The statistics on the longevity of small businesses may not be too comforting.
According to the most recent stats, around 50% of all businesses pass the five-year mark, while only about 30% survive ten years.
Laying a strong foundation for your business during its formative years affects its future growth. Mistakes made in the early stages of a startup can lead to numerous problems later on.
So, let’s see how to avoid them.
1. Not Having a Well-Though-Out Business Plan
Lack of thoughtful planning can come bouncing back on your business execution.
Having a well-developed and realistic business plan helps you to stay on the right track.
A business plan is a roadmap essential for structuring, running, and growing your business. This is where your accountant can help.
As the process of coming up with a plan requires thorough research, you’ll be able to learn a lot of important information about your industry and the competitive marketplace, all of which will of crucial importance for polishing your decision-making skills.
Besides, a detailed and well-structured plan will help you obtain funding and attract investors.
2. Bearing the Burden All by Yourself
One of the most common mistakes small business owners can avoid is trying to do everything by themselves.
Being a jack of all trades only leads to burnout and frustration.
Instead of wearing yourself out, make sure to prioritize your workload. Outsource the tasks that can be done by someone else, as that will allow you to focus on high-value activities that bring profit and unleash business growth.
Although it may not be easy to trust others or accept help, it’s much more effective to delegate the tasks that aren’t in your area of expertise or are not valuable of your time. This way you can free up your schedule and boost your productivity.
3. Not Fully Committing to Your Business
Many people with exciting business ideas, promising products or services, don’t think the business execution through and are not ready for the long hours, hard work, risk-taking and the burden of turning their dreams into reality.
Committing yourself to your business entirely is the key to success.
Every entrepreneur should nurture this drive and dedication as these success-oriented traits make all the difference in the business world.
4. Fear of Failure
It would be unusual not to feel fear, uncertainty or anxiety when starting a new business.
It is only natural to feel nervous when you’re getting out of your comfort zone.
But if you aspire to be a successful entrepreneur, you have to grit your teeth, muster up the courage, and take calculated risks as that’s what being an entrepreneur is all about.
Treat failure as a part of this challenging business journey.
5. Underestimating the Role of Marketing
If you see marketing as an expense your business can do without, you may face some bumps in the road very soon.
Ignoring the potential that a well-thought-out marketing plan can bring to the business can be detrimental in the long run.
Namely, you can’t rely solely on the quality of your product or service if you want your business to grow – it’s essential to spread the word and tell people about your new company.
6. Lack of Mission & Vission Statements
A mission statement expresses the company’s purpose.
It comes down to what are you trying to do, as well as how and why are you doing it.
Having a mission statement communicates to others what your enterprise is all about and what it does.
This statement reflects your business’ and your target audience’s core values.
A vision statement is the basis of business planning.
It describes what you want for your company in the immediate future as well as in the long run.
The lack of vision statement comes down to the old saying – “If you don’t know where you are going, how will you know when you get there?“
7. Giving Up Too Early
Entrepreneurs are often seduced by the idea of overnight success.
But what we do not see are the years of struggle, sacrifice, and hard work behind what seems like an instant success.
The final breakthrough and achievements can be depicted as the tip of the iceberg.
Beneath it lies persistence, failure, discipline, risk-taking, rejections, and courage.
If you dream big and expect to succeed in no-time you have failed before you even begin. In order to make your ideas come to life, you have to take all the necessary steps.
Unfortunately, there is no shortcut to success.
Avoiding mistakes listed above doesn’t guarantee that you’ll make it, but it can surely help with key aspects that can impact your business in the long run. Making your business successful is more than having a great idea. It takes courage, passion, commitment, and life-long learning.