Scott Lipow | Crain's Connecticut

In this ongoing series, we ask executives, entrepreneurs and business leaders about mistakes that have shaped their business philosophy.

Scott Lipow

Background:  

Founded in 2011, Fairfield-based Six7 Marketing provides integrated marketing services including search engine optimization, website design and development, branding, social media strategies and e-commerce consultation.

The Mistake:

When you announce that you are planning to start a company, it easy to imagine that everyone will be supportive of your goals. But there are some people who don’t want you to succeed.

They’re not going to tell you that directly, but there are little things you notice that hint at their inner feelings. Even the people that you might expect to be on your side are, all of a sudden, saying things like, “I didn’t start that, so maybe I’m not rooting for it.”

There are some people who don’t want you to succeed.

The Lesson:

It sounds clichéd, but you just have to believe in yourself. I’m a competitive person – and while the negativity did not have a great impact on me directly, I think it adds on to an already tough process.

When you are starting a company, you are already low on resources and stretched thin. You don’t need to get the feeling that a friend or acquaintance may be thinking, “Eh, he’s not ready for this.” You want to block that out and keep focused ahead.

You need to remind yourself that anybody who is supporting you is wonderful. That fuels you because you know they are optimistic and positive people and they see your goal is in line with being a productive contributor.

Also, don’t expect immediate gratification. Many experts say that it takes five years to reach the point of a successful business. From experience, I can tell you that it is true, because there are layers to every situation that you need to address. There is a layer of infrastructure, the layer of nurturing relations with your client, the layer of packaging your services in a manner that your clients are comfortable with, and the layer of delivering value to your clients successfully. Now, five years into my business, I see how all of that played out and I can step back and say, ‘Yes, this is a healthy business.”

When you are getting started, there is a challenge in establishing credibility and having businesses trust that you can deliver for them. When a business trusts you and is paying you, you need to prove you will be a value who is there for them.

And, of course, you need to believe in yourself. My approach to business is being all about quality. We want to stand by our work and have high-end work at all times.

At the end of the day, it is crucial to believe in what you’re doing. Don’t listen to people who say, “Oh, most new businesses fail.” If you keep on believing in what you are trying to achieve, you will figure out a way to succeed.

Follow Scott Lipow on Twitter at @Six7Marketing.

Photo courtesy of Scott Lipow 

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