Every business leader will have their own style, but there are a few small business mistakes that every entrepreneur should avoid. Most mistakes you’ll have to discover through trial and error, but here are a few that other leaders have faced so you won’t have to.
7 Costly Small Business Mistakes
- Dumping money on ads: Don’t go too overboard with ads or other marketing too early on. You want to make sure every dollar you spend is converting into customers. It’s fine to run some ads, but only buy promotions that you know will make a serious contribution. You can’t afford any fluff in your budget.
- Avoiding sales: Sometimes sales can be intimidating. You might be tempted to hang back and keep focusing on the product, but no business succeeds unless sales happen. You have to spend plenty of time with customers if you are hoping to make money and grow.
- Over-focusing on one growth area: It’s easy to get overly focused on a single method for growth, but the truth is that the world can be somewhat unpredictable, especially for a small organization. You must be ready to pivot to an alternative growth strategy if necessary.
- Getting too broad too early: While it’s a mistake to only have one path to growth, you also don’t want to try to boil the ocean. Try to focus on a narrow area where you can perform at the top of the industry. Remember, many large organizations started with just one or two successful products.
- Being a perfectionist: You need to get to market in time for customers to care. If you want until your product is prefect, you will be waiting forever. The world is littered with great products that came too late to matter. In most cases, good and done is better than late and perfect.
- Giving away information: When you are pitching to investors or anyone else, keep in mind that small companies’ most valuable assets are often information. Protect your technology, business plan and strategy details. When you take meetings, avoid sharing too much too early.
- Going without an attorney: Going into any major business transaction without a lawyer is a very foolish thing to do. It’s a great way to get sued or agree to poor terms. Lawyer up and protect your business from legal issues.
There will be hundreds of mistakes you make along the way to building a successful business. To a certain extent, failure is part of the process. However, if you can avoid these common errors, things will go much easier for your business in its early phases.