3 Reasons Why Listening to Good Advice Will Help You Succeed
Soak up the wisdom of professionals and successful entrepreneurs who have gone before you
PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images
To the uninitiated, nothing is more exciting than going into business alone and creating something on your own. But any entrepreneur with his skin in the game will tell you that, along with the exciting prospects entrepreneurship brings, the journey isn’t that thrilling without its share of curveballs and challenges.
The reality is, while you may have a great idea, you could fall short in execution for the simple reason that you’re navigating new and uncharted territory. Aldo Carrascoso, a Filipino serial entrepreneur whose business ventures have seen success not only on home shore but as far as Silicon Valley, puts it succinctly, “Entrepreneurs often think that good ideas are great businesses. On the contrary, some of the most mundane ideas have led to some of the greatest companies in the world and some of the greatest ideas in the world have never even seen the light of day. Execution is more important than the idea.”
If execution is indeed what will make or break a business, then your sheer lack of experience means all the odds are already stacked against you. The good news, however, is that there’s nothing keeping you from soaking up the wisdom of entrepreneurs who have tried, failed, and found their way to business success.
That is why any smart entrepreneur knows the value of getting good business and financial advice — from making risky decisions to identifying shady business partners to managing the company’s cash flow, just to name a few.
Here are three reasons why heeding the advice of colleagues, partners, or people and institutions you admire will help your business succeed.
1. Sound advice will help you avoid rookie mistakes
Starting a business is daunting enough, so if you can skip doing things the hard way, why wouldn’t you? Advice from those who have been there, right where you are, and have made numerous mistakes can help you avoid the devastating effects of being clueless.
Remember that you don’t have to go on this exciting journey alone. Even the most successful business owners will admit they did not get to where they are without the guidance and support of those around them.
2. It will bring you closer to people who share the same values
In the competitive world of business, there is no shortage of stories of entrepreneurs feeling betrayed by someone stealing intellectual property and innovative ideas, leaking proprietary information, or drying up the company’s finances.
Listening to sound advice helps entrepreneurs steer clear of questionable dealings and shady characters, and instead choose to remain in the company of people they admire and respect. Since trust is a commodity that’s not easy to come by, it’s best to turn to someone whose integrity is not only unquestionable but who only has your best interests at heart.
You could also seek guidance from a reputable institution. For example, BPI has not only been known to work with small and medium enterprises (SMEs) as a financial partner, but with its extensive years of experience in empowering businesses, it can also provide trusted advice proven invaluable to SMEs starting and growing their business.
“Whether you’re a franchise or a small business, the level of experience and market intelligence BPI brings can help fuel your business’ growth and help you be more attuned to your target audience,” says Junie Veloso, Head of Business Banking at the Bank of the Philippine Islands.
“We provide entrepreneurs a safe — and confidential — space to learn, experiment, and ask questions,” Veloso adds.
3. It can help you find the courage to get things done
Sometimes, even when you’ve employed every possible measure to shield yourself from failure, external factors beyond your control will send your business to the trenches.
Paul Rivera, the CEO of job recruitment platform Kalibrr, is no stranger to this. Before his company finally found its footing, Rivera had to make a very painful business decision after losing their biggest client: firing half the members of his pioneer team. When Rivera found himself dithering — “I knew it had to be done, but I didn’t know what to do or how to do it,” he recalls — it helped that he had co-founders to give him unfiltered advice and the push he needed to get things done.
While having a support system doesn’t really mean that you now have a life vest to save you from the deep end — you have to do the swimming yourself — they can help you navigate. “I was ultimately able to make that decision, and do it in a timely manner, because I had people giving me real talk and honest advice. As a business owner, you want to make sure you get that,” says River.
In your journey as an entrepreneur, you will encounter many who are willing to give advice (unsolicited or not). What is important is your ability to evaluate the situation and act on the counsel they provide because, ultimately, as a business owner your actions will determine if the company will sink or swim.