Most entrepreneurs take part in the ‘biz race’ for a marathon run but perish as sprinters
Running a business is no easy cookie. You need to be ultra-active, understand the shift of the market and react quickly to stand any chance of survival. We know that as many as 90% of all startups eventually fall. The rate of descent differs from one business to the other but the slips and stumbles can be spotted quite early. The purpose of this blog is to help a budding entrepreneur take control of his/her business. Often it’s the early stages of the business that can make or break the game, so it’s crucial to stay alert in this phase and safeguard against making silly errors that can prove costly later on. Following are the 10 mistakes that every entrepreneur must avoid in the first year of their Technology business.
1. Trying To Be One Man Army
You think you’re the best person to do every job and get your hands full with all sorts of work. The end result? Nothing gets done. As an entrepreneur, you need to have great interpersonal skills to communicate your ideas and delegate your authority. It’s really asking too much of yourself to do everything just because you feel you’re the most passionate person about your work. Early in their careers, many entrepreneurs have fallen victim to this malady. The solution- create a team and build a harmonious culture where everyone feels valued for the work they do. That’s the best way to bring the most out of everybody.
2. Starting Without Basics
Some entrepreneurs are lucky enough to start early but that doesn’t always mean they have a headstart in their business. Starting early is no use if you don’t know the basics of running a business and managing plethora of stuff going on around you. With advances in technology and ever more learning material available there really can’t be an excuse for not knowing a given skill that’s crucial to your work. You can take the big entrepreneurial leap when you’ve got your basics right.
3. Letting Pessimism Affect You
No business is without challenges. These challenges have a way of either getting the best or the worst out of your team. No doubt, it’s the latter effect that you need to guard yourself against. People who’re doubtful and negative will always question your beliefs and say things that can bring your morale down. When you’re surrounded by pessimism, it can be challenging to rise up and take a stand. But it’s moments like these that can be defining for your business. You can decide the people who’re the best fit to work with you and take the business forward. A caveat – your decision should be based on reason and not caprice.
4. Disproportionate Hiring And Firing
When you start your business, it’s understandable to have fewer people with more responsibilities, as they’re your closest partners or helping hands. But, as the business begins to buck, new roles and requirements add up. That’s when you need to expand your team with the most fitting personnel. A recurring trend in failed businesses is that they don’t hire the needed staff and are quick to fire the people most crucial to the business. It just shows the lack of managerial soundness and can prove catastrophic for any business very quickly.
5. Thinking Money Instead Of Nurturing Relationships
Money is power and it can play many tricks with our mind. Budding entrepreneurs associate the inflow of cash with success and as we know money has an addictive attribute to it, it can easily make a person irrational. What happens with young entrepreneurs in the early stages is they’re restless. They want to hit the jackpot without doing the necessary groundwork. This ‘quick-money’ disposition can lead them to belittle client relations that are central to the growth of the business. Each project should be seen as a stepping stone and relations should be nurtured to ensure a sustained expansion of business.
6. My Product Is Too Good To Turn Down
This is a bit of a misconception that many entrepreneurs fall prey to. They see their product in the best light possible and delude themselves into believing that it will sell itself. First thing first, a product or service can only be profitable if there’s demand for it. Creating something spectacular for which there’s no demand in the market is a waste of effort. Many entrepreneurs learn the bitter truth of this mistake after kick-starting their business and when no one turns up to have a peep into their services. If what you’re offering is indeed very good, you may consider trumping up the volume a little bit by running a powerful marketing campaign that tries to emotionally connect with the general public and then educates them on its various benefits. That way you have a better chance of getting close to your end users.
7. Scaling Before Time
Scaling should always be in an entrepreneurs thoughts but more crucially he/she must know when is the right time to go for it. Often early in your business, you want to focus and dedicate as much of your attention to your core operations. If things really take a turn for the better after a promising start then you can make preparations to go big. However, if your core operations are still maturing and you can’t afford to devote much time to additional things, it’s best to hang around for awhile. Scaling too early, which is always a temptation, can stress you out and lead your business into a complicated mess.
8. Letting Pride Get In The Way
Leave your pride out of the door before you enter your place of work. Pride has no place in business really. Entrepreneurship is all about keeping a calm, steady and open mind to everything going on around you. Neither should you shut yourself from criticism nor stay aloof thinking you’ve got the mojo to make anything work. Business world is as real as reality gets. Never let your pride get in the way of making profitable deals for your business.
9. Social Media: Play It Safely
Social Media is a powerful tool that puts you on the global stage and where messages can spread like wildfire within minutes. Businesses have a vested interested in Social Media given its instrumental impact on their growth. But, despite giving you the much-vaunted limelight, it can also prove disastrous if one or the other messages of your biz were interpreted or received negatively. There’s no doubt in Social Media’s potential to give increased coverage to your business but it must be used very carefully and with detail to attention.
10. Worrying Too Much About The Competition
It’s hardly a secret that competition for virtually any place/position of gain is fiercely competed nowadays; businesses more than any other. Competition is real no doubt, but there’s no need to mull over it. What it does, especially when you’ve just started your entrepreneur-journey, is it makes you think lowly of your own merits. You always think you have a long way to go and catch up with your competition and no time is enough to make that happen. In that kind of restlessness, it’s hard to call out your individual creative skills. Entrepreneurs are also human-beings and just like everyone else they need a breather. Take a look at your competition but, instead of worrying yourself with its magnitude, focus on where do you fit in and how you can make yourself stand from the crowd.
So those were the 10 mistakes that an entrepreneur must avoid in the 1st year of their tech or any business for that matter. Surmounting these challenges will ensure you’ve passed your initial test as an entrepreneur and are all set to step up to the next level. Hope you enjoyed reading the blog. Let me know if I’ve missed out any other crucial mistakes that entrepreneurs are prone to making in the comments section below.