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How to Become an Entrepreneur in 2022

Key Points

Resources to find ideas, funding, and more on starting a business


For many people, entrepreneurship is the ultimate career goal. And we love entrepreneurs at NuvoDesk!

Starting a company can be one of the most rewarding and interesting opportunities you’ll ever get. When 90% of startups fail, we want to give you the tools you need to succeed! If you’re aware of the risks but you’re still determined to be an entrepreneur, start with the information in this article.

How to Become an Entrepreneur

how to become an entrepreneur checklist

1) Identify Profitable Startup Ideas

A successful startup begins with an idea. Here are some techniques for thinking of a product or service:

Ask your friends what frustrates them. 

How could you solve this problem for them? As you brainstorm, ask your friends to keep track of the day-to-day things that annoy them. Then go through their lists and look for problems you might be able to solve.

Get inspired by other emerging startups. 

For instance, if you go to Product Hunt, you can find a constantly updated curation of the newest apps, websites, and games, for digital inspiration. Meanwhile, Kickstarter is great for physical products.

Identify trends to future-proof your idea.

People need different products as the world continues to change. For example, Uber, Lyft, and other ride-sharing apps created a demand for a third-party app that will tell you the cheapest fares when someone needs a ride. Read trend predictions for your industry or market, or check out universal trend forecasting publications like Trend Hunter and Springwise. Then ask yourself, “If these predictions come true, which tools will be necessary?”

2) Identify and Focus on a Growing Category (or Categories)

Pick a category that interests you but isn’t overly competitive.

  • After you’ve picked a category, study all the products/services in that category.
  • What are each product’s benefits, and how do they vary?
  • What’s their packaging and marketing strategy?
  • What do reviewers say?
  • What are the potential improvements?
  • What services are people taking advantage of and why?

Once you’ve picked a product/service, consider questions like:

  • What can be done to improve it?
  • Can I add a new feature?
  • What about a different material?
  • Can I personalize it somehow?

3) Fill an Underserved Demand

Many people start successful businesses after noticing a gap in their market. For example, perhaps you learn there’s a shortage of high-quality sales outsourcing. Since you have experience in sales development and account management at early-stage sales companies, you might decide to offer this service to tech startups.

4) Make Something Better (or Cheaper) than What’s Out There

You don’t always need to develop something brand-new or even reinvent the wheel. If you can offer an existing product at a lower price point, better quality, or ideally, both, you’ll be able to attract plenty of customers. 

5) Validate Your Startup Idea with Buyer Persona Research

Once you’ve got an idea, you need to know other people will actually want your product or service. Start by understanding your buyer persona, i.e. the real people you plan to sell to. 

Once you’ve identified your ideal client, interviewing people who fit the bill should be an important component of your research. Show them a working demo of your product, ask what they like and what they don’t, how much they’d pay for it, how often they’d use it, and so on.

6) Start with a Minimum Viable Product (MVP)

An MVP is the simplest, most basic version of your tool or service possible. It’s functional enough to satisfy early customers and get a sense of what you should improve.

Starting small with an MVP keeps your costs low to start but allows room for growth as the product continues to be validated.

7) Create a Business Plan

A business plan is a formalized document that details your business goals and the steps you’ll take to achieve them. This may include marketing strategy, budget, and financial projections and milestones.

Your business plan also includes your company’s mission, vision, as well as long-term and short-term goals. This strategic planning helps guide the growth of your startup.

8) Continue to iterate based on feedback

Keep in mind that your MVP will not likely be enough to stay competitive in the market categories you choose.

Optimizing your flywheel: Generating interest and demand (marketing the product), securing customers (selling the product), gauging satisfaction, improving the product based on feedback. Repeat.

Gaining Experience as an Entrepreneur

There are two main ways to approach gaining experience as an entrepreneur: doing the work yourself or hiring for it.

Acquiring Experience Yourself

You can acquire experience as you develop your new business by:

Networking with other professionals.

Professional networking will expose you to more professionals you can learn from or even find a willing mentor. You can join online professional networks, like LinkedIn, to find out about virtual or in-person networking events to connect and meet other entrepreneurs.

Conducting independent research.

Conducting personal research from reputable sources and other entrepreneurs will help you better understand your responsibilities.  Behavioral research helps you find resources to simplify your business operations and grow your business as you scale.

Take entrepreneurial courses.

Exploring entrepreneurial studies through a college institution or certification course can offer more in-depth knowledge about breaking into the industry than typical internet sources.

Hiring for Experience

Oftentimes an entrepreneur beginning a business will hire for experience to guide them in the right direction.

Work with a business coach.

A paid option to gain experience is to work with a business coach or consultant. 

Business coach – This coach leads an entrepreneur toward solutions. This means that the entrepreneur is actually improving their own competency.

Business consultant – A consultant will solve problems for the entrepreneur as a contractor.

Add experienced individuals to your team.

Learn from people you add to your team. Their talents may fill the gaps in your own knowledge as time progresses. 

Ways to Finance Your Business

Many entrepreneurs typically grow their startups by bootstrapping (securing funding on their own), through small business loans, or by securing funding from investors. Here are some resources to check out:

SBA Funding Programs – The SBA offers resources to help you find lenders, secure investment capital, win grants, and more.

Incubators – A startup incubator provides resources to help grow the business in exchange for equity. 

Angel Investing – An angel investor uses their own money to invest and focus on helping entrepreneurs build and grow in exchange for equity. 

Venture Capital – A venture capitalist does not use their own money to invest and therefore takes fewer risks and has less agreeable terms, which is why you may want to avoid VC funding until you’re more established in your business. 

Counseling & Advocacy

Training, counseling, and advocacy can help you fill knowledge gaps.

SBA Learning Center – The SBA offers a learning platform “designed to empower and educate small business owners every step of the way.” This includes business guides, courses, and development programs.

Business Hubs – Some local governments cultivate business hubs that combine low-cost office space, networking, and other resources to support small businesses and develop the local ecosystem. These are location-specific and more common in urban areas.

Trade/Professional Associations and Business Groups – Membership in a professional association may help you build trust with your customers, but it often comes with additional perks such as job boards, legal resources, training courses, and more. These are location- or industry-specific.

Support Networks – You don’t have to go through the trials and tribulations of starting and running a business alone. Try entrepreneur networks, groups, and events where members share experiences and learn together.

Here’s how you can build your support network:

Find and attend entrepreneur events – The SBA offers both online and in-person events for entrepreneurs. Simply use their search engine to find the ones that make the most sense for your situation.

Join existing organizations and peer advisory boards – Organizations such as the Entrepreneurs’ Organization, the Tugboat Institute, and Vistage offer membership and resources to entrepreneurs.

Get a mentor or business coach – Personalized attention from a mentor or coach can help you work through issues one-on-one and help you develop as a leader.

Get Started

Starting your own company has pros and cons (as with anything we do in this life.) Success doesn’t happen overnight. Now that you know what it takes to become an entrepreneur, gain experience, and fund a business, we hope you can find a place at NuvoDesk!

By Leslie Radford
think like an entrepreneur graphic

How to Become a Successful Entrepreneur

Key Points

Learn 7 key characteristics of a successful entrepreneur


There is no magic spell that can transform you into a rich and successful entrepreneur overnight. However, for those who are prepared to work hard to succeed, there is an almost formulaic blend of entrepreneurial skills that can help set successful businessmen and women apart from the rest:

7 Key Characteristics of an Entrepreneur

Fall from the saddle

No matter how many refusals successful entrepreneurs receive, they are always prepared to dust themselves off and find an alternative way to get a “yes”. It’s this kind of tenacity that is required to take a business from idea to fruition and growth.

Fear of failure is one reason that many entrepreneurs don’t succeed. Great entrepreneurs view failure as a positive experience – something to learn from and overcome. All entrepreneurs inevitably make mistakes along the path to success. What matters most is that you own those mistakes and learn from them. You’re going to get bucked several times; Get back on the horse and ride.

Invest in a coach or mentor

Even the very best entrepreneurs of our time worked with other experts in their industry before going it alone. Finding a mentor or coach is a great way to learn more about your industry and yourself. Your mentor may even have made mistakes in business themselves, but that makes them the perfect person to learn from, giving you the chance to understand where they went wrong.

Coaches can help you get past roadblocks and inspire you to take calculated risks you wouldn’t normally. Sometimes we just need that little push to get us on the right track. Coaches can guide you on your journey to success.

Stay hungry and ambitious

Running a successful business is not an ego trip but rather a desire to grow and provide a better product or service for customers that keeps entrepreneurs hungry and ambitious. The moment that a business owner stops wanting to learn new things is the moment that complacency sets in, allowing others to overtake you and leave you behind. 

Evolve with the times

Any successful entrepreneur requires business agility, with the ability to learn and adapt to new methods, processes, or technology that can make their business stronger and more efficient. Market needs have always been dynamic: both the business and consumer worlds are ever-changing and what worked years or even months ago might not work tomorrow.

There are always new opportunities to enhance your offer and satisfy the needs of your customers and the market as a whole. A product developed strictly for your own needs would be classed more like a hobby; however, a product developed for the market must be designed to satisfy evolving market needs.

Nurture long-term business relationships

Business relationships matter. Your ability to nurture long-term working relationships with like-minded entrepreneurs within your industry will be one of the key factors in the long-term success of the business. Most entrepreneurs would agree it’s far easier to secure work from repeat customers than it is investing time and money into securing new customers.

Business relationships also include access to finance too. Every entrepreneur wants the very best opportunity to see their business proposition become an established company. This means entrepreneurs have to become highly investable. By nurturing relationships with angel and seed investors, venture capitalists, private investors, and even banks, you can set the wheels in motion to secure that all-important entrepreneur funding.

Be an inspiration

Even the richest, most experienced entrepreneurs cannot be good at everything! All entrepreneurs require a team of people around them that complement their skills. The real skill is not only hiring the best possible team to support you, it’s about hiring people who share your vision and passion. By inspiring and investing in your team, not only will they succeed but the business itself will too.

Trust your gut instinct

In some cases, your gut instinct and heart are still your very best guide for decision-making. Ultimately, no one knows as much about your business as you do. Listen to that voice inside your head. If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If something feels off, it’s probably not the right choice. Let your gut guide you.

Key Characteristics of an Entrepreneur infographic

By Leslie Radford
business startup concept

Tips for Starting a Business in an Uncertain Economy

Key Points

Learn what industries were affected during the pandemic along with tips for testing the waters for your new business venture.

Starting a small business is hard work in any environment, but it’s even more challenging in a tough economy. Small business owners must hone their business plans. If you create a thorough business plan for starting and growing your company you can stay focused on your goal when things inevitably get tough.

If you are thinking of becoming an entrepreneur, consider the following tips for successfully building your business in a challenging economy.

Tips for Starting a Business in an Uncertain Economy

1) Be Real with People.

Don’t gloss over the realities people are facing. Offer support.

2) Prepare to adapt.

Prepare for business to be slow, but also be open and willing to adapt. You may have to broaden your horizons or niche down.

3) Track your expenses.

Keep track of your finances. You need to know where every dollar goes. Cash flow is crucial in times of uncertainty.

4) Get clear on your audience and their problems.

Know the problems they face and how you can solve them. Don’t start a business if there is no need for your product or service. 

5) Build an audience first.

Network and build an audience before launching. You can build an audience for free through a blog and on social media. Make sure to collect feedback — it will tell you whether or not you’re heading in the right direction.

6) Get moving.

Crises inevitably end. If you start moving now, you’ll be the one standing while others take time to get back up and running. Start small and grow over time.

7) Do your research.

Nearly 50% of small businesses fail within the first five years. That number jumps to almost two-thirds by 10 years. There are plenty of reasons why a business fails, but CB Insights found that 35% of startups fail because there’s no market need.  The way around this is to research your target audience before starting a business. Look into economic trends, consumer behavior, audience demographics, and competition.

The Truth About Uncertainty

Economic Uncertainty Headline

While uncertain times surely make it harder to build a business, the truth is that there truly is no certain or perfect time to do so. If you’re considering starting a new venture, evaluate your life, relationships, and bank account and decide if they’re sturdy enough to ride the waves of entrepreneurship. 

Be prepared for the ups and downs of business-building. Add safety nets before starting your business (whether that’s having X months’ living expenses saved, a healthy pipeline of leads, etc.), and know that there’s always risk involved.

Data from several sources continues to support those looking to start a new business. The Census Bureau reported that more than 4.4 million new companies were created in the U.S. during 2020 — a record-setting high. This is a 24% increase from 2019 and 51% higher than the average from 2010-2019. 

The influx of entrepreneurial activity during 2020 didn’t just set records in the US. It was also the largest increase of any country in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development or the G20 with available data.

Before taking the leap, consider which industries have been most affected by the pandemic and which may be the most profitable. Retail, food service, and logistics have seen major losses. However, finance, construction, and eCommerce barely slowed down. 

Your chosen industry plays a part, as well as the amount of additional funding you can get from the government and private stipends. But it’s clear that the economy is getting back on its feet, and more people than ever before are setting up their own businesses.

When Is The Best Time to Start a Business

Ask any entrepreneur when is the best time to start a business and they’ll probably tell you “there is no perfect time.” Every business takes dedication, strong leadership, a great product or service, and a little luck.

Research from the Kauffman Foundation found that 30% of new entrepreneurs in 2020 were unemployed when they started their companies. Some entrepreneurs had ideas brewing for a while and took advantage of downtime during lockdown to create their own companies. 

See what the experts are saying.

The Bottom Line

There are unique benefits associated with starting a business in any economy. If you do your homework, think strategically, and take advantage of every opportunity to minimize costs while maximizing the value to your customers, you can build a foundation for long-lasting business success.


By Leslie Radford
start a business

Small Business Ideas that are Easy to Get Started​

Small Business Ideas that are Easy to Get Started

By Leslie Radford

Key Takeaways

Create Digital Products or Courses

Sell Print-on-Demand Posters, Greeting Cards, and Prints

Other Ideas

At NuvoDesk, we cater to entrepreneurs. We know that starting a business can be exciting and stressful. We’ve compiled a few business ideas that are easy to start and have low overhead and risk. These are some of the businesses that flourish in our facility: The beginners, the boot-strappers, the innovative thinkers.

Create Digital Products or Courses​

You can create digital products like music, courses, videos, and templates where there aren’t recurring manufacturing or shipping costs to worry about. Your margins will be high, making it the best business to start.

Just ask yourself, “What is useful enough that people are willing to pay to download it?” 

You could provide informational videos, teach a subject, compose your own music, or create downloadable templates.

NuvoDesk has a media production room that provides equipment perfect for podcasts, photography, and videos. Take advantage of:

  • Green Screen Wall
  • Camera
  • Lights

Sell Print-on-Demand Posters, Greeting Cards, and Prints

If you’re artistically inclined or know your way around a camera, you can dropship using a print-on-demand business model.

You can turn your work into products such as posters or framed wall art, even greeting cards. There are plenty of digital templates and mockup generators like Placeit you can use to showcase your products without having to print out each item and conduct your own photoshoots.

Etsy is also a great place to sell your downloads or take orders for shipping. Use a local printing company to print larger items to be shipped.

NuvoDesk can provide a scanner for many needs you may have, a physical address for your business, and high-speed internet to do your work.

Other Ideas

Other business ideas that will flourish at NuvoDesk with little overhead and start-up costs:

  • Freelance Writer
  • Freelance Graphic Artist
  • Life/Business Coaches
  • Travel Planner
  • Consultant

We support our entrepreneurs with all kinds of services at NuvoDesk to make sure you are prosperous with your new business. These are just a few great ways to get started doing something you love.

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