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How to Build an Online Business by Bernadette Schwerdt

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Chapter 9How to bumble your way to success

Launching a startup may make you feel like you’re making it up as you go and lurching from one chaotic situation to another. Expect that. I asked entrepreneurs of many years standing a very specific question: ‘How did your business get started?’ while some had meticulous business plans in place, many openly acknowledged they had nothing of the sort and had no idea what they were doing. In other words, they bumbled their way to success. Management consultants call this process ‘managing uncertainty’, ‘negotiating complexity’ or ‘dealing with ambiguity’. I call it bumbling. Lots of entrepreneurs bumble their way to success. They put one foot in front of the other and hope that it all turns out. Don’t judge yourself too harshly if you feel like you’re bumbling. It’s part of the process of getting started.

Everybody Bumbles

I did a TEDx talk called ‘How to bumble your way to success’. After the talk, a man came up to me and said he was a bumbler. I asked him what he did for a job.

‘I’m a surgeon.’

I didn’t get his card.

Visit www.bernadetteschwerdt.com.au/book to watch the speech.

What not to ask when you’re getting started

When I created the video series ‘Secrets of Online Entrepreneurs’ (which was the MVP for the book of the same name), I have to be honest and admit that I didn’t know what I was doing. I was bumbling. I had a clear goal (to make the video series), but I was a bit hung up on the ‘how’ I was going to do it. All I knew ...

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