When a business owner finds that they have a successful small business, they have a tendency to look beyond it and consider opening up another one. That can either turn out to be a massive triumph or a dismal failure; it depends on a variety of factors.
The bottom line is that ambitious entrepreneurs should think very carefully about the decision to take a leap into adding another business.
Is it an Emotional Decision?
There’s a good chance, when you decide to open another small business, that you don’t realize what your true motivation is for doing it. You will tell yourself that you’ve found another great business model, but it could very well be a subconscious, emotional response to the success of your first business.
It behooves you to take a close look at what is motivating this decision because you may find that, rather than creative inspiration, it has more to do with your residual excitement about your past success.
Are the Skills Interchangeable?
So, it’s a given that if you get the idea to start a second business, then you most likely have the experience and resources to at least get to the point of opening the doors. That, however, does not mean that you have the skillset to make a business work in an entirely different field or industry.
Don’t be seduced by the prospect of potential that may or may not manifest. A solid understanding of business in general will definitely translate across different industries, but it doesn’t guarantee that you will understand how a whole other set of customers think and act. You need to be very honest with yourself about whether you know what you’re doing.
Have You Considered the Cost?
Try to recall everything you went through to make your first business healthy and productive enough to be successful, and how much time, energy, and money it required.
There is no reason why you could not do it again, but you first need to make sure that you have the passion and drive to put that kind of energy into your new venture and do it all over again.
The issue is not that entrepreneurs are impetuous. The problem many times comes from a place of blind ambition which, if unchecked, takes the place of careful planning and thoughtful strategy. Fools rush in.
There are plenty of entrepreneurs who successfully run multiple businesses at the same time; it is by no means unreasonable to do so.
There’s just something you should keep in mind when you’re considering adding a new business, and that is to not underestimate the work that will be involved. Those of you reading this are not stupid. You have already built a successful business, which does not happen easily.
There is just a tendency to assume that the second project will be easy because you’ve done it before, and although your experience will definitely be useful, it will take just as much effort as the first time, in its own right.
Stephanie is the Marketing Director at Talkroute and has been featured in Forbes, Inc, and Entrepreneur as a leading authority on business and telecommunications.
Stephanie is also the chief editor and contributing author for the Talkroute blog helping more than 100k entrepreneurs to start, run, and grow their businesses.