7) Going solo
No one is an island. The same rule applies in business. There are things that you can do on your own in the beginning. It may help that you cut costs and even improve your bottom line. As you lay down the foundations of your business however you must ensure that you are building the right structure upon it. This is created by the organization or people that you invite to join you in your vision. People are placed in your life for a reason. Identify those in your life who you can trust with your dreams and aspirations. Accept help from those you have in your life that you trust to help you achieve your dreams of successful entrepreneurship.
6) Making unrealistic goals
I’m definitely guilty of this one. Goal setting is a key skill for young entrepreneurs to master. If you’re like me, you’ll make grand, unrealistic goals at the spur of the moment. Sure we know you can do it. We all heard the phrase: “Nothing is impossible.” However, you can set yourself up for failure if you don’t master the skill of setting realistic, measurable goals. What I have found has worked for me is to draft long-term yearly and monthly goals and set your short-term weekly and daily goals based on those.
In creating your short-term goals, you might want to consider the Japanese practice of “kaizen” which means “continuous improvement”. Create miniature achievable goals on your way to the goal that measures an increase in the development of your business each time one is met.
5) Ignoring the power of marketing
Word of mouth is one of the most effective ways to get noticed. Your business is your baby and your clients will bring in sustenance in the form of sales. You want to get as many of them to believe in your product or service to keep your business growing. There are traditional forms of marketing like TV and print-ads. In this day and age however, you should engage in targeted online marketing through search engine optimization (SEO), social media and other online marketing options. Learn as much as you can through ebooks and audio books on marketing and sales in order to give your business the best chance of success.
4) Not listening to the market
Know your target market. Yes, you may definitely have a game changer on your hands but is it something that people will understand, need and use? Will they be able to appreciate your product or service for what it is made for? A new product, no matter how revolutionary, can fail if the market rejects it for whatever reason. The market always clarifies its demands. Take advantage of this and optimise your product and service to market demands instead of working against the market.
The customer is always right and the smart entrepreneur knows how to recognize and heed market needs. You always have the opportunity to introduce product upgrades along the way that would keep your brand relevant to your market.
3) Being too rigid
Believing in your business is one thing. Not knowing when to adjust is quite another. You might know your clientele in the beginning but this can and will change. Be open and willing to change your product and service to match your consumer demands. Make it a habit to listen to the market. Be ready to be flexible and adapt to changing tastes and preferences of your target market to stay relevant.
2) Not staying focused
While you want to adapt to consumer tastes and demands, you must remember to stay true to the heart of your product and service. Make sure there is always a standout quality of your product that will make it unique from other competitive products and services. Remember to always concentrate on why your customers come back to you in the first place and try not to deviate from this primordial reason. Build on it from there but not too much that your core business looses its identity.
1) Being unreliable
As a young entrepreneur remember you are trying to build a personal and business reputation. Nobody wants to do business with someone who cannot make good on their promises. The Latin maxim “quid pro quo” or “this for that” can be used as a basis for doing business. Your word is your bond. Deliver on your promises. Most succesful businesses are set on the foundation of trust between two parties. Never take this for granted. First impressions are key. Endeavor to make a great first impression for yourself and your business.
Share top mistakes you have avoided as a young entrepreneur!