Being a successful entrepreneur is very different from being a good idea person or even being a prolific inventor. While it is often overlooked, the reality is that it takes much more to become a business success than just having a good idea and access to money.
Before going out to deliver your next pitch to a potential investor, try using the below checklist to make sure you have a favorable rating for each of the following factors that should make you even more attractive to an investor.
How heartbreaking would it be if your great idea wasn’t able to become a viable business entity because you didn’t prepare the best environment for it to survive. Why not become the whole package instead of just focusing on one ingredient?
How would you rate yourself for the following:
Your Passion, grounded in a good business sense, is vital to show you will not give up as soon as the going gets tough.
Your Attitude needs to exude confidence, enthusiasm, respect and realism. As soon as you cross the line into arrogance, desperation or delusional behavior, others will quickly sense that and run the other way.
Your Work Ethic shows that you care and are committed to the success of your business, your customers and those that invest in you.
Your Business Model needs to show that you know your numbers. You won’t be profitable if you don’t know your industry, can’t control your costs and don’t have solid margins.
Your Business’ Health needs to be strong and growing before you request assistance from others. Investors aren’t interested in bailing you out of bad financial decisions or a struggling existence.
Your Idea’s Originality needs to be covered by patent protection if the concept can easily be copied and manufactured quicker and cheaper by a competitor.
Your Recent Sales History is your proof that there is a market for your product or service idea. It is your job to prove your concept first.
Your Current Investment In Yourself tells others what you have already tried, uncovers any red flags, and suggests where additional assistance can be provided.
Your Future Plans are an indication of how much planning you have already put in, what direction you are moving towards, any contingency plans you may have, and how you plan to spend future investment resources.
Your Business Valuation and expected growth rates need to be grounded in reality. Do you know what you want/need? Can you think on your feet if you are put on the spot to make a quick decision on an offer?
Your Current Partners demonstrate that know how to supplement any gaps in your areas of expertise and can fill them with the right people.
Your Pitch shows that you can clearly and enthusiastically explain what business you are in, i.e., what your product is and what problem it solves.
Your Personality is the first impression you make that reflects your salesmanship, your trustworthiness, and your compatibility to work through any difficulties or conflicts with others.