The importance of building your support network when starting a business

Today, I’m going to talk about the importance of building a support network around you. This is something that I set up when I first started my business because it was recommended to me by people who have set up their own businesses and went through the entrepreneurship journey.

One of the recommendations given to me was to find people who could act as my mentor, someone who had been through the same experience or has been in their business for two to three years that I could speak with. I was really fortunate because I had a number of people in my network whom I could ask about different areas of building the business and for advice.

One component of building your support network is to seek out people who have been through something that might be kind of related to what you are doing, whether it is within the category you are working in or not. What I have found is that I do not necessarily have to speak with people who work in marketing or strategy as I do, but I could just speak with people who have already set up a business and have gone through the process of registering a company, finding a secretary, thinking about funding requirements and structuring partnerships. All of this is really invaluable and the best place to get it is from people within your network.

Reach out to people either in your community on LinkedIn or attend startup or small business meetups. There are tons of these meetups in Singapore, so I really encourage you to get along to those.

Another component of building your support network is building your personal support network which is also really critical because during the startup journey, it is very tough and you will need all the support you can get. Your individual mental and physical well-being is largely determined on making sure you have people around you who can share the experience you went through.

I found out that I could not have done my business without the amazing network of supportive friends around me and a partner who was absolutely mentally invested into the idea that I was building. This is because the process of starting and building a business can sometimes get quite tough and it is important that we have that network of people who understand the journey that we are going through who we can turn to for guidance and advice.

People are incredibly interested in the business that you are building, they are actually really invested and bought into the idea because a lot of people dream about doing this themselves and a lot of people said to me “Look, you know it does take some bravery to actually quit your nice job and go and start your own thing.” So they really do care about this journey that you are going through.

I am really fortunate that I’ve got a fantastic group of friends and family around me who are super supportive. I’ve got people who I can turn to, to talk about the wins and the losses and the things that I am learning and just get feedback from some smart people along the way.

So make sure that you know as you are going into starting a business do not try and do everything yourself and think you can solve everything, look at the support network around you and ask for help and support.