Developing Yourself As An Entrepreneur

There are some qualities that will make a person out-shine others. The first one is “Integrity” meaning your actions should carry a good faith and good deed. The second one is Empathy, understanding the problems of others, and putting yourself in others’ shoes in order to have a view of their perspective. Third and the most important is communication meaning you should be very clear in conveying your thoughts and putting ideas on the table. 

This article belongs to the third episode of “Beyond Profit” a weekly show on entrepreneurship. The subject of this episode was how to develop as an entrepreneur and the special Guest for this episode was Mr. Kamran Rizvi who is working in Pakistan since 1991. His major expertise is in training and human capital development. 

The interview started with the question of what essential qualities are required to be an effective entrepreneur? 

In response, he started with the fact that every person has the required qualities to be an entrepreneur. However, there are some qualities that will make a person outshine others. The first one is “Integrity” meaning your actions should carry good faith and good deed. The second one is Empathy, understanding the problems of others, and putting yourself in others’ shoes in order to have a view of their perspective. Third and the most important is communication meaning you should be very clear in conveying your thoughts and putting ideas on the table. 

These three qualities will make you develop something that is beneficial and unique. Another question came from Mr. Usman (founder of Startup insider Magazine) on the personal development of the young entrepreneurs because they work hard on their business plans, investor management, however, they take their selves granted the whole process. So, how can they develop themselves along with their businesses? Mr. Rizvi replied with advice backed by 30 years of experience, “Behaviors produce results”. Yes, this is it. Behaviors come from emotions and emotions stem from the thoughts and thoughts are shaped by the value systems and beliefs. So, it is very important to work on your health and your inner belief system because self-actualization is not an easy process. It needs an alignment of your value system with your behaviors to produce the best outcomes. To further extend his answer on the activities, he mentioned living one day at a time. 

This will have two aspects, one is self-discipline and Freedom. There should be a timetable for your day. If you want to waste your time even it should have a time slot for that. So, that you know where is your day going. So, there are two most important times in a day, one when you go to sleep and when you get up because it is important to know what you achieve in a day when you go to sleep and to know what you want to achieve in a day when you get up. So, set your daily goals, small short-term targets to achieve bigger results. 

Another question on the Importance of communication skills in the business from the Host, to which he replied very succinctly, “Quality of life – quality of communication”. He further elaborated that people take communication without much importance with the premise that we have been speaking and listening since childhood. However, it is essential to note that there are many types of communication ranging from intrapersonal to interpersonal communication. The relation between the two types is simple yet very significant if one is not clear about the thoughts and ideas with oneself the inter-personal segment will remain unclear and ineffective. Effective intrapersonal communication is ‘thinking’ it is what helps us grow.

Step one is to create clarity with yourself, in your thoughts and plans only then when you communicate with others will your dialogue make sense. In the ambit of communication talking is essential but listening to others quietly and attentively is just as important. Further, the utterance of words is just a small part of communication our gestures, facial expression, and body language all combine and make the phenomenon of human interaction. 90% of the message is delivered unsaid! Another aspect of public speaking is that if a question is asked about which you do not know. Please do not be silly and give flippant answers! Be graceful in accepting that you do not know and will try to get back with the confirmation at a later time and preserve your credibility. 

The host asked a question very dear to the hearts of all entrepreneurs that is there a shortcut to getting a crisp and successful sales pitch through! Kamran replied with a smile that there is, unfortunately, no shortcut to a crisp performance. Practice is the key! Investors wish to see the details of the idea and be convinced that their money will bring back profits. To ensure they believe that and cooperate the entrepreneur has to be convinced that this will be a successful venture and then convince the investor. The pitch has to be researched, honest, and convinced of success along with the probability of success to ensure credibility. AIDA is a short formula that can be used to great success you get the investor’s Attention, you hold his Interest, arouse a Desire, and finally obtain Action practice AIDA and it can be a great sales pitch tool in terms of communication. 

The nest question asked from the great Guru of self-discovery for the secret formula to investing in oneself. First thing is that one must trust yourself and invest in yourself to reap the benefits of a chunk of money put into the business. Traveling, reading, and exploring education all these three things along with conscious human interaction all combine with the intent to learn from different angles is very important and can be hugely effective. 

The next question sought was if Kamran Rizvi thought that financial literacy was significantly important for a startup founder. To this question, he emphatically responded that any work that one undertakes essentially requires us to know the profit ad loss of it. Knowledge of the mechanics is essential to keep score of the measurable value that is being added by oneself in a venture of the other stakeholders involved. 

On the topic of mentors, Mr. Rizvi remarked that at this age many are available on the internet but it is advisable that the mentor you choose should be someone who has had a successful and long journey in the same direction as the one seeking the mentor. Be confident in learning from these gurus. However, always remember that the heights of success that the mentor achieved were in times different than yours. Mentors are the ones who have more experience but one should keep in touch with the young ones who are part of this new world where we operate and are more in touch with this world’s new realities. So, context and field both need mentors but of different kinds. 

The last question is on the health of an entrepreneur. He was of the view that when you talk about the health of a person then there will be physical health, emotional health, mental and spiritual health play their parts accordingly. Today, mental health is getting a lot of hype because people are suffering from stress immensely and as a result, mental disorders are getting common. These will lead to poor decision makings to which many suffer. Nutrition and a balanced diet are very important KPIs along with good sleep. Health is wealth. Allah has given you a healthy mind and body so, please take care of it.