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I often tell entrepreneurs I work with that before they even think about execution, i.e., customers acquisition, business model, partners, team, etc. they should focus on defining 3 things: • the pain they are going to kill for • their customers with • what they offer (I call it their painkiller with delight).

Many of them find it difficult to stay concentrated on aligning pain, customers, and the offer – they are eager to get going, of course!

However, in my conversations with them, I also often inject a conversation about what their 2 guiding stars should be:

1) The Why Every entrepreneur should ask themselves, Why am I doing this? What are my personal reasons for why I decided to start the business? Think about it; all entrepreneurs that do have the courage to start a business are prepared to forsake a decent salary, vacations, spending time with friends and family, etc.

2) The Vision That is, what is the future state that doesn't exist yet but that the company will contribute to? The vision can – and could really benefit from - be shared by other companies (even competitors!), organizations, and missions. However, those who first and foremost should profit from progressing towards the vision should be the customers, the end-users, and – if you are a social entrepreneur – beneficiaries.

If you think this sounds over-ambitious, here are my top three reasons why any entrepreneur – even those who are crunched for time – should set aside time and think about their guiding stars:

• In every single decision you make for moving your company one step further, the answers to these two questions are your guiding stars. In the answers you will have a solid ground to stand on for every “yes”, “no”, “never”, and “always” that affects your business.

• With a clear view on the vision in particular, you will increase the likelihood of recruiting the right people to your business, i.e., employees who are there with you because they share the vision, and therefore will love to come to work even during rainy days.

• When things get tougher than tough – and they will – you will be able to go back to these guiding stars and get what you need to find the path to re-booth, re-launch, or pivot.

Please use the comment section below for further discussions. What is your main take away and what else do you believe is important to remember your why and your cause?

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