When you’re starting out on a new business venture, how long do you think it will take for your business to succeed? It’s worth considering.
Success is neither guaranteed nor is it even likely.
A large number of new businesses don’t make it despite the best efforts of their owners, and at all levels of operation. Could this lack of success be due, in part at least, to the failure to ask this simple question:
“How long will it take for my business to succeed?”
What Does Success Mean?
Success can mean many things to different people. In the context of this discussion, let’s define success as the achievement of a level where the business can sustain itself – in other words, when the business becomes profitable.
This definition is deliberately simple, but relevant because no matter what success means to you, if your business consumes resources that are more valuable than the ones it produces, and continues to do so, eventually, the business will consume everything – like a black hole.
Success can be many things but the achievement of profitability is a relevant goal, especially if you don’t want to be sucked into a black hole.
How Long Will It Take For My Business To Succeed?
The question “How Long Will It Take For My Business To Succeed” is an important one to ask because it helps to understand the resources your business may consume before it becomes self-sufficient.
The time to success for any business varies. It depends on the business, the product, the overheads, the industry, the competition. Sometimes success stories are rapid and seemingly overnight, whilst others take years, or decades, to get the traction to succeed. Audacity, innovation, and fortune play complex roles.
Asking this question helps to clarify our expectations for our endeavours, and the extent to which we are relying on outcomes which are difficult to predict. Useful questions include:
- When do you expect your business to succeed by?
- When are you relying on your business succeeding by?
Before dwelling too long on these matters, let’s take a step back. Generally, for your business to succeed it will need to grow. We can learn a lot about the process of growth by looking at gardening. A great garden is not achieved overnight.
Gardening and Your Business
Even if you don’t have a green thumb, it’s worth looking at the similarities between growing a garden and growing a business. It can help answer the question “How Long Will It Take For My Business To Succeed?” Here is a short list of gardening considerations. Can you see how these relate to business?
- Needs to be nurtured
- Can grow in soil that is fertile
- Requires attention
- Growth takes time
- Will be attacked (weather, insects, plant species)
- Gets stronger as it grows
- Becomes more tolerant of adversity over time
- Can develop momentum
- If untended, spirals off into ruin
- Can succeed
- Success is linked to the gardener’s efforts
There are exceptions to every rule, and if you’re looking for the easiest, quickest path to success you are not alone. The success stories in business that many hold so dear are often viewed in the result stage – after momentum has been created. They’re seen in light of the achievements that have been won.
It’s important to dream big, but just as important to remember that every successful business goes through a gardening stage too. Where they nurture and tend to their business, responding to its needs, as it slowly grows in size and momentum, until it has a life of its own.
How long do you think it will take your business to succeed?