More to it than just luck

PUBLISHED : Monday, 28 May, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 28 May, 2012, 12:00am


Serviced offices are particularly useful for start-up companies, providing an upmarket address, ready-made facilities on flexible terms, and making upgrading or downsizing easy.

With its worldwide network of more than 1,200 offices in 520 cities, Regus has been in touch with aspiring entrepreneurs for more than 20

years and understands the problems start-ups face.

The company has now published Growth in a Difficult Decade, a book of suggestions and advice from successful entrepreneurs on setting up and running a business. All proceeds are donated to the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

The book probes the assumption that being a successful entrepreneur depends on luck and good timing, and this was discussed in a meeting with entrepreneurs representing Hong Kong.

For Andy Ann, who founded digital media and advertising company New Digital Noise in 2002, being an entrepreneur is not about being lucky. It's about being in the game long term.

Yat Siu, founder and chief executive of Outblaze, a media services and solutions company, says: 'Entrepreneurs need to believe they can create luck. Unless you are optimistic, you cannot be successful. It depends on you if you look at something as an opportunity or as a problem.'

Douglas Young, founder and chief executive of G.O.D., encourages budding entrepreneurs to create advantages from their disadvantages.

Entrepreneurs appreciate their unlucky periods and accept failure as part of the process, because it offers a chance to learn.

According to Siu, failure is the best teacher and school pupils should be taught how to fail.

'Success is a bad teacher. You can't emulate success by 'being successful'. Failing is learning,' he says.

Tony Chan, who runs a web-based service that connects entrepreneurs and investors for venture capital projects, says that a period of discovery can emerge out of a crisis.

Young points out that without the downs, you will not get the ups and he says he actually enjoyed the downward cycle in a business, knowing that it would lead to an upswing.

'If you don't live these ups and downs, you have never lived. But it can't be a personal joyride, I am responsible for lots of people,' he says.

Passion, problem-solving ability, recognising one's weaknesses, creativity, communication and leadership skills are highlighted as examples of entrepreneurship.