Dominik Loncar, Futurpreneur Canada Entrepreneur-in-Residence, dloncar@cybf.ca

Is this the year you launch your business? It’s easy to feel overwhelmed with all the people who will give you advice, and all the information that is available on the internet. Here are ten tips to sort out the myths, half- truths and realities before making the leap. Entrepreneurship can be a wonderful journey.  Just do it with your eyes wide open and your ears fully attuned.

1.  All you need is a great idea.  An idea is not a business.  Ideas are starting points, not ending points.  You will reiterate and fine tune your original idea many times over.

2.  Men and women start businesses differently.  There is some truth to this but they’re more alike when they succeed:  sharp, resilient and customer driven.

3.  Entrepreneurship is your ticket to instant success.  Most entrepreneurs achieve success through hard work over a period of time.

4.  You’ll be motivated because it’s your business.  This does not mean doing what you felt like doing.  You’ll need to make sacrifices, reduce your personal expenses, watch your pennies, do the cash flow, get out, sell and take out the garbage.

5.  You have to be in the right place at the right time. Timing does play a part in business success but there is always room for a business that gives fantastic customer service and value even if it’s been done before.

6.  You need a ton of money to make it big. Act your stage before you ask for that hefty investment from the Dragon’s Den.  Make sure you know how to make the few dollars you do have, work.  The word “resourceful” was invented by an entrepreneur.

7.  Your brilliant social media plan will make you rich. There is no magic pill to success. Things go viral online when you least expect them to (see #3).

8.  You can do it alone.  You quickly realize how truly interdependent we really are.  Ask for help and stay humble.

9.  Being an entrepreneur is the end goal.  Entrepreneurship is a means to a larger goal:  To lead a more fulfilling life. So, if it doesn’t work out, it doesn’t have to define you.

10.  Entrepreneurs are _____________________ (fill in the blank).  Entrepreneurs come in all shapes and sizes and modes of thinking. There is no cookie cutter entrepreneur.