As business start up consultant I get many requests from people who have an idea, a hunch or a deep seated itch about a business they think they’d like to start up. This might be anything from a café, a horse farm or a jewellery shop. One thing many of these fledgling entrepreneurs have in common is that what they claim they want to do, is not necessarily what they actually need to do.
Many times, the metaphorical dance between me as consultant, and them as entrepreneur, involves us unravelling exactly what it is their business idea is really really about. The café shop owner may not actually be about running a café at all – but is more about trying to find a way to spend more time with her husband and kids at home. The horse farm owner may not be really interested in horses at all, given their probably destination of a cheap supermarket burger but is more fascinated by the way in which mushrooms grow out of the manure the horses leave behind; the proto-jeweller may be more concerned about how they are going to woo the girl next door, rather than spending his time pricing trinkets and baubles until the early hours of the morning.
Lots of forces inform that dance from which the real business impetus emerges: habit, longing, memory, expectation, commitment and motivation and the desire to please are just a few. But one thing remains clear: if you want to start a business, you have to not just want it, you gotta, in the words of the Spice Girls, really really really want it – and everything that is wrapped up in it.