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EXECUTION: The missing ingredient for a successful business
Most entrepreneurs wouldn't read this but those who do are bound to succeed this 2022.
How was your 2021? If your answer is "epic", we agree.
Here's a thought for this year's wrap up post –
Execution is the missing ingredient for a successful business or startup.
As the founder of ContentDash, I found myself coming out of 2021 with lessons learned. I need to share these with you as a fellow business owner.
Let me tell you a story –
When Ian, my cofounder and CTO, and I started back up, we were on a mission. 2021 started with ContentDash builds in March after hiatus from the pandemic. It was with a fervent belief that our content planner product has the potential to make it global.
We went through customer interviews, iterations, updates, validations, and revisits of our roadmap.
Every single time we had an idea, we built and validated it along the way.
It was never easy at all.
But all that hard work paid off. We got users and customers – paying for either ContentDash or DashoContent. The paying customers, at the end of the day, is the validation a startup needs to prove product-market fit.
Despite what recently happened to us and the distraction that Typhoon Odette brought to our lives and our startup, we’re still pushing for execution.
The thing is, we could have settled with merely BELIEVING in our idea and its potential. But that's not how epic entrepreneurship works.
Epicness is when ideas meet execution.
Which stage below are you in?
Stage 1: You start with a core belief and an idea.
Freedom is what we believe in as entrepreneurs.
From birth, most of us dream of being business owners. They tell us that the only way to be successful is through control of our own time and resources. And for us, it means having your own business.
We either get believers who will fund us as entrepreneurs or work hard as OFWs or similar. The goal would be to save up for a fund and finally go back to our hometown to create the business of our dreams.
This belief leads us to come up with ideas to make it real.
You draft up ideas for a business after envisioning ourselves as a business owner. You pick ideas for a business starting with what's trending nowadays -- a cloud kitchen? A pizza store? A cafe?
It's the same way with creating content for marketing, content ideas are where you can start – a newsletter, a promotion, a campaign?
Stage 2: You draw up a strategy and start planning.
**This part is crucial and the actual first step in executing your entrepreneurship dreams.**
Ideas are a dime a dozen. We've heard of this before.
Coming up with ideas would be easy since they only stay in your head.
But what's important is putting your strategy in writing (which works for me).
Let's say your strategy is to work for 5 years abroad. By year 2, you can start saving up for your new business startup fund. You might have done this by actually writing down your goals year by year.
I often do this by leveraging on the optimism of every new year that comes and doing a planning session. It's your classic pen and paper jotting down thoughts -- highlights of the year, lessons learned from each, and what can be better.
Strategizing can be long-term but putting it in a plan is a short-term, time-bound, measurable approach.
Once you draw up a plan, it forces you to put timelines to your strategy and draft up an actual game plan. This has been constant advocacy for us at ContentDash as a product – to draft up a content plan before creating content and make it a discipline.
The plan and a calendar will be your next steps towards giving birth to your ideas.
Not having one will put your ideas in jail. Set them free.
Stage 3: Solidify with artifact (or content!)
After having a solid game plan and timeline, solidify this with artifacts. Move forward by securing a lease, buying equipment, creating your MVP for a tech platform, or producing the content for your website or social media.
At ContentDash, this is the reason why we built DashoContent, our content mediation platform. We want to help ecommerce entrepreneurs solidify their plans with content creation by matching them with actual content creators.
Once artifacts or content is in place - TEST, TEST, TEST. You need to validate these and test out your plans against what works and what doesn't.
In summary, it is not about just believing and strategizing. The way that we bring out the fruits of our labor is also through planning and execution.
Now that most businesses are bouncing back from the pandemic. Or from the literal and figurative storms of our lives, we need to be on our feet and start acting on our dreams.
Execution is everything.
And your execution will define if you had a successful 2021 and a better 2022 ahead. We hope to be with you in this journey as well as we build ContentDash and our products.