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Overcoming Challenges with Funding

Are you a fundable founder who wants to learn how to raise capital? We have 2 spots open for our Cohort #3 running Oct 28-Dec 16, 2020, every Wednesday evening. This year, it’s FREE! Applications are DUE BY OCT 19, 2020 at 12:00pm EDT. Apply HERE.

 

First, let’s start off by saying how grateful and excited we are when we hear from our readers! Nobody likes investing all their time in writing if nobody reads it … we’re fortunate. You guys and gals interact with us and we thank you for it.

A common concern that we hear from founders is how hard it is to raise capital. Our founder at The Growth Warrior heard it so often, that she built this business anchored in the intention of changing that. It’s tough out there. And it can feel especially tough for big-spirited and talented individuals, some of whom have left active employment to venture into business.

How You Can Learn from Promise’s Childhood Experience

Here’s a bit of background on her childhood experience. Each of us grows up facing our own set of challenges. Like most kids, I played sports and developed strong friendships. However, my retrospective nature would take the better part of me at most times. I would spend most time alone, reading, watching documentaries, and stuff like that.

Seems perfectly normal, right?

Promise did things a bit differently. She played sports and read a lot, too. But she used her quiet time differently than the rest of us. Rather than feel bored alone, she used her time to turn herself around, analyzing what was working, what wasn’t and how to proceed with intention. Her strong reading habit is still a major part of her current lifestyle. Reading makes us all more knowledgeable and allows us to learn about other people’s challenges. And, more importantly, to learn how they solved them. To this day, Promise associates her business success with the reading culture she developed as a child.

She wasn’t threatened or limited by her own gaps or perceived weaknesses. Instead, she let them fuel her. Promise did not sit down and wallow in nothingness. She worked to overcome her challenges. And guess what? She did!

The True State of Business Funding

Nearly everyone’s childhood story is relatable to what most entrepreneurs have to go through in accessing funds for their business. We can all recall the times that we wanted something so badly, like a trip to Disney or a candy bar or cookie in the jar at the back of the counter or whatever, but it was out of reach. Despite being armed with relevant growth hacking techniques, most startups fail for the mere reason of lack of capital. Sure, there are other reasons, too, like creating a product that the market doesn’t want or doesn’t know that it needs. The wrong leadership team can also wreak havoc on the success of a startup.

The media is really hyping up the “fun” of being an entrepreneur. There are even dedicated programs today encouraging high school students to bypass college and begin a startup. It’s been overly glamorized in the absence of the harsh reality of how hard it is to fundraise. While such stories can be a constant source of hope and inspiration for female founders, talented innovators, and other aspiring underdog entrepreneurs, the true state of business funding tells a totally different story. Every year, the venture capital pie gets bigger but the BIPOC and female share of it doesn’t seem to get any larger – still hovering year after year around 1% for the former and 3% for the latter.

A critical look at the funding of many businesses highlights a huge gap between business founders and entrepreneurs, with the former being the main beneficiaries making them conditional founders. It’s this realization drives our team here at The Growth Warrior to dig further for the truth.

We researched different companies; from investment-based firms, to research firms, and investment communities. From our findings, it was clear that access to business funding was limited to certain groups of people and regions. Below is the highlight of this group with an almost guaranteed access to business funding.

  • A majority of investors are white males, most of whom had a college education
  • Most of them live in Silicon Valley, Boston and New York City
  • A large number attended elite schools and have a close connection with able investors

How to Leverage on the Way of a Growth Warrior to Overcome Business Funding Challenges 

There fact is that many businesses, both underdog firms and those with a higher potential of being successful, have been denied easy access to business funds. Most never raise the capital they need. The ones that do raise the money become scarred in the process. Now that’s the bad news.

The good news? These challenges are the basic elements that shape a person and preparing him or her or them for greatness and business success. However, this is based on the condition that we each work to overcome the challenges before us.

Transforming your mindset is hard. Learning how to raise money isn’t. In fact, we are offering a Masterclass, Cohort #3 running 8 weeks Oct 28-Dec 16, 2020. Graduates will meet with a VC investor to apply what they learned. If you are a fundable founder, submit an application by Oct 19. We only have 2 spots left! Because 2020 has been such a tough year, we are offering this FREE for this cohort only. Apply HERE.

Success doesn’t make anyone an exceptional human being. You too can do it! Many others have done it successfully. Having doubts? Check what we found out.

  • Since 2007, there has been a 58% rise in non-white female business founders in the U.S. who own 4 out of every 10 business
  • There has been a significant rise in non-white venture capitalists offering investment opportunities for both established businesses and startups

The freedom in today’s world is enough to break the notion that business success is dependent on the support of venture capitalists – some have made it on their own. While we at The Growth Warrior strive to help struggling and talented entrepreneurs, we can’t do it alone. We rely on sponsors and require that you, the mentees and founders, give it everything you’ve got to make it happen!

Yes! You’ve heard it right. It’s possible. I have done it. Others have done it. You can do it too. All it takes is a transformed mindset and hard work.

Promise Phelon is The Growth Warrior
Promise Phelon

AMA

This week’s question comes from Sanjana:

How do I pay myself during the early stages of growing the business?

The reality is that most founders don’t pay themselves! Here at The Growth Warrior, we uphold the principle of “no scarcity.” That means, you create a situation where your bills are covered. Nothing extra is something that you’ll have to navigate but at least find a way to get your bills paid each month and manage that reality first. Then, as your business grows, you can refocus on saving.

As for approaches to paying yourself at the early stages, there are several options. Ideally, revenues are the way to go – try to generate income to cover your expenses. But that’s really tough to do upfront. Many founders accumulate credit card debt, take out a business loan or a second mortgage to create the capital they need for their business and their personal bills. Of course, that’s risky and not the right approach for everyone. Crowdfunding is particularly useful if you have a tangible product, tech you can touch for example. Or some consumer good product that small investors (usually $10-25 each but increasingly in the $100-250, $500 and $1000 range) can receive in exchange for their contribution to your fund. Friends, family, angel investors can all potentially provide you with the money you’re looking for. However, they are taking on the risk, so they get a piece of your business if they contribute capital to it. Grants are challenging to win but they offer another option. Best of luck!

 

 WEEKLY WRAP-UP

 

Lead photo by Robert Bogdan from Pexels

 

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