If there was one crime that successful entrepreneurs have never committed, that’s to have a back-up plan. Yes, this is what Sachin Mittal strongly believes in. ‘Having’ a back-up plan is an entrepreneurial sin and is a sure shot way to business failure. Chances are that if you are reading this, you don’t really believe this idea yet. You are probably thinking of all those management lessons or your discussions with well-wishing relatives and friends where you have been told to have a back-up plan always, to save up for the rainy day, to always think of something to fall back on, and that is the matured and intelligent thing to do. Well, it might be, but it also makes success almost impossible. Why am I saying this? Simple…if you have a back-up plan, it simply means that you expect yourself to fail.
In the spectrum of entrepreneurship
If you undertake a survey and go on to ask all the mediocre entrepreneurs who have not really made it big till now, you will find all of them had a back-up plan. On the contrary, go ask any successful entrepreneur about their back-up plan. They wouldn’t have any. Never had in the first place, since failing wasn’t really an option for them. They have never thought they would fail and hence never really had a back-up plan. Have you ever heard Zuckerberg say that ‘If Facebook fails, I will go back to college’ or Schultz say ‘If Starbucks fail I will sell cars’. No, because they have never thought they would fail in the first place. Having a back-up plan essentially means you expect to fail and people who think that, usually do.
The ‘trying’ people
One of the most common sayings in the corporate world is ‘I’ll try my best Sir’. Sachin Mittal believes people are usually divided into two categories – one category who always tries and the other who makes it happen. Think about it, is there actually any meaning of the word ‘try’? It’s just an excuse isn’t it? Either you fail or you succeed, there’s no middle ground.
A doctor might say I’ll try to save him. But ultimately he will either be able to save him or wouldn’t. Outcome wise, it is always a binary spectrum and the less people justify mediocrity by using the word ‘try’ the better it is, the more chance of them succeeding in life and business. It is usually people who are not confident about themselves and their own abilities, who ‘try’ and it is them who have a back-up plan in place so that when their ‘trial’ fails they have something to fall back on.
Most entrepreneurs fail precisely due to this loop. Having a back-up plan is almost like a crime for an entrepreneur. It is the sure shot proof that you know you will fail. Have you ever heard of someone getting married with a back-up spouse in place?
Secret for Success
Well, the first secret of success is to not have a back-up plan as you have already understood by now. Sachin Mittal says that a successful entrepreneur always believes in his goals and aspirations with absolute certainty. Of course one should not just jump into anything and everything without calculating the costs and thinking it through. Take your time, think and plan well before taking any major decisions. Always be ready to change and be flexible enough to make adjustments when needed, but do not have a back-up plan.
Your planning should be solid. Real entrepreneurs who have what it takes have the guts to dream big and take the plunge. Believe with full force what your aim is and pursue it with everything you have. You will prevail. You wouldn’t need a back-up plan…ever.