, dive deeper by asking specific situational examples of a time where they had a problem with an individual and how the problem was resolved. Remember, you want to make sure that the person is willing to put their pride on the side in order for the team to reach their goals. Attaining that, “all for one and one for all,” mentality will allow you to find an individual who can work not just independently, but also within a framework of a team.

3. Passion

This is often difficult to assess. At times, people have their own volition’s of why they want a specific job. Your job, in turn, is to find the truth. When looking for an ideal candidate, try and gauge why they want to work for your company. Ask what excites them about the position and what they are looking forward in the future. Through these answers, try and assess the ones that show a high level of passion and enthusiasm. In any work place, passion and enthusiasm are two key components in developing the overall work culture at the office. People who come in with a positive attitude are often found to be more committed to the company and provide more to the work environment.

4. Drive & Ambition

“The only time success comes before work is in the dictionary.” Every business wants to hire driven and motivated professionals. It is these individuals that are willing to go above and beyond what is asked from them. Finding this type of caliber can be difficult in the sense that they are a demanding brand. Because of this, try and offer strong incentives such as salary or benefits to sway the person. For a business to thrive, you do not just want a person who can work the 9-to-5 grind, but a leader who wants to improve each and every day.

5. Results

When investing in a new candidate, you want to take into consideration the amount of time and money used to develop these individuals to perform the daily task asked at the most efficient, effective, and consistent level possible. Because of this, you want to make sure the person is able to deliver results. This does not simply mean succeeding at the average level. Rather this is the idea of putting skills into action. After the training learning curve, it is imperative that your new employee can meet those expectations. When questioning a candidate, ask about their success. Have them tell you their proudest achievement.

Source – http://jgotra.com/entrepreneurship-101-the-perfect-candidate-for-your-team/

 

The Mind of an Entrepreneur

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Whether you have are launching your own personal venture or expanding on an already existing business, one of the most pressing priorities you will need to do as a business leader is to develop and strengthen your entrepreneurial mindset. As an entrepreneur, building a business takes a large amount of time, work, and sacrifice. While draining as it can be, the end result is always worth it. But for this to be done you need to develop an attitude that embraces the overall risk and initiatives involved when becoming your own boss.

So who do you need to become? What do you have to change when running your own business?

In reality, that question changes on a daily basis depending on the situation. But the overall holistic characteristicand definition of an entrepreneur is an individual who is a visionary leader that believes in the impossible and is willing to risk, aggravate, or influence a market with a passion in creating a new and opportunistic change into an already stale system. Furthermore, entrepreneurs face an innate ability to survive. For them, any decision, any choice takes time. They not only see paths and avenues of how it can benefit them personally, but also their company and their employees financially and individually. Regardless of what the outcome is, entrepreneurs accept and adapt to these challenging decisions and take full responsibility for better or for worst.

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This might sound like an ambitious persona, but that is what it takes to a true and successful business leader within your company. Below, you will find five habits that cultivate the overall mindset of a successful entrepreneur. If this sounds like you, great! If not, that is okay. To be at this level takes time. All you need to do is learn from yourself.

Learn from Failure and Move On

“I haven’t failed. I just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” ~ Thomas Edison

One of my favorites says is, “Do not look at failure as a disappointment, but as an opportunity for success.” While failure and disappointment can be difficult, see this as a positive. Instead of being ashamed of the problem and mishap that you have made, seek valuable lessons from those events. Use those times as a foundation for you to learn from your mistakes. Bare in mind, many successful entrepreneurs have made the same mistakes as you. The only difference is what you are able to do with them.

Stand Out

No, you do not have to be the verbose extrovert you see with Mark Cuban or Steve Jobs. While those personal skills are beneficial, true successful entrepreneurs stand out by embracing their uniqueness. Celebrate what makes you and your company different. Stand out from the crowd and differentiate from your competitors. Think about Steve Jobs’ journey to success. While Windows already saturated a popular and loyal market, Jobs continued to follow his dreams. He even pushed the limits with the music and entertainment industry. If he did not do that, we would not have the innovative technology that is accessible to the public today.

Embrace Life-Long Learning

“If you stop learning, you stop creating history. Eventually you become history.”

The quickest way to stagnation is to be unopened and close-minded to new modes of thinking. As an entrepreneur, you are defined by your ability to adapt to change. To adjust to change is not accepting and moving on. Instead it is learning the new expectations that can lead to success under the new conditions. This is important because at the end of the day, the public’s interest today will be incredibly different from a year from now (five years from now, ten years from now). To succeed with your business, you need to reinvent yourself and in order to do that you need to be in a constant state of learning. This type of education will allow you to grow both personally and professions as you continue to impact your company in a variety of ways.

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Set Short-Term and Long-Term Goals

“If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you.”

Goal setting is another way for you to both inspire and challenge yourself in the future. But remember, for this to be beneficial, you need to set quality and tangible goals for both you and your company. Do not settle for simple goals you know you can hit. As a business leader, settings various goals or projections can only be beneficial because there is absolutely no downside to doing so. Yes, it can be disappointing to not hit them, but to see the passion, drive, and push from your workers can be almost everything. In reality, long-term goals and set visions can innovate your products, inspire and drive your workers, and enhance consistency all across the board.

To learn more about creating long-term beneficial goals, take a look at this article here.

Follow Through with your Goals

“If something is important enough, you should try it even if the probable outcome is failure.” ~ Elon Musk

No matter what the goal or the dream is, make sure that you always follow through. For millions of Americans, many people veer away from entrepreneurial field because of the high amount of risk that goes in to owning your own business. If you have an idea or you want to change direction for your business, do it! Just make sure that it is purposeful and beneficial for your company. Yes, there will be some hesitation in the decision. But that is normal. Just accept it and see where it can take you.

Source – http://jgotra.com/the-mind-of-an-entrepreneur/