Mentors, community mavens, peers, all have something to offer you and your business, if only you ask.
Now, for a start, meeting people is one of the best things you can do as an entrepreneur.While it is certainly possible to start a business on your own, it is almost impossible to advance far without people helping you along the way, in one way or another.
These are the best types of people to meet either for partnership, resources knowledge, or connections:
The mentor: This is someone who has done what you’re doing, sometimes many times over. As a result, he or she will have a wealth of knowledge, wisdom, and experience that you don’t have, and will be able to help you out of a number of problems with advice, resources and new insights.
And there are many key places to find mentors, which have their own advantages and disadvantages.
The community maven: One of the best ways to build a reputation and tap into your local market is to meet people who already have a reputation in your local area for two main benefits:
First, you will gain the secondary reputation advantage of being associated with this community influencer who could share your material and give it a huge boost, or send new social media followers your way.
Second, this person will be able to recommend resources, opportunities and contacts for your needs.
Peers: These are other business owners and professionals in your area trying to do the same things you’re trying to do.
Since they occupy a similar niche, their network of contacts is likely to be highly valuable to you, as they will also be facing most of the same problems and opportunities as you. In the end you will be able to work together to find solutions and new directions.
Local talent: These are people connected into your region skilled in one key area -or more- who can be tapped into your business.
You can find these people fresh out of college, starting businesses of their own or even working under other entrepreneurs.
The investor: For your business to take off and keep going, it needs working capital, unless you have a sum of capital to work with on your own. Otherwise you’ll need to find an investor to build momentum or bail you out of tough problems.
Many key areas to find investors abound, including dedicated platforms and events.
Investors are also valuable sources of wisdom and connections, especially if they end up holding equity in your business.