Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Will Ward – Industry Arabic – On Top 5 Mistakes When Starting A New Business

Leaders Perception Magazine is currently running an interview series called – What Are The Top 5 Mistakes People Make When Starting A New Business?

Today, we had the opportunity to interview Will Ward who is a Founder/CEO at Industry Arabic.

Interviewee Name: Will Ward

Company: Industry Arabic

Will Ward’s favourite quote: Napoleon Hill, one of the original self-help authors, once said, “Patience, persistence and perspiration make an unbeatable combination for success.” As a linguist, I appreciate the alliteration. As a businessman, I keep this quote and my backstory in mind to remind me of how far I’ve come whenever I need to find motivation.

The Interview

Thank you so much for joining us today! Tell us a little bit about yourself. What is your backstory?

Will Ward : Hello! Since high school history class, I’ve developed a lifelong interest in Middle Eastern Studies: from its beautifully long and complex history, to its language, culture and food. I completed my undergrad in Middle Eastern Studies and with fluency in Arabic, after which I got my first gig as a translator. I loved what I did, and decided to solidify my career choice with a masters at Oxford. I moved to Cairo in 2007, where I built up my competency in Arabic writing, journalism, and international relations. After years of managing large accounts and learning the ins and out, I decided it was time to start my own venture targeting large businesses, governments, universities, and law firms. I founded Industry Arabic in 2011 as a side project. It took three years of hustling and establishing a clientele before I was brave enough to quit my other job and go full time. While still small, my company has built our reputation up as one of the best English/Arabic translation services in the game.

In your opinion, what makes your company stand out? Any examples?

Will Ward : My motto has always been to find one thing you can do better than anyone else in order to become the obvious first choice for customers. Our focus on just Arabic translation has allowed us to stand out against larger, multi-language translation companies. I think many software companies are an obvious answer to one-trick ponies that stand out; but I’ll go a bit farther and suggest companies like Scrub Daddy or Crocs. They have fully committed to the formula that initially worked for them and stayed in their lane in order to find generational success.

What are the TOP 5 mistakes people make when starting a new business? Please share advice/examples for all of them.

Will Ward : 1. Burnout — There is only so much a person can achieve in a day. Ensuring you are showing up to work as the best version of yourself requires a lot of self-care and maintenance that is often overlooked by new business owners. When burnout hits, it hits hard. Setting boundaries and taking reasonable time off ensures your head and heart are still in the game.
2. Over-comparison — Everyone’s early business journeys are different. People tend to talk about themselves and their ‘wins’ while overlooking the struggles and non-linear aspects of business growth. Too much comparison of success can harm your morale.
3. The Legal Aspect — A good idea or product doesn’t mean you can start raking in the profit. Ensuring your business is properly registered with the municipality, state, or country you are in should be one of the first things on your agenda. Consider things like insurance, lawyers, and accountants to handle your taxes. One misstep in the eyes of the law can be the end of your venture.
4. Ignoring the Gig Economy — Nowadays, business start-ups can offload things like branding, IT, or marketing to freelancers. This ensures that you are paying as you go and don’t overspend on full-time positions you can quite afford at the moment.
5. Overambition — It’s great to have future plans and endeavors, and we’re all guilty of daydreaming about our venture becoming a Fortune 500 company. Losing focus and attempting to do too much with your startup can squash productivity on the things that matter most. Concentrate on your streams of revenue and what you do well before working towards further ambitions.

Leaders Perception magaizne would like to thank Will Ward for the time dedicated to completing this interview and sharing their valuable insights with our readers!

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