The word “entrepreneur” conjures up different images for different people; bold, clever, gutsy, reckless. To the entrepreneurial spirit, a life spent in the 9 to 5 may as well be a life spent in shackles.
Entrepreneurs want, need to experience all the highs that life has to offer, and aren’t afraid to plow their way through the down times to get to them. Tell the entrepreneur that 9 out of 10 businesses fail, and they will get to work building ten businesses – just to revel in that one success; to them, a failure is nothing more than a learning experience.
Building a successful business is about taking a chance. The trick is to know the difference between taking a chance and pure recklessness. The same gutsy attitude that carries many entrepreneurs to the top can also bring them crashing down if enthusiasm isn’t tempered with a little wisdom along the way.
Many of life’s harder lessons can be avoided if you take the time to learn from the failure of others. Get your idea off to a flying start by staying away from these six deadly sins many fledgeling entrepreneurs make before they learn to fly.
- Have a Great Product Without a Market Strategy: Just because you have an idea for a great product does not mean customers are going to be knocking down your doors to get to it. They need to hear about it first. From the very first germ of an idea, start work on fine-tuning the details of your marketing and distribution strategy. Only when you have all the pieces in place should you launch your business.
- Trusting in Yourself Too Much: Sure, self-confidence can carry you a long way, but no one person can take care of all the necessary details of the modern small business. Know your weak spots, and then take steps to shore them up by surrounding yourself with those who specialize in those areas.
- Don’t Lose Focus: One bright idea often leads to another before the first even gets off the ground. While the enthusiasm is running high, you feel invincible and think you can keep everything up in the air. Most end up losing focus, however, and everything soon comes crashing down. Give 100% attention to your current objective. Taking on more will only extend you to a breaking point, and something will eventually have to give.
- . Moderate Your Passion: Passion is the driving force behind many businesses, but lots of success happens outside the realms of our passion.The point we’re trying to make is there is no sense in blindly pursuing your passion when you could be seeing more success in some other rapidly growing trend or industry.
- Stay Professional: Many new entrepreneurs want to be friends with everybody, it’s only natural, they’re still human after all. So, they make the mistake of forming bonds with employees and clients and start hanging out at clubs, and bars, and popping over for a barbecue. This behavior is an excellent way to make new friends, but it can also rapidly bring your business to a grinding halt. Keep it professional, and be the business person they can look up to, rather than just another buddy with which to hang out.
- Don’t Avoid Confrontation: Confrontations are unpleasant, but sometimes they are a necessary component to getting things done. If you don’t deal with awkward situations today, they could come back to destroy your business tomorrow.