Should Ask Questions (SAQ) for Entrepreneurs
If you’re an entrepreneur you most likely have an unwavering passion for innovation. You see the world in a positive way and think about the massive opportunity for improvement. These are vital qualities to being successful. However, if you want this year (and following years) as an entrepreneur to be spectacular, you need to develop the skill of asking great questions. If you want to shorten the learning curve, and grow quickly, keep reading. Below is a list of the important questions every entrepreneur must ask themselves, if they want to be successful in their ventures.
What Does Success Look Like?
You need clarity of vision for success. The reason for this is simple. Once you know exactly what you want (and we mean you must deeply know how the final vision plays out) then you can begin making decisions which move you towards your vision. You will start to see the world in simple terms like: “Does this action help me move towards my vision?” If yes, then take action. If no, then take no action. Write the grand vision you have and make a plan for achieving it, even if the plan is rudimentary, you’ll find the process of planning to be helpful!
What are my limiting beliefs?
“Being an entrepreneur is like eating glass and staring into the abyss,” according to Elon Musk. We think this represents the struggle of what an entrepreneur will face over his/her lifetime. Many successful people often say the gift of entrepreneurship is in the journey, not the outcome, because you get to see a side of yourself you never thought possible. Often, entrepreneurship is a spiritual journey, because leaders will gain insights into their own strengths, weaknesses, unique opportunities, and vulnerabilities. Your job is to find out what your limiting beliefs are, the hidden operating code you have, and eliminate them from your decision making process.
Does my product or service solve a problem or address a real need?
Peter Drucker, the father of modern consulting, once said: “The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well the product or service fits him and sells itself.” What does this mean for you? If your product or service truly solves a deep seated need for the consumer, you’re almost guaranteed success because you’re providing real and tangible value to the world. Often, entrepreneurs fall in love with their idea, instead of doing the hard work of finding a real addressable problem. Don’t fall into this trap.
Who are you going to put out of business and why?
This sounds harsh, but business is a competitive landscape full of obstacles. Unless you’re creating a truly innovative company, meaning you’re first to market (not always a great thing by the way…) you’re going to have competition, and this means you will go toe-to-toe with a competitor for marketshare. It’s best to ask this question early, because at least you won’t be caught blindsided by someone trying to take you under, and you can be on the offensive. Plus, you’ll find out quickly if you have the stomach for business.
What do you stand for? What are you against?
If you want loyal employees and want to be a great leader, you must have a higher “why” outside of making money or gaining market share. Take a lesson from history; Napoleon, the brilliant French general from 1801-1815, was fighting not for personal glory, but for the freedom of the French people from an oppressive government. His men and women stood by his side through chaos because he stood for a principle universal to them all. What does your business stand for which inspires employees to keep pushing when they want to quit? More importantly, what does your business promise to fight? Answers to these questions will reveal an internal motivation you probably never knew existed!
Am I tracking my progress correctly?
We saved this question for last because we think it’s the most important. Tracking your progress is the single greatest action you can take in terms of return on investment. The cost is nearly $0 and the reward is almost exponential. You will gain insights into your hidden patterns you didn’t know you had. For instance, every business needs to track where their money is being spent and the consequences of the spending. The same can be said for every relationship and interaction you have too.
Are you Happy with your Answers to these Questions?
If you’re happy with your answers to the above questions – that’s great news! In our experience, exceptional entrepreneurs are always questioning the status quo. At the Tandon Group we’ve partnered with and invested in dozens of companies over the last two decades, having met with massive success along the way. If you believe your startup is poised to be the next household name, reach out to us. We’d love to be your partner for the road ahead.