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Making My Idea into a Reality

July 11
by
Justine Avoudikpon
in
#HalfTheStory
with
.

One quote that I have really lived by throughout my entrepreneurship journey is “Luck is when opportunity meets preparation”.


To start off, I never imagined myself joining the “entrepreneurship world” my junior year of college. However, it happened because I was prepared when the opportunity presented itself. Being a successful entrepreneur takes a bit of luck, but if you are not mentally prepared to receive your luck when the moment presents itself, you will miss it!

I came up with my business idea while studying abroad in France. One weekend I took a trip to Barcelona, and while there, I met another American who happens to be a successful entrepreneur himself. Stepping out of my comfort zone, I decided to start conversing with him and told him about a business idea I had.

Rule #1 in being an entrepreneur, you MUST always step out of your comfort zone and talk to anyone who’s willing to listen!

After telling him my idea, he then asked me “ So, why are you not working to bring this idea to life”. Being a 20-year college student, I had a lot of reasons why I wasn’t starting a business, with the most being that I had NO IDEA how to start a business or had the money to do so. He gave me his email to contact him and that was the last time I saw him.

Rule #2 on being an entrepreneur, Take all of your shots! Which means, take all opportunity that’s comes your way, no matter how small! All I had was his email, but six months later, I now have a business on the way to raise funds and expand.  After getting his email, I was proactive and email him asking for advice on how to bring this idea to life. He then emailed me back with a four-step procedure on how to go about building my app. Now that I had the steps of building an app, the next important thing was investing the capital (AKA money) to actually start in the process.

Rule #3, if YOU don’t take the risk and believe in your idea enough to invest personal capital into it, no one else will. With this mindset, I took all of my saving that I was planning to use to backpack Europe and invested it into the development of my new app. However, before that I had to do some research of my own. Do people actually NEED you service or idea?  Rule #4 ask them! After a few months of research, I began the process of hiring a developer to code my app. It was hard draining all of my saving on this new “ Idea” I had that could fail. However, I believed in it enough to take the short term lost for a long-term benefit in the future.

Three months later, I had an app. Now what? The second semester of my junior year was the most challenging semester yet. Imagine getting up every day at 6 am and not getting back home till midnight and redoing that every weekday for the whole semester.

Between schoolwork, participating in an accelerator program, developing and marketing my app; I didn’t have time for a social life.

But, I was okay with that because I knew my future looked brighter. I would party once I reached my first million. While working all day on developing and marketing my idea, I would also spend nights after school applying to as much pitch competitions as I could. So many people want to be entrepreneurs because of the money, being your own boss, or the lavish lifestyle, BUT so little of them are willing to actually put in the work. During my semester, I participated in 3 pitch competitions and got second place in all 3.

Rule # 5 – second place is the #1 loser! However, that did not break my spirit because I knew that I was willing to hard to one day come in first place. Rule #6 – take feedback and keep moving. It is hard to deal with a losing or not getting investments after putting endless hours into your idea which sometimes means staying up until 6 am working on your pitch deck, but the most important thing to remember is that practice makes perfect. Yes, I am now out of thousands of dollars invested into my idea, but opportunities will present itself if you keep believing in yourself and your product. A few days after my competition, I received a message from a friend who saw my Facebook post about my new app on and was interested in helping me market the app to schools in California. On top of that, she also knows some angel investors are interested in investing in my app. A week after that, I received another email informing me that I was accepted into a another major pitch competition in Florida to present my idea in front of CEO’s of major companies. To think that I just lost 3 competitions in a row to now being offered all of these amazing opportunity was surprising.


Thus concluding my story by saying that on the road to becoming an successful entrepreneur, you must ready for your lucky moment by preparing yourself. Another quote that I now live my life by is that “ If you are 100% committed, you will not fail” Be 100% committed to your idea even if you don’t not win the 1st, or 3rd, or even 20th pitch competition or pitch to investors, if you believe in yourself 100% you will succeed.

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