Dear UpGrader 👋🏻,
Welcome to this week's edition of UpGrade! Today, we're diving into an essential aspect of entrepreneurship: adaptability and resilience. In a world where change is constant and challenges are inevitable, cultivating these qualities can make all the difference in the success of your startup.
As an entrepreneur, I've faced my fair share of obstacles and setbacks, from launching my first startup at 19 to navigating the complexities of international business. Over the years, I've realised adaptability and resilience are the secret ingredients that have helped me persevere and thrive.
A personal story
MyGigsters was born in 2020, a year when the world had an uninvited guest 'COVID'. In April 2020, I, along with my wife and one-year-old daughter, was sitting in anxiety and fear with no backup plans as my temporary visa was ending in a few days. I had no other option and was looking to exit Australia safely, but all outbound International flights were cancelled.
At this point, I was hustling and building this passionate startup - MyGigsters, which was determined to gain traction and solve a growing problem. But with no visa, my chances to realise this dream were getting thinner. On one end, I was frustrated and disappointed that I could not pursue my startup dream. On the other hand, I felt guilty and scared as I was taking my young family through this uncertain journey.
Days passed, and a few days before my visa expiry, my only option was to move into a tourist visa, which would remove my work permit and our only income. It was genuinely more challenging for me to find resilience as no option under my control would help me continue my startup journey.
I drew all my savings and was ready to lodge a 'Tourist Visa' (which costs $5000 for a family). Seventy-two hours before my visa expired, deep down in my heart, I felt I needed to try something for the very last time. I contacted the Department of Innovation and Skills (South Australia) and requested them to sponsor me for their pilot visa program called 'Supporting Innovation in South Australia'.
I applied to this program 6 months ago but didn't hear from them, but fortunately, the Department responded to my request and, within 24 hours, sponsored my application and helped me apply for a new visa. Fast forward, this visa allowed me to continue my stay in Australia and allowed me to work on MyGigsters.
I didn't realise I was one strick from Gold. All I needed to do was take the strick.
Why adaptability and resilience matter
In the entrepreneurial journey, few things ever go according to plan. Market conditions shift, competitors emerge, and unexpected challenges arise. Being adaptable means recognising changes and adjusting your strategies and tactics accordingly. Embracing change allows your business to stay agile and relevant in a constantly evolving landscape.
Resilience is the ability to bounce back from setbacks and keep pushing forward. Entrepreneurship is an emotional rollercoaster, and maintaining the mental fortitude to weather the storms is crucial. By building resilience, you'll be better equipped to learn from your failures and capitalise on opportunities.
How to cultivate adaptability and resilience
- Embrace a growth mindset: Adopting a growth mindset means believing you can improve and learn from your experiences. This mentality enables you to see challenges as opportunities for growth and development.
- Stay informed: Keep an eye on industry trends and news to anticipate changes and adapt your strategies accordingly. Be proactive in identifying potential threats and opportunities.
- Foster a supportive network: Surround yourself with mentors, peers, and team members who can offer valuable advice, encouragement, and perspective during tough times. A strong support system can make all the difference in your ability to bounce back.
- Practice self-awareness: Reflect on your emotions and reactions to setbacks. Identifying patterns can help you develop strategies for coping with stress and maintaining a positive outlook.
- Focus on what you can control: In the face of uncertainty, focus on the aspects of your business that you can influence. Concentrating on what you can control will make you feel more empowered and less overwhelmed.
- Celebrate small victories: Acknowledge and celebrate your small wins along the way. This practice helps build resilience by reinforcing a sense of accomplishment and motivation, even in adversity.
By incorporating adaptability and resilience into your entrepreneurial toolkit, you'll be better prepared to navigate the inevitable ups and downs of the journey ahead. Remember, success isn't just about having a great idea or a solid plan; it's about having the mental and emotional strength to weather the storms and adapt to an ever-changing landscape.
Wishing you continued success in your entrepreneurial endeavours!
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