Less than 200 pages of lucid text will empower you with the attitude needed to build a growth fantasy!
Entrepreneurship is a mental attitude - a mindset. It is the sense of responsibility that comes from the ownership of an enterprise. We are talking about intellectual and emotional ownership, not mere legal ownership.
An entrepreneur mindset is about owning our dreams, our flights of fancy. We need to picture our castles-in-the-air completely, smell our khayali pulao, and then discover the means of making it come true. A big fantasy with a feasible action plan is vision.
The vision gives us the courage to own the risk and the generosity to share the rewards of our enterprise. When this vision engages the individual members of our team, a conviction runs through our enterprise. It is conviction and integrity that builds the dream team.
1. Introduction: Entrepreneurs and their Enterprise
2. Fear-Fun-Fantasy: The Entrepreneur Equilibrium
3. Build a Growth Fantasy
4. Lay the Foundation of the Fantasy5. Live the Fantasy: 10 Strategies for Entrepreneur Excellence
6. Always Higher
ENTREPRENEUR MINDSET STRATEGY NO. 1
JACK BE NIMBLE, JACK BE QUICK!
Build the mindset of nimble thinking and quick action
From day one, an entrepreneur is sailing against the wind. All alone. There are sharks in the water, and it is a new boat that has not been tested for leaks! Two hundred things to do every day, but there are only 24 hours in a day and we have only two hands, two eyes, two ears, one mouth and one overburdened brain. No wonder that world- wide, 85% of small and medium enterprises close shop in the first five years of their existence.
So what do we do? In the beginning, we need to build the mind- set of nimble thinking and quick action. Our minds have to be nimble enough to stay connected to everything that is important to our enterprise and quick enough to not get bogged down with any one thing that we are doing. The moment our focus is engaged with one urgent and important thing, we lose the connection with all the other important things.
There are seven rules across four functional areas that will help build the faculty for nimble thinking and the ability to take quick action in us. The four functional areas are:
The seven rules are:
|revenue||1||Read the DSR – the daily sales pulse|
|resource||2||Build teams around key personnel|
|3||Empower the team to support the roof|
|4||Fill the war chest before riding to battle|
|5||Submit to financial discipline|
|Competition||6||Downplay your strengths; play up your weakness|
|Entrepreneur focus||7||Build your inner circle|
Let us deal with each of these areas individually to understand the rule or rules related to each area.
|RULE 1: Read the DSR - the daily sales pulse|
Revenue is the breath of an organization. If there is no revenue there is nothing. Throughout the life of an enterprise, successful entrepreneurs keep track of inflows on a daily basis. What is their tool? The daily sales report.
We need to understand that our sales personnel are like our front- line soldiers, expanding our interests in what is essentially hostile environment. They are, so to say, swimming with the sharks. It is crucial that their everyday successes and failures, are known by the entrepreneur. The DSR is like Sanjaya informing the blind Dhritrashtra about developments in the battle at Kurukshetra. We are not everywhere in the field, we are not everywhere in the frontline. We need to admit that we are blind, especially if we do not have our finger on the DSR pulse.
Each sales person needs to file a daily sales report (DSR), which strives to capture in as concise manner as possible the salesperson's activities during the day - the response generated from customers, the orders they have booked from the channel, the collections they have deposited with the accounts department.
Powered by the last mile sales rep who is filing this everyday, the DSR helps us track the daily revenue, the daily sales that will become accounts receivables to feed medium term revenue and daily trends in demand, which will help us forecast long term sales and long term revenue. In a growing organization, the secular trend is that collection will always lag behind sales, which will always lag behind demand. However, the trends should all be growing at an equal pace - three parallel lines rising acutely. Alerts should sound the moment any one of the lines falters.
The DSR pulse should be tracked product by product, head count by head count, division by division and cluster by cluster. This will help us stay on top of crucial developments in our business across brand, human resource, department and territory. The DSR pulse needs to be supplemented by the entrepreneur by an actual ear to the ground. This can be accomplished by maintaining a personal inter- action with key accounts. Check any medical diagnostic test, the report always has a caveat - to be correlated with clinical examination. As an entrepreneur, our personal contact with key accounts is like the clinical examination that a doctor does.
To be able to read and understand the DSR pulse and especially to work out the dynamics of revenue flows, we need to have some understanding of the ecosystem within which our enterprise works. A good tool for this is what I call the Three-C Framework. This is a tool that enables us to examine and understand the different drivers and the time scales that affect the three basic actors in the ecosystem in which our enterprise operates. These are the customer, the channel and the company. Our business venture is totally dependent on people who have different drivers and objectives than we have. It is only when we recognize that, can we correctly interpret the signals we receive from the market. Our revenue inflow is dependent on our customers and the channel that serves them. Our business objective, as an entrepreneur, is long term and what drives us is an increase in the market share. Our channel partners' objective is medium term and their driver is RoI (return on investment). Our customer's objective is immediate and their driver is value. It is only when we can generate demand from the customer that we can generate sale from the channel. It is from channel sale that we generate revenue. (See Figure 5.1.1)
To understand this better, let us pick a line of business that is extremely seasonal - umbrellas, raincoats and rain-shoes. Customer demand for it is during the rainy season and if their demand is not met at the first shop they enter, they will go to the next. The customer will not wait. Even for consumer durables, the customer may take his or her own time to reach a decision about the brand and model of choice, but once that is fixed, it is not likely they will wait for the satisfaction of their demand. Our primary interest is in building and determining demand early enough so we can plan production accordingly.
The channel partners' objective is based on the medium term. They stock their outlets to fulfil demand that they anticipate in the period between each delivery cycle. Channel partners do not have any loyalty to the product or brand; their driver is just the return on their investment. They are interested in the absolute margin that they make from what they purchase from us and what they sell on down- stream. Yes, absolute margin, because low volumes may not cover overhead costs. For our rainy weather products, they will only stock in the season. As the delivery cycle becomes meaningless due to the extreme seasonality of demand, credit and sale on consignment basis becomes a difficult proposition here. We do not want to be stuck with the product during the off-season. The primary interest of the channel is on discount; our primary interest will be clearing stock and securing payment.
building an entrepreneur mindset
Gaurav Marya, President, Franchise India
Size: 5 1/3” x 8¼ “
Binding: Paperback with gatefold cover
Thanks a lot for your book, Take Charge! I am bad with emails and I rarely write one. But after getting your book and reading it in the last couple of hours, I really felt like writing you a note. In India very few people write books and rarer are the breed who write intelligent good books. And rarest at a young age!
You look fresh and so does your book -- in design and in content. This is the kind of positivity with which I so hope young people approach life. Everything is then possible and everyone can then take charge. I have read the book already and I think it's a lovely piece of work, specially in terms of innovatively putting across your ideas!
Congratulations also to your brother, wife and team... I wish you the very best for all your endeavors, and do ask someone to contact [us] and take a small order of 36 copies of your book for our 18 libraries across India!
management educator, best-selling author and serial entrepreneur
Gaurav Marya, through his book, "Take Charge", has charged up the minds of Entrepreneurs and given them a road map to success. The focus on the mental attitude and a positive mindset is an important ingredient that Gaurav has highlighted for existing and future entrepreneurs. Go ahead, Take Charge!!!
brand guru, best-selling author and serial entrepreneur
The book beautifully captures Gaurav's journey of franchising into valuable doses of knowledge for aspiring entrepreneurs.
master chef, best-selling author, entrepreneur