Steps To Become Entrepreneur - steps

Steps To Become Entrepreneur

Steps to become entrepreneur

It has been said that today’s environment has become much easier to become an entrepreneur yet many of us are still stuck with the day-time job. Thus, I am writing this article, Steps To Become Entrepreneur hoping it will inspire more people to switch from employee to employer.

Apparently, it is the inflation in housing, food and transportation that deter many of us from making the persistent steps to fulfill our dreams.

I devoted my time to write this article from my experiences hoping to convince more people to become entrepreneurs. I believe the time has come for us to migrate from a salaried job to creating your own income as industrialization is almost reaching its end (the world no longer needs so many workers anymore) and we are already into information age. Though many people have written many books or articles to encourage the readers to become their own bosses but often times I noticed it was not easy to convert as the path had always been tough for many of us.

Without spending too much of your time, I will share my experiences that getting these various steps done is vital prior to getting yourself out of job.

Steps to become entrepreneur 


Step 1: Mindset

It is so important to tune your mindset to mentally prepare yourself with the day that you no longer rely on a day-day job. You need to tell yourself to dream of the day where you will be able to fulfill your dreams, and you will no longer worry about monthly expenses to feed your family. Also, it is important to ask yourself, why become an entrepreneur? You must be convinced that this is the direction moving forward else you may give up easily when things don’t go your way.

This step is so important that I can’t stress enough as it will drive you to fulfill your passion and also people surrounding you will realize that you are very determined and focus in making it happened. If your mental is not strong enough then you may be easily swayed when things don’t go your way.


Step 2: What is your mission?

This is also another important step as I was thought that in order to sustain your business, one needs to know what is the real purpose of setting this particular business. I have spoken to many people where they told me that they set up the business for the purpose of making money. If your purpose is purely for making money then I will say to you that your business may not last long as you have built your business from money-making mentality. When the market turns against you and you find that your business is no longer giving you a decent profitability margin. You may likely either shut it down or sell it to a buyer ASAP. Being an entrepreneur has heavy responsibilities where you need to take care of the business but also be responsible for your employees.

If you set up the company for the purpose of improving the workflow in a particular environment or for the community then you will likely persist despite whatever happens. Take for example, Steve Jobs, he has a strong passion for making this world a better place via his technology from Apple Macintosh to iPad, iPhone. In fact, Steve Jobs asked for US$1 for his annual salary when he returned to Apple. He wanted to fulfill his dream first then monetary gains will follow.

In my case, I set up haircut chain stores for the purpose of helping elderly and needy people where I will get my key staff to provide free elderly haircut on a quarterly basis so that we know that is the mission for our business. Regardless of the market situation, we will do our best to provide this service to our local community as we know these elderly and needy people are waiting for us. We will go through difficult times, but we will not forget what is our mission for setting up this business.


Step 3: Leadership

Becoming an entrepreneur cannot go without a leader.  Often times  many C-level people who held the positions, yet they DO NOT practice what a leader should do. It was not surprising that many companies were undergoing costs cutting for the purpose of improving their overall profitability or EBITA so that they can continue to sit in their comfortable high-paying job. Every board meeting, you will notice that the C-level executives present promising or encouraging numbers, if possible to the shareholders so that both the shareholders will get consistent dividends, and C-level executives will enjoy hefty bonuses. However, the problem lies with the middle management and fellow workers. Year by year, large corporations will have to shrink a number of employees in order to keep the company afloat, but the remuneration packages for the Top management remain to be intact or worst still, C-level executives will demand higher remuneration packages despite the lacklustre market environment. Clearly, there is a problem in this area where the workers will eventually be discouraged, and they no longer have the commitment to think for the company since the C-level executives are only thinking for themselves.

  1. Lead by example

The good qualities of an entrepreneur should possess skills like leading by example and it is sad that quite a number top management are not practicing what they preached. I strongly encourage those who aspire to be an entrepreneur should strive to remind yourself that you need to set an example for others to see so that they will respect you in what you do and say. Not only that, having a strong sense of integrity, ethics will help to gain the respect of the employees. Knowing that they are working for a leader who will not waiver given his/her leadership skills with core values as the backbone.

Take for example, I had a team of colleagues who told me to go back to my home country and don’t work in a foreign place like Hong Kong. They added by saying that Hong Kong was a very competitive place with so many competitors and price competition is extremely fierce thus it will be difficult to sell products and services to potential corporate clients. Within 2 months, I made several cold calls and proposals to respective clients. I managed to close the deals and demonstrated to my colleagues that it can be done, and it is possible. I still remember that day when I display the contracts to my colleagues, there was a moment of silence, and they were fully aware that deep down inside their heart – they are convinced. I led by example via my own actions to close the deals myself in order to convince my colleagues it can be done.

Steps To Become Entrepreneur

2. Problem solver

I want to share this last portion where I believe the days of smaller guys potentially replacing the big corporations are becoming closer and closer. When I was working in a telecommunications company, I noticed that my ex-employer was firing people, especially at the working level like field staff or engineers in the field. It was not a surprise that this particular company no longer had the ability to carry out its own core duties  like laying of cables, knowing exactly what happened to the outages. Instead, they were relying on their contractors to do this part. Staff costs have become too expensive and the top management of these companies will continue to find ways to either reduce or maintain staff costs so expect more retrenchment in the coming years.

Obviously maintenance, R&D, staff costs and other expenses will continue to face downward trend, especially if the top line revenue is not forthcoming. Resulting in a higher occurrence of outages and eventually employees of those companies will realize it loses its focus on main core business rather they merely focus on improving EBITA which is just numbers game.

Having said all these, I want to encourage the readers that there is an opportunity for us as the large companies can no longer sustain in giving good customer service due to continually slashing of Manpower. Those who have the boldness and ability to gather a team will view whether there is a viable business to replace them in doing a better job than some of these large corporations.

An example to be a good problem solver. There was an incident of my clients complaining they were not getting a good deal from being a consumer as compared to a corporate client. Back few years ago when I was working as an employee in a telecom, Consumer and Corporate department are functioning separately. As a result, corporate clients are typically getting slightly better deals when they purchase mobile devices as compared to individuals due to volume discounts, and also we focus on getting other revenue from the corporate clients besides mobile. In order to reach out to the consumers or individuals, I told my team and marketing to craft a deal to incorporate a scheme that can accommodate both corporate and extend to his/her family members. I still remember the day we launched this scheme we received an overwhelming response from around 7,000 new individuals within the 3 month period.


As I have shared some of the qualities that make a good leader or qualities of a successful entrepreneur. One should not underestimate the pressures that you face when the crunch comes but at the end of it all, the fruits of the labour will be sweet as no one will ever take the credit away from you. No longer, you will report to mediocre supervisor and ability to pass your business to next generation if you are able to sustain it.


Step 4: Sufficient cash flow

I still remember when I started my haircut business, I thought I have set aside cash to do renovation, deposit to pay for the renovation, purchase types of equipment. However, I was too optimistic, and I failed to realize that the money I set aside wasn’t enough…..

I assumed that the shop will be able to generate a certain amount of revenue given the footprint from the respective shopping mall which is able to give me a decent revenue. I was too confident and refusal to listen to my coach or anyone. I suffered losses the day my shop opened, and I had to foot out around US$10k per month just to pay for rental and salaries to my employees.

It was a painful 6 months as I continue to suffer losses and my advice to the readers that should you plan to budget the business. You need to set aside at least 6 months of operating expenses besides the other expenses which I mentioned earlier. Clearly, it was an oversight from my end and I almost wanted to pull out from the business as I could no longer suffer any more losses.

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14 thoughts on “Steps To Become Entrepreneur

  1. Cathy

    Hi there Stanley,

    Great step-by-step on how to become an entrepreneur. Having started my journey a little less than 2 years ago, I can’t say enough how important it is to have the right mindset and mission when starting a business.

    They form the basis for your commitment and it is something that you can always fall back on whenever you are faced with challenges that almost make you want to give up.

  2. Alex

    What a terrific post here. I do agree the very first criteria about being an entrepreneur is having the right mindset. I also would like to add “expectation”. Being an entrepreneur, one has to expect a lot of circumstances that will happen beyond his or her control. It is also important to be aware that an entrepreneur has to expect life to be tougher and it requires a lot of commitment, investment of time and effort.

    Thanks for sharing this post!

    1. Stanley Post author

      In terms of responsibility and accountability – YES. In terms of time and effort, it depends on the level of delegation. If you find a good team of people to assist in running your company then you should have some free time.

  3. David

    It is very true that nowadays, more and more people want to be their own boss, but as you outline it, it requires a strong will and leadership, that most people don’t have. Good article that shows that you have a strong experience in creating companies. Thanks to share your knowledge with all of us!

  4. Chris


    Thanks so much for the inspiring comments. The mindset and mission sections felt to me like inspirational pep talk, which I really liked. I am new WA member so I especially need for stay inspired and set goals, which your post helps me to do.


    1. Stanley Post author


      Thanks for the feedback. Yes, it’s nice to hear that you are inspired and hope to see achieve your goals. It is what you DO counts and not what you THINK. Be an action player and don’t be NATO (No Action Talk Only). Step by step and don’t rush, you will gain momentum as you progress each time and you will realize your mindset will slowly change as well. Hope this helps,

  5. TheDopestMatrix

    I love the name of your site, WIN GREATNESS!!
    I think mindset is definitely the most important part of the process, because with out the right mindset you are sure to fail at some point. You are sure to fail any times in life but its definitely worse if you aren’t in the right state of mind, you need to realize now that bad things come and they are there as a test to see if you’ll overcome it to get to the next step!

    Matt TheDopestMatrix

  6. Benedetto

    Wow what a great post, I think you have thought of so many valuable points especially about being an example and leading instead of being the boss! I also loved the mindset of it, because without that you are probably not going to make it. But what really caught my attention was the mission part. It opens my mind and makes me think about my passions and my love for what I do instead of what I want to have and just doing it for the money. But I would need you to elaborate more on the rise of the small companies and the small companies, because I can see Amazon doing well in the next 50 years still, because their customer service is excellent or I don’t see Google going anywhere either. But I think you mean that just people who carrying on the value of costumer service will thrive right?

    1. Stanley Post author


      Hmm, I won’t go into the differences between Amazon versus Google as they are already large corporations. In terms of rise of smaller companies. I am referring to the fact that many people will lose their jobs down the road and those with the respective skill sets will set up their own companies to provide a service to their clients. Large corporations will somehow lose their customers along the way as they no longer, focus on customer service as primary factor – they focus on satisfying shareholders as their main focus. So, I believe the trend is changing where clients would rather work for smaller companies with respective skills and ability to provide better customer service and potentially lower pricing than large corporations. Hope this help.

  7. Zinette

    Hi Stanley, thank you for the postthe post on how to become a strong entrepreneur. I have a few questions as I start out my own journey : 1) clearly, time and effort needs to be devoted into building a successful business, but how rigid or flexible should we be with our time in devoting into a new startup? All in to build and race or moderate spacing to ensure solid foundation? 2) if one doesn’t have the aptitude to be a leader, should they even try to branch out of their comfort zone and be an entrepreneur even though that’s what they really want and believe that it is for the best? Looking forward to your reply 🙂

    1. Stanley Post author


      1. Timing should be flexible as one should engage his/her team to help building the biz especially running for the daily operations. If you spend too much time in the daily operations after running the biz for more than 6 months then likely you fall under the category for being a specialist in your biz. Take for eg. doctors, lawyers are glued to their job day and night.

      One of the purpose of setting up biz is to free ourselves to do what we want while our team will run the daily operations for us.

      2. Pertaining to leadership skill. I am referring to a few key categories.

      a. Ability to get people to work for you. Just imagine why would people work for you not work for MNCs.

      b. Get a team that you able to steer them in the desired direction. Often, it works both ways. I listen to my team should they are able to provide far better solution than mine.

      c. Trust, ethics, integrity and other core values will be key criteria as well. I was cheated previously when I partner the wrong person.

      If you are able to handle above pointers then you should be alright.

      Hope this helps,

      Stanley Tee

  8. Albert

    Thank you for this post. The article is awesome.
    You are providing great content and help a lot of people with these information.

    Mindset is the key. If you do not have that you are screwed. In the beggining it will be hard, maybe you will be the one person who sees potentional in it but you have to keep going.


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