The importance of learning to assume (in projects and when creating a business)


This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors may exist due to this process.

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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What to do when the knowledge necessary to take the first step in our endeavor exceeds our budget?

I recently read an article here on Entrepreneur that talked about how assuming can cause us a lot of problems in our personal lives; and the truth is that it is an important reflection.

But I have always believed that it is important to approach things from multiple points of view; so here I will explain why you should learn to assume (and how you should do it) .

Assuming is not always bad

The first thing you must accept is that the meaning of assuming is not negative per se ; rather, assuming is a skill that can be developed like any other.

The project is used very often when estimating costs and durations, mainly in the early stages; later we will see it with an example.

And it is that assuming is a very good complement to other activities such as estimating or improvising.

I once read that to be very good at planning you had to be exceptional at improvising.

Solopreneur, does that ring a bell?

We live in the years of the entrepreneurial and solopreneur revolution; and if you are one of the last, you can get a better idea of what I am about to explain.

In a consultancy that I did to an enterprise, the owner of the project told me; “By the way, I am an owner, manager, photographer, model, marketing director, sales manager, developer and product tester, among others.”

The next thing he said to me was “I need this to work, and the initial investment to be low, what is the next step?”

My answer was: we assume, we assume like crazy and as if there is no tomorrow.

I then explained to him that we were going to carry out the project in about four or five iterations (or cycles) and in each one we would be polishing what was assumed in the previous iteration.

Now let’s see an example; To calculate the cost of making a product, combo coffee with a loaf for saying something.

How to estimate assuming (almost) everything

In our first iteration we did a quick estimate of the initial investment, the cost of the machines? assumed, the cost of rent? taken; The sales estimate? assumed obviously.

This first iteration took one night, but it was important to put on paper what until then had been just a messy idea with no planning.

In one night we were able to estimate the cost of putting a cup of coffee and bread with cheese and hot ham on a table; It wasn’t an exact number, but it was a number.

In the following iterations there were quotes, inquiries, and of course some closed purchases; each one was being overwritten in our first estimate, approaching the real cost.

The result? Our estimate (with almost everything assumed) and the final budget were not very distant numbers.

The secret of assuming correctly

After reading the previous section, you must be thinking that we must have done something particularly well so that our assumed result and the actual one have not been very different.

And you’re right, here’s the secret: experience .

Assuming is only functional when done with foundation.

My client has been working in the cafeteria for years and was therefore able to make fairly accurate estimates.

And we were both clear that you can’t be an expert in everything, so we had to make several calls.

So there you go the secret of the secret: networking .

Assuming with precision requires knowledge that you will not always have at hand, and that is when you will need help; It is not wrong to admit that you do not know everything.

Let’s take a reflection

In closing, let us understand that assuming constructively requires experience and sanity; projecting utopian scenarios is nice but rarely profitable.

At the beginning of your project, you will have to assume durations, assume costs, assume potential risks, assume that your idea is profitable or not and work accordingly.

Although assuming is not what will lead your project to success, it can represent that starting gun that is so important.



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