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Startup do’s and don’ts from those that have been there, done that and got the T-shirt.

Just do it. That’s the overriding advice you’ll hear from all the Chivas Venture finalists 2016. If you’re passionate about your idea, sitting on it is the worst thing you can do.

You need to be brave, committed and have a bulletproof plan to get your initiative rolling. You should be open with your idea, talk about it, seek opinions, listen to feedback.

And, remember, although it will take sacrifices, the rewards – for both you and society generally – will make it all worthwhile.

Here the brave, committed and passionate minds behind some of the world’s most interesting social enterprises reveal their best advice for starting your startup.

Charles Blaschke, co-founder of Taka Solutions
Take a really hard look at yourself and be honest. Do you really want to take the risk, make sacrifices and give up all that you know and love to start your company? And ask yourself, are you solving a real problem?

Then make a really detailed plan, not just for the business and finances, but for yourself too. What are your goals? When would you cut your losses and move on? What is your support structure to launch, run and grow the company so you don’t have to shoulder all the burden?

Kenny Ewan, founder and CEO of WeFarm
Take the leap. Like most things the hardest part is getting started, especially if you have a job and commitments. Few people regret it (most days). I’d also recommend sharing your idea with as many people as possible. Many startups are initially afraid of talking to people about their idea in case people don’t like it, or steal it. In reality it’s hard enough to get people to listen to your idea, let alone steal it. Finding people who can support you or introduce you to other relevant people is vital in the early days. Talk to anyone who will listen.

Jaco Gerrits, CEO of CrashDetech
Starting a business requires hard work and you can expect numerous challenges along the way. There are external challenges such as funding, talent acquisition and technology. More importantly, there are internal challenges such as stress, fear and self-doubt. You have to overcome mental hurdles in order to start a business and make it a success. You’re guaranteed to experience setbacks and failures along the startup journey. Adopting a positive mindset in order to learn from and constructively deal with these setbacks is a key ingredient for success.

John Lewandowski, CEO of Disease Diagnostic Group

My main advice is to take risk, be perseverant and believe that with your own talent and capacities you can transform the world and provide welfare and happiness to thousands of people.

Or Retzkin, CEO of EyeControl
Believe in yourself, in the product and in your mission. And don’t forget it is a ride – there are always ups and downs.

Onicio Leal, co-founder and CEO of Epitrack

It isn’t easy. It isn’t glamorous. And it takes a long time to earn money. But if your heart and brain love to solve relevant issues for society then it can be very rewarding.

Felisberto Caramba, co-founder of Habitec

You have the power of creation and to do better for the world. The first step is to try. Keep trying. And do not give up.

Shutong Liu, CEO of MotionECO
Don’t be overly influenced by others. Don’t begin a startup just because other people are doing it, but because it’s your goal.

Maria Pacheco, co-founder of Wakami
Do it if it comes from the heart. Stick to it, but listen, learn and question yourself. Be persistent and enjoy the ride. It has to make you happy!

Somsak Boonkam, founder and CEO of Local Alike
Start with passion and channel it into your work as soon as possible.

Edison Santos, founder and CEO of ECO Mensajería
Do it. Start right there, with what you have, no excuses. It takes sacrifice, hard work, purpose and passion. Keep a positive attitude because even if things don’t go as you planned, you can transform your experience from failure into learned lessons, problems into opportunities. But nothing will happen if you don’t even try.

The real question is, what are you waiting for?

Follow @ChivasVenture on Twitter for all the highlights from the competition, and the latest stories, ideas and individuals that are helping to shape our future.

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