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Four Deadly Mistakes to Avoid as an Entrepreneur

Provided by Mona Shibel, Content Partner for SME Toolkit



Global statistics tells us that one in five businesses survive past 5 years. Let’s face it;  running a business is not easy especially for today’s entrepreneur. Mistakes will happen, but they can be detrimental for a starting business, and that’s why an entrepreneur should be aware of the potential mistakes well in advance. Here are four common yet deadly mistakes to avoid as a new business owner.


1-     Paralysis resulting from seeking perfection

Many business owners hold back on taking action as they wait for some aspect of their business to be perfect. They do not start marketing until their website is fully developed. They delay working with clients until they have full clarity on their business vision. They avoid advertising until they define their target market.

Despite the fact that all of these points are valid endeavors, perfection is not required to move ahead. Take action instead. You will continue to tweak, enhance and change things in your business as it continues to grow and evolve with the market.

Don’t get delayed in seeking perfection because time is money and when you are running your own business, you cannot afford to waste time. Take action.


2-     Overspending your startup cash

Cash is king, even more so in the startup phase of the business. Thus, until you start to see some sales coming in at an early stage, you should avoid spending too much on your business. This is especially the case when you are starting as a “solopreneur”, since you can do your branding and marketing very cheaply or for free.

As a “solopreneur”, you and your service together are the brand. Just make sure that your marketing message is clear. Marketing your business is simply marketing yourself. Even online marketing can be done with a minimum cost by creating and hosting a great website using Wordpress or other similar low-cost to no-cost platforms.

Be frugal until you test the business and gauge the response. Start generating income,see measuring the results and only then work on upgrading all your business efforts.


3-     Not marketing constantly

It pays to remain constantly in the minds of your customers. That’s why marketing should be a top priority at all times whether or not you have clients today. Otherwise your business is more likely to suffer from inconsistent income as customers ebb and flow.

The main reason for this inconsistency is that as business owners are busy with existing clients, they forget about marketing. They remember to market again as customer numbers decrease, and cash flow trickles.

Marketing should never be a one-off exercise but rather a continuous part of the business operation.

It is this marketing that maintains your connection with the customers when they are ready to buy again. This way your business maintains a steady stream of income and healthy cash flow.


4-     Trying to do everything

As a “solopreneur”, it’s likely that you are wearing all the hats in the business; meaning you are doing everything yourself such as networking, developing the business, delivering the service, meeting with clients, answering emails, bookkeeping, and all the other administrative work. The problem with this picture is that the majority of these  time-consuming tasks do not directly contribute to income. In fact, it takes away from your income because you are not selling to clients.

There are certain essential tasks that you need to do, but other time-consuming tasks that you can delegate to others. For instance no one should be marketing your business but you because you remain the brand of your business. However, you can certainly outsource the non-income generating tasks, such as the accounting, answering emails and any other administrative work. All this will gain you some valuable time to focus on what really matters for your business to survive: Sales! 

Copyright © 2016 Mona Shibel. All rights reserved.

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