Starting your own business is the most exciting decision to make. Your mind is likely overwhelmed with all the things you need to consider and all the success you hope to have.
The path towards entrepreneurial success is marred with obstacles though, and sometimes you can feel very alone.
In the start-up phase you’ll find yourself working 20 hour days and sacrificing many a personal commitment in order to just keep on working. You see, the end result can be so worth it.
Managing to lift a business off the ground single-handedly is an incredible feat. Having the entity turn into a burgeoning business growing from strength to strength is the next level of success. And in order to achieve this you can be certain you will mess up along the way.
You’re bound to face obstacles and sometimes how you choose to overcome them will be wrong. At best you’ll have egg on your face, at worst you’ll call failure and give up. But most entrepreneurs make mistakes and land themselves in precarious situations that they have to navigate out of.
The fallout is often in the loss of money or investors and sometimes reputations come undone. But most times, entrepreneurs are small fry enough to make some mistakes and get up, dust off and try again.
But there are some business misdemeanours that can land you in such hot water you may struggle to recover. Usually these mistakes are born out of the business owner’s actual ignorance or misunderstanding of what is needed for success.
Often times these mistakes have to do with the foundation needed to ensure a business keeps standing, even through turbulence.
These are mistakes you should steer clear of and it can be difficult to know about these heinous business blunders unless you educate yourself beforehand.
The onus is on the entrepreneur to learn about how to start a business the right way. Reading business blogs and books is a good way to find out what the possible entrepreneurial pitfalls are.
Here are three of the biggest mistakes new business owners make.
1They remain a lone ranger
You’re about to become more self-absorbed than you have ever been. Because starting your own business will overwhelm you and it will be all you ever think of.
Your new business will take priority over everything else and while that might be necessary for it to launch, it cannot be how you continue. And yet, many entrepreneurs end up remaining a one-man-show for a long while after they’ve launched and sustained a successful business.
This is a surefire way of having your business stop growing or worse, fail altogether. You need to create a team who can handle various tasks and who you can delegate to. This will free up your time to focus on new business development, which is how you grow.
If you spend your days bogged down by admin tasks, you’re going to lose out on networking opportunities that push growth.
As a new business owner you should be aware of when you’re going to make you first hire and ensure you’re mentally prepared for this change.
2Being money conscious to the point of stupidity
You need things when you start a business. You need to spend some money. Even if you’re going the bootstrapped route and you’re only willing to spend once there’s some money in the bank, once the cash is there you should invest in some business things you need.
For instance, not having business insurance leaves you open to risk. At worst, it leaves you open to risk that you cannot afford and will leave you financially sinking. Business insurance is important and the minute you have employees it becomes even more crucial to cover yourself.
Consider if someone happens to hurt themselves on your premises, you need insurance to cover the costs involved in sorting that issue out. What’s more, you should consider investing in business process automation products.
A fine example is accounting software. Doing your books every month might be manageable in the beginning but soon it will become an administrative task you might find less and less time to do. Also, automating administrative processes in your daily operation frees up your time to focus on developing and growing your business.
3Delaying the hiring process and choosing wrong
You need to be able to recognise when it’s necessary to employ staff. For most entrepreneurs, this is a big and scary step. After all, who will love and nurture your business like you do? Well, actually there are many people out there who enjoy the start-up scene and get a kick out of working for a business that’s still a fledgling.
You can start small but by not hiring anyone you are only increasing your workload and your already growing stress levels. Finding the right staff to hire can also be difficult. The recruitment process is a long one and you will find that it may take months before you settle on a candidate you can see yourself working with on the daily.
You should also know where to look. You’ll be surprised at the amount of opportunity seekers you’ll find at networking events, corporate launches and the like. You should attend events with like-minded individuals.
The chances of there being a person who knows someone, who’ll be interested in either buying your product or working for your company, are great.
These three faux pas can end your business if you’re not aware of them and you don’t include them in your plan. Be wary of becoming too involved in your daily grind to notice when you need to up your game.
Some entrepreneurs are so caught up in managing their business day-to-day that they don’t give enough time to realising how much they’ve grown and how much they need in order to continue on a positive trajectory.