Before any business owner can successfully attract investors, they have to fully prepare themselves. Entrepreneurs must do their homework in order to answer all the questions, and address all the concerns that investors might raise before making an investment decision. But, this preparation doesn't end here.
Once a verbal deal is made, the business owner still proceeds through due diligence checks that may take several months, all while continuing to successfully run their business.
With the deal done, the entrepreneur faces a new set of challenges. Not only does the business owner have to keep the business growing and thriving, she also has to effectively meet the needs of her investors.
The enterprise no longer runs as a sole proprietorship, for example. With investors now involved, the entrepreneur effectively reports to a board of directors who own a stake in the business. These persons place high expectations on the business owner - sometimes far greater than the expectations that the business owners place on themselves.
As the entrepreneur makes every effort to meet these expectations, she could spend even more time on her enterprise than she did as a sole proprietor. Additionally, she must distribute the financial resources in different ways as well.
The gains may significantly outweigh the demands. Investors not only play a significant role in the financial health of the business, they can also bolster the entrepreneur's confidence in herself and motivate her to build the enterprise in ways that she may not have otherwise considered alone. By meeting the expectations of her investors, she takes the business to the next level.
Ultimately, investors support and encourage business owners to aim higher. As they make sacrifices and take risks, entrepreneurs who successfully draw in investors also ascend to new heights of accomplishment not only for themselves, but for their businesses as well.
John Cho is a partner with KPMG Enterprise in Toronto, Ontario.