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26岁坐拥千万美元咨询公司,他如何做到

Jonathan Long 2017年02月27日

在大学时,山姆·欧文斯就与很多创业者不同,他知道自己不愿毕业后按部就班进入职场,他想要的远不止于此。于是,在经历几次创业失败后,他凭着自己的努力,终于如愿以偿地获得了应有的成功。

和许多创业者不同,山姆·欧文斯很早就知道朝九晚五并非自己应有的人生轨迹。他想要的不光是这些。因此,大学毕业后的第一份工作只持续了三个月,他就辞了职,然后在父母的车库里建立了自己的第一家公司。

经过九个月的努力工作并投入了自己的全部资金后,欧文斯的第一家公司——一个求职者信息发布网站正式投入运营。但它很快就一败涂地,欧文斯随后创建的两家公司也是如此。

每次失败后欧文斯都不会放弃,也不会回到常规的办公室生活中,相反,他把这些经历变成了学习的机会。自己的绝佳创意为什么没有得到消费者响应呢?自己做错了什么呢?又有哪些做对了呢?

自我教育再加上学习和成长的意愿推动欧文斯再次尝试创业——他办起了自己的第四家公司:一家商业咨询机构。

这次他的付出获得了回报。26岁,也就是建立这家商业咨询公司短短四年后,欧文斯的身家就已超过1,000万美元。不用说,他也已经从父母的车库里搬了出来。

最近我和欧文斯谈了谈,想听听他会给其他创业者提出什么样的建议。以下是他提出的四大要点,也是他在为创业而进行尝试和努力的过程中学到的最有价值的东西。

1. 快速树立个人品牌。

树立个人品牌对创业者来说有几大好处。首先,获得认可的个人品牌会有助于你的新公司提高可信度。

欧文斯说:“如果人们了解并且信任你的个人品牌,他们就更有可能相信你的新公司。”

其次,你自己的受众范围越广,你随时都能接触到的潜在客户就越多。

欧文斯建议通过做宣传来树立个人品牌——既是为了个人,也是为了公司。途径是争取演讲机会,然后尽可能迅速地让社交媒体积极跟进。

欧文斯说:“每一次在媒体上露面,每个演讲机会或者每次在社交媒体上发帖都有可能给你带来新客户。个人品牌是企业成功的基本工具。”

2. 将交际圈变现。

欧文斯认为,对大多数正在或者打算创业的人来说,个人交际圈的价值都要超过他们创建第一家公司时意识到的水平。

他说:“第一次创业时别忘了朋友圈和亲人。已经存在于个人交际圈的潜在客户数量也许会让你感到意外。”

朋友、家人和朋友的朋友都有需求,而且和接触素不相识的人相比,去找那些对你的新公司有所耳闻的人几乎总会更容易。

3. 永远不要停止学习。

无论如何,创建新公司时都会有一个学习的过程。

不管你认为对自己选择的行业有多了解,或者对成功创业的要素有多清楚,你总会遇到新的挑战,总会碰上此前从未见过的行业变化或者其他障碍。

欧文斯说:“得益于如今的大量可用信息,任何创业者在任何问题上都能自行钻研。我读了几百本书,自学了营销、销售、会计和策略,甚至是自我开发的方法。我知道,如果想让自己的公司顺利运转,我就得把所有东西都弄清楚。”

4. 把拒绝抛在脑后

欧文斯说:“刚开始,面对拒绝对我来说非常可怕。”

欧文斯天生内向,给别人打电话以及接触潜在客户和他的舒适区相距甚远。但他看到了让自己走到这一步有多重要,也因此学会了如何面对拒绝。

他说:“强迫自己和陌生人谈自己的公司,然后明白商业上的拒绝和个人无关——这可能是我在最终迈向成功的道路上最关键的一步。”(财富中文网)

译者:Charlie

This article originally appeared on Entrepreneur.

Unlike many entrepreneurs, Sam Ovens figured out very early on that the nine-to-five wasn’t his destined path in life. He wanted more, so after just three months working his first post-college job, he quit and moved into his parent’s garage to start his first business.

After nine months of hard work and spending all the money he had, Ovens' first business—a reverse job board—went live. It quickly failed miserably, as did the next two businesses he started.

Rather than giving up and going back to the mundanity of office life after each failure, Ovens used the experiences as learning opportunities. Why didn't his great ideas fail to resonate with consumers? What did he do wrong? What did he do right?

This self-evaluation and his willingness to learn and grow, led Sam to try his hand once more at entrepreneurship, starting his fourth company—a business consulting firm.

This time his efforts paid off. By age 26—just four short years after opening his consulting business—Ovens had made more than $10 million. Needless to say, he has also moved out of his parent’s garage.

I spoke to Sam recently to hear what advice he had to share with other entrepreneurs. What follows are his top four tips -the most valuable lessons he learned through his own process of entrepreneurial trial and error.

1. Build your personal brand fast.

Building a personal brand has several key benefits for entrepreneurs. First, having a recognized personal brand can help give your new business credibility.

“If people know and trust you and your personal brand, they’re more likely to trust your new business.” Ovens, said.

Second, the wider your personal audience, the more prospective clients you can reach on any given day.

Ovens suggests building your brand by seeking out publicity—both for yourself and for your company -- by booking speaking engagements and by developing a robust social media following as quickly as you can.

“Each media hit, speaking opportunity or social media post has the potential to bring you a new customer. Personal branding is an essential tool for business success.” Ovens, said.

2. Monetize your networks.

According to Ovens, most entrepreneurs and wannabe entrepreneurs already have a more valuable network of contacts than they realize when they get started with their first business.

“When you’re first starting out, don’t forget about your personal network of friends and family.” Ovens, said. “You might be surprised how many potential clients already exist within your immediate sphere.”

Friends, family and friends-of-friends are all people with needs, and it will almost always be easier to approach someone you already know about your new business than it will be to approach a total stranger.

3. Never stop learning.

No matter what, when you start a new business, there will be a learning curve.

Regardless of how well you think you might know your chosen industry, or what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur, you’re always going to encounter new challenges, industry changes or other obstacles that haven’t crossed your path before.

“Thanks to the huge availability of information these days, any entrepreneur can teach him or herself just about anything,” Ovens, said. “I read hundreds of books and taught myself all about marketing, sales, accounting, strategy—even personal development methods. I knew that I needed to understand all of this if I wanted my business to work.”

4. Get over rejection.

“Facing rejection was a huge fear for me when I started out,” Ovens, said.

As a natural introvert, calling people and reaching out to prospective clients was way outside of Ovens' comfort zone. But, he saw how important it was to put himself out there; and so, he learned how to face rejection.

“Forcing myself to talk to strangers about my business—and then, understanding that business rejection isn’t personal—was probably the most critical step in my journey to ultimate success,” he said.

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