Common mistakes that are made, how to avoid them, and how to get better.
PITFALL #1 UN-FOCUSED
One of the biggest pitfalls I see when people get inspired to start their own business is a condition called 'scatter-brained'.
They are all over the place. Disorganized. In a frenzy. Wanting to do 101 things at a time.
Ladies/Gents, it is super exciting when you are willing to take that first step to become an entrepreneur and go for it. Congratulations, I applaud you! 😄
But now... it's time to get intensely focused. There will be 101 things that you'll wanna do or buy right away (and you'll try to convince yourself that you need it), but I want you to stay strong and stay LEAN.
If you're having trouble staying focused, refer back to your Business Plan. Often times, you may feel like you are venturing off too far from your original business idea. Get back to the basics and the reason why you started your business in the first place. It's easy to get off track or get inspired by someone else's business and try to do something way off the cuff. Focus on income-producing activities (i.e. Sales). We can't afford to lose time and money on useless tasks! Stay on course and you will get to the finish line.
PITFALL #2 Spending Money on the Wrong Things
There's only a few things you need to start your business:
- Business Plan
- Business License
- Product/Service to sell
- Phone Number & Email Address
- Business Card
However, I find that many people who are just getting started have a long list of things that they have to have in order to jumpstart their business. 90% of the time, that long list is filled with money wasters. At the end of the day you have to ask yourself, will this actually help me produce income? Will this help me reach my goal?
If the answer is yes, then go ahead and proceed (or, make plans to proceed in the near future.)
If the answer is no (and be honest), then it needs to wait.
There will be all kinds of things like sophisticated CRMs, fancy laptops/tablets, events, associations, certifications, etc. that will want you to spend your money on and your time. It will be presented to you in the most beautiful packaging with a red bow and you will feel like "I gotta have it right now".
I want to caution you.
As a startup/new entrepreneur, the #1 thing you need to be doing is growing your business. Stay focused at the task at hand. I'm not opposed to my clients wanting to have a reason to attend a $10,000 seminar to see Tony Robbins or purchase the MacBook pro - these are great opportunities and assets that will help you get to where you want to be and frankly, you'll get those feel-good hormones once you've made the purchase. However, at the end of the day, you have to ask yourself - do I absolutely need this right now? Can this wait? Is this a want? Is this a luxury, a nice-to-have? Can I keep using my 5-year-old Dell PC and wait until more sales come in to purchase that dreamy, sleek MacBook Pro? My guess is that you already know the answer. We always know what to do, we just try to find a reason or excuse to not do the right thing.
If you have discretionary income or savings and have the money to blow, go for it.
However, my guess is, like most entrepreneurs starting out, you may not have a huge inventory of cash lying around. Therefore, it's critical you spend that money (and your time) wisely.
PITFALL #3 Not taking enough ACTION
Ladies/Gents, this is the REAL reason why people become successful = taking action. You gotta take massive action. What does that mean? Go out there and just do it. Pick up the phone, run some Google Ads, spread the word to family and friends, go door-knocking. Whatever it takes. It's time to put in that sweat equity into your business and keep grinding. We can't expect our product to just sell itself and the customers will come flying in. Trust me, that never works.
Chances are you already know what you need to be doing. You just don't want to do it, you don't feel like doing it, or you're afraid to it. That my friends will hold you back.
But you don't have to worry. Many successful people don't like "sales" or doing uncomfortable things...but do you know why they are successful? They do it anyway.
So what are you waiting for? Don't let a silly emotion called FEAR hold you back from seeing your success and prosperity. Remember, the only one holding you back....is you.