Abraham Bates
6 min readOct 30, 2020

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Why Most People Fail to Start Their Own Companies

Remember that daydream you had. You were sitting at your desk in the afternoon. Staring at a ceiling or out a window. You thought to yourself I really need to launch my own company.

Then you went home, made dinner, took out the trash, and passed out while streaming episodes of reruns you’ve probably already seen a few too many times already.

Image by SeventyFourImages via Envato

Why do we do this?

Why do so many people desire to change the world through owning their own company only to have their fire and passion snubbed out by the daily routines that got them daydreaming in the first place?

It’s a weird world if you stop to think about it.

Seriously, just for a minute, think about it. What would you do or could you do if money, time, and energy were no obstacle?

According to Inc Magazine 27 million people in the United States, roughly 14% of the working population consider themselves to be entrepreneurs. These are folks running their projects, businesses, and organizations.

If you are in the 14% you are reading this from the other side. If you are still daydreaming about the project you want to launch then you will most likely tip the scales to 15% entrepreneurial.

Why or Why Not?

Let’s talk about why people start their own business and why they do not.

In fact, let’s talk about you.

Who are you? What do you do? What motivates you and gets you up in the morning?

What pulls at your energy? What challenges you? What sucks your time and energy?

Maybe you have kids, a taxing job, long hours, a short bank account and gas tank, or just a limited imagination for what is possible with your life?

Maybe you have failed enough times to have a deeply rooted fear of trying something new again?

Maybe you have friends and family around you asking (sometimes begging) you not to take the entrepreneurial plunge.

Maybe you are a successful entrepreneur looking for your next adventure.

No matter why, what, or how…many people are held back by their external surroundings. This could be you. Many people find themselves in a situation where they are swimming on the verge of drowning. One more project feels like the wave that would flip the iceberg over and crash the calm of the water.

No matter if you are an entrepreneur or wishing you were, consider what you do and who you are.

First what you do.

What People Do

What you do in life matters.

Let me repeat that again.

What you do in life MATTERS!!

WHAT YOU DO IN LIFE MATTERS!!

This life is short. You get one shot at it, maybe two, depending on your belief system.

Let’s face it most of us fail more than we win.

We are not here to show off our metals; it makes much more sense to show off our scars.

You are not the person who groveled to work today, opened a laptop with trepidation, and can’t wait for a ten-minute break so that you can open that one app you open first every time you unlock your smartphone (bus, lunch, crapper….you know what I’m talking about).

You do things. These things matter.

What you do in your daily, routine-centered life matters. Sooner or later you will realize that one of these things you do is actually quite exceptional.

Maybe that word is putting it too strongly.

You will realize that there is something you do that could be a business you can run, operate, and make a good living all by yourself.

How do I know this?

Because 27 million US folks are doing it currently. You are probably smarter, better positioned, and more strongly equipped than a good chunk of them.

You just need to believe in yourself and get started.

What People Want

You will fail to start your own business if you don’t ask this question of two groups of people.

First, ask yourself.

What do you want? Why do you want it? Does it fit you? Does it make sense? Could you do this thing for a very long time? Could you try something new, pivot, or change lanes?

Most people when answer entrepreneurial questions say, “No way.” Yet, when trials and change come many people adjust to the changing times.

People are generally more resilient than we give them credit for.

You are more resilient than you give yourself credit for.

Second, ask your customer.

Without a customer base, you have nothing to get started on.

Without people to serve you have little to do.

Without a clear-cut mission, you are a wandering leader doing work in random order.

Who are your people? What do they want? Do they want something you can give them? Are you competent enough to bring them into a new place with the vision you have for their life?

Your life needs a community.

Your business needs a cause.

Your company needs a mission.

Wrap these things together and you have a one-track path to figuring out what your customers want. Once you figure out what your customers want, then you have something to do.

Who People Are

This is the core question you must ask yourself.

Who are you?

Are you given things nobody can see? Is your integrity larger than the occasion? Do you notice things differently than the rest of the crowd? Are you on the inside or outside?

Do you have the ability to make a difference?

Do you have what it takes to see a project through?

Do you want to sacrifice your time, money, and energy for being able to live the life you want to live as an entrepreneur?

Many people answer these questions by going back to work. They read these questions, go to sleep, get back in their car in the morning, and head straight to the office.

There’s no shame in that.

Did you know that many people are able to function as entrepreneurs within their own projects at work?

There’s no shame in that.

There is a difference between entrepreneurial activities affecting your personal financial outcome rather than the large cooperation you work for. At the same time, there is life to be found as you go to work at a regular, normal, everyday job.

There’s no shame in that.

While 14% of the workforce considers themselves to be solo or entrepreneurs the other 86% work regular jobs with daily routines and responsibilities.

Are you one or the other?

If you are happy where you are then read this line: enjoy yourself where you are and make the most of it.

If you are unable to be happy unless you launch your own company, then read this line: One day, maybe today, maybe tomorrow, maybe a week from now, you need to sit down, create a plan, and get started.

You cannot be meant for the 14–15% (once you join) entrepreneurial-life-driven-folks and fail to head in that direction.

It doesn’t have to be a big change. Small changes are sometimes the most impactful. Go to Google. Buy a URL domain to start a website. Create an email account. Get a Google Voice business phone number. Do something that pushes you one step closer to your dream.

Why do this?

Because you must decide who you are and act like that person.

If you are an entrepreneur then act like one.

If you are a start-up drive person then start projects.

If you love the chase of launching a new brand then get out a notebook and start sketching out new designs for your business.

Decide who you are and be that person. You will find life on the path to figuring this out for yourself and your customers.

If you do this well, you are already an entrepreneur.

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