Business Lessons Learned From Corporate America
With all the hype around job quitting to become a full-time entrepreneur, consider all the important characteristics of a business owner that can be groomed in Corporate America.
The reason why companies hire people is because they are an answer to a problem. Become a solution and you can almost always guarantee the outcome. Create a business that is a solution to a problem, and you’re halfway there. Before starting my hair care company, I saw that black women needed to know that they have full permission to show up in their workplace, naturally. I wrote a book, Thank God I’m Natural, that depicted growing up with natural hair as a black woman, how we show up in the professional world, and included tons of tips on caring for our curly tresses.
Producing an actual product has its own set of obstacles. First, how and where do I find someone to help make the products I want to sell? This was only the beginning. There are so many components that make up a business. You’ve got manufacturing, marketing, logistics, and the list goes on. Most first-time business owners don’t initially know how to answer these question, but guess what? You figure it out.
This leads me to the next point. How do you find the answer to problems? Other than research, relationships. Relationships are the key drivers in business. It’s important to make sure you nurture and make genuine relationships starting now. Not because you “need” something per say, but because as humans – relationships are how we thrive and survive.
Making relationships is all about being genuine, transparent, and having a pure heart for getting to know people. How you treat people goes a lot farther than one would imagine.
Embrace Your Mistakes
I tell my team all of the time – 98% of problems are not irreversible. Meaning you can make a mistake, but it’s not something that can’t be fixed. One thing is for certain, there will be mistakes and many of them. But the good news is, you’ll make it through them. Here’s the formula for addressing mistakes –
Pause and reflect – rather than being reactive.
Not taking a moment to assess how and why mistakes are made can cause you to make the same mistake twice. Take a moment to do a basic cost analysis. These analyses are easy to bypass, but it makes all of the difference.
Most importantly, give yourself grace. Like the new person at a job, you’re an amateur. It takes time. Don’t expect to have it all figured out, even your most successful entrepreneurs are still figuring it out. We’re all figuring it out together.
What lessons have you learned from Corporate America?