Everyone will agree that Entrepreneurship is a very interesting journey. Life becomes very interesting and challenging the moment you decide that you want to become an Entrepreneur.
The business goes from various stages that of Startup, Stabilise and Growth. I was wondering if the same qualities of an Entrepreneur are applicable for all the stages? Of course, not, the qualities required in the startup phase are very different from the next phases.
Then I tried to compare this to the process of a Rocket Launch. This Rocket, which launches Satellite has various engines for each phase, and each engine phase has a particular role to play.
Please note that this article is not about Success and Failure. The goal is to talk about the different phases of the life of an Entrepreneur.
Similarities in Rocket Engines and Entrepreneurship
Generally, the term rocket science is used to indicate something which is significantly complex and difficult to understand. We are going to use the analogy of Rocket Engine to understand the life of an Entrepreneur.
Life of an entrepreneur – Phase 1 in Rocket – Boosters; Phase 1 in Business – Startup
In rocket terminology, the Phase One engines are known as boosters. In phase one, the circumstances are challenging. Atmospheric Pressure, Gravity, and Aerodynamic Resistance are high. So the rocket has to burn a lot of fuel in a very short time get passed the Earth’s environment.
The purpose of first phase is to escape the Earth Environment and get into Orbit. Where it can cruise smoothly.
Similarly, in a startup phase, the business has very adverse circumstances. Survival is of prime importance. The Entrepreneur might be in constant fire fighting mode. Rather than creating an organisational structure, getting things done is more important. The entrepreneur might play the role from peon to the President all at once.
Life of an entrepreneur – Phase 2 in Rocket – Orbit; Phase 2 in Business – Stability
Once the rocket escapes the Earth’s Environment, it reaches in the outer orbit. There it rotates around the Earth at a specific speed and on the specific height.
The Rocket does not require huge thrust to stay in the Orbit. Minimal power is required to stay in the Orbit. It just needs to maintain the height and the speed to stay stable.
The same thing happens with the entrepreneur also. Once the business passes the startup phase, it kind of stabilises. The firefighting and do-it-yourself style of management needs to get more organised. Building Team has to begin in this phase. Delegation of work to subordinate starts to come in. Setting up day to day administration becomes prime importance.
The change of management style in the second phase is a must. If that does not happen, Small business stays small. Getting from phase one to phase two is comparatively easier because it comes naturally.
Life of an entrepreneur – Phase 3 in Rocket – Escape Velocity; Phase 3 in Business – Growth
Staying in an orbit is a very tricky situation. If you decrease the speed or height, Earth’s gravity may pull you down. To get into outer space, the speed has to increase beyond a certain point. This speed is called Escape Velocity.
Similarly, an entrepreneur also has to come out of the comfort of stability and think of the big growth. Otherwise, the business stays in the orbit of stability and never makes it big.
Here comes the visionary aspect of Entrepreneurship. Thinking big and administrative excellence is not everybody’s cup of tea.
Conclusion, which type of Entrepreneur are you?
If we study the fortune 500 companies, There are very few companies where the founder of the startup is also leading the large corporation. There are few exceptional stories though like Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, to name a few.
Either the leadership and management style has to change or