There are plenty of important components of an entrepreneur’s journey to creating a successful business. While you can focus on any single part of this journey and practically write a book on it, there is one key trait that, in the estimation of many, rises above all else in importance — the ability to overcome obstacles. To illustrate why this is so important, we’ve turned to the case of Jesse Willms. The accomplished e-commerce entrepreneur has made a career of excelling in his pursuits, including his ability to overcome whatever obstacles lay in his path. Read on for a look at how he’s done this and how business owners, in general, can accomplish this in their own work.
Jesse Willms and the Power of Education
Perhaps the most fundamental obstacle an entrepreneur must overcome is their lack of knowledge in a given space. While it’s not necessary for a business owner to be the foremost expert in their field in order to create a successful business, it is important to have a certain intellectual foundation upon which to build. This is true when considering the field itself, or the pursuit of business at large. Even small improvements in your knowledge in a given space can have a big payoff down the line.
We see this clearly illustrated in the life of Jesse Willms, who is widely known for his voracious appetite for learning. This was first on display when he was still in high school and contemplating how he wanted to direct his life’s pursuits. At that time, he had just the smallest inkling that he might want to pursue a career as an entrepreneur, so he decided to become more knowledgable on the subject. He began to read through memoirs by some of history’s business greats and pull insights from their perspective on business and the world in general. The practice soon ignited a lifelong love of the field and helped push him to start his own career in business.
This example helps showcase how an entrepreneur can approach the inherent obstacle of knowledge accumulation. If a passion for learning can be cultivated, it can be a powerful asset that can help a person achieve a wide range of personal goals. In the field of business specifically, it can be used to look to the examples set by other accomplished individuals in the field after whom a career can be modeled. The more you’re able to learn en route to creating your own business, the better prepared you may be to find success.
Identifying Obstacles Early
Once you have a sufficient foundation of knowledge in an area another key element of overcoming any obstacles that may arise is the ability to identify them. This skill, while seemingly simple on its face, can actually be more difficult than we give it credit for. That’s because many of us are inherently averse to seeing the problems present with a course of action if we’re already set on that path. We may convince ourselves that an obstacle is not overly dire or that it may not even be present at all. While this line of thinking can be tempting, it can also be a death knell for a fledgling business venture.
Rather than avoiding the acknowledgment of obstacles, an entrepreneur does well to identify them and meet them head-on. This is again an area in which a foundation of knowledge can be an asset — it allows us to anticipate obstacles far in advance by learning from the difficulties others have personally encountered in their work. The further in advance we can spot these obstacles, the faster we can endeavor to resolve them so they don’t impact our work. However, let an obstacle sit for too long and you might find that it becomes many times more difficult to resolve. Approaching your work with this mindset can be a key step towards finding eventual success.
How Jesse Willms Identifies Opportunity
Another inherent obstacle to the work of an entrepreneur is the identification of opportunity. It’s been said that everyone’s had a million-dollar idea in their life, what separates successful business owners from everyone else is that they know when to act. This concept, however true it may be, poses the difficult question of how we can know when to act on our own ideas. Overcoming the ambiguity around this can be another key part of the business journey.
A recent example from the life of Jesse Willms nicely helps to illustrate a way forward in this area. The e-commerce entrepreneur has recently been capturing attention for a new network of vehicle history report websites that he’s created. Those websites, which offer consumers free reports detailing the history of pre-owned vehicles, have garnered increasing traffic of late and have become a key part of the vehicle buying process for many users.
The idea for the websites, however, wasn’t as straightforward as it may seem. While vehicle history reports have been around for some time, they’ve often been prohibitively expensive for a consumer to obtain. The entrepreneur identified this as an issue for many vehicle buyers and saw that if he could offer these reports for free, then he could work to ease their vehicle buying journey. When he saw the model put in place by free credit reports, where revenue is generated through advertising and sponsorship, he felt he had a path forward that could work for his own concept. He implemented this business model and the rest, as they say, is history.
Pulling It All Together
While the above overview is not a comprehensive look at every obstacle an entrepreneur might encounter in their work, it does provide a good place to get started. By touching on some foundational obstacles you might encounter, we’re able to get a better idea of the obstacle resolution process in general.
Consider taking these ideas to heart and using them to leverage your own ability to resolve obstacles along your entrepreneurial journey. Also, consider the example set by Jesse Willms along his own path. The e-commerce entrepreneur has shown a marked ability to overcome obstacles throughout his career and that example can be an asset to others in the business world seeking to better understand that lesson. Though the work of an entrepreneur can be extremely varied from case to case, implementing the above learnings can be a key marker along your path to success.