Today is special for us in Ontario and we officially exit lockdown. Phew! I hope you’re out enjoying the summer but remembering to stay safe.
I’ll be sharing with you some things I wish I knew before starting a business. Trust me when I say this will spare you some of the challenges of an entrepreneur.
If you’re like many new entrepreneurs, you’re probably fired up about your business idea and eager to launch your company into the world, it’s your dream, your baby and you can’t wait for the reveal.
Hold on! I strongly recommend stepping back and making sure you avoid some common mistakes that plague many new businesses. Making the right moves, in the beginning, can help you avoid major headaches later on.
Any one of the following mistakes could sabotage your new business venture and turn it into a failure rather than a success.
Not Having a Business Plan
Did I hear you scream, “that is so old school” Spending endless hours creating a document that will likely change, is indeed pointless. What I’m talking about is taking the time to chart a high level plan that will help keep your efforts consistent, serve as a rallying point for your team and give milestones to measure your progress. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Don’t overdo it though.
Here’s a quick sample you can follow
Ignoring the importance of Market Research
Test your products and services first before you start a business. If you don’t, you have no idea if people are even going to want to buy them. Being able to identify your ideal client; where they are, what they do, their pain points, the goals in life, etc makes it easier to create products they desire. Why wait till launch day to find out the only person interested in your product is you? Or maybe your spouse and close friends who are too afraid to tell you the truth.
Make sure you have a market for your product. Capiche
Refusing external support
Many new entrepreneurs are reluctant to admit they need help. Don’t be shy about seeking a mentor, hiring an outside consultant or creating an advisory board to give you support and ideas. Now is not the time to be superhuman. Yes, you’re awesome and you can do all things but that will only burn you out. Focus on the things you enjoy doing in your business and outsource the rest.
You can’t be everything in your business.
Not Investing in Marketing
“But my product is so good it should sell itself” Newsflash: The most sold products are not the BEST products. Far too many small businesses are reluctant to spend any money on marketing, let alone a significant amount.
Free marketing can be excellent – but most free marketing strategies take a significant amount of time before they become effective. You want to be mindful of your expense in the early days but you also want to build momentum quickly.
Figure out the best marketing strategy and invest some dollars, measuring continuously, so you get the most bang for your buck.
Failing to Learn
Most successful businesses failed many times before they were successful. As you start your business, learn from your initial mistakes, better still learn from other people’s mistakes, and use them to guide your eventual success. Failing is not the real problem, it’s what you did when you failed. Always remember the many winning entrepreneurs,who didn’t succeed the first time, they didn’t quit or beat themselves up. No, they figured out what went wrong and tried something different. Failure is a learning opportunity and not the end.
I’m a huge fan of Tony Robbins and this book was pivotal when I started on my own journey. Click below to buy
Understand that starting a business is a process, not a sprint, it’s a marathon. It takes courage, grit and determination to succeed. You are on this journey because you believe you were born to do this, so go ahead and do it. Put in the work, learn from others, pivot when things don’t go well. Whatever you do, don’t forget your WHY. The journey might be tough but the reward is PRICELESS.
I want to support you to succeed. Click on the link below to join.