It has been a tough period for one of my new business. l have been paying out more than l receive from all my efforts. I started this venture 10 months ago and this month l was ready to pack up. I told myself, “I have had enough” and that record was what kept playing in my head – “sunk enough money, enough time, and enough energy! Just drop it!”
After advising all people concerned about my decision to throw in the towel, including my spouse – l started reflecting and realised l am the one to blame. Yes, me! I just made so many common mistakes in trying to run this new business. Very basic mistakes that I will share with you which need to be addressed by everyone who is feeling like giving up on a profitable venture. I am telling myself, “Failure is not an option, nor is giving up after only 10 months!”
As an entrepreneur, failure should bring about change for the better, never allow failure to sink you to the bottom of the sea. Take a step back, learn and go forward. Be reasonable and use your business case plus a dash of gut feel and you are likely to know what will eventually become successful.
These are the mistakes I made and what I know I should do about each mistake.
1. I had so much fear of losing business – don’t be driven by it. Keep away from clients you know will not afford your services. They are normally people you know, but they tell you the same lie, I will pay later! Seriously? Do not fear losing clients, serve better those who know your value.
2. I was a talented practitioner, but not a business owner – I behaved like many people who are skilled and talented and then branch out to start a business. An example I have seen is a hairdresser I used before. They knew exactly how to do the job, had many clients working for someone but when they branched out, they became seriously poor. The reason was that they did not understand how to actually run a business. I fell in exactly the same trap in this 10 months stint of mine. I just wanted to do the ‘work’, and forgot about issues of running a business:- managing finance & accounting, marketing aspects, etc. Yes as a start up you need to be everything for a season, there is need to balance between what you do best and what actually needs attention in your business.
3. I had a plan, but never bothered to follow it. Oh my, I have warned so many people about filing plans myself as a strategy guru. I would get home, promise to action the plan and before I knew it, was doing other things not part of the plan. Stick to your plan, it is likely to help you move forward that doing that which may not add so much value to your desired outcome.
Now that I am a little wiser, am asking you to truthfully reflect on your latest business venture and see where you can take corrective action. The world is full of great opportunities and am sure you know why you started your venture. Think again before you give up.
To your success, Mel
You have potential to succeed!