New Entrepreneurs Will Regret 8 Things: Here’s How To Avoid Them
A lot of people are already calling 2016 the year of the entrepreneur in Nigeria and Africa as a whole. With the job cuts, fewer job openings, and rising inflation, many individuals are already bidding on what businesses to invest in or start. While there are those who want to start a business because of the unfortunate economic situation, there’re also others who are excited to start a business because it’s inborn and have finally gotten either the capital, skill, or team they need to launch. With a rush of worry and excitement, comes a lot of mistakes. These mistakes would cost a lot of new entrepreneurs gravely this 2016. Many will not be able to recover from it, but a few would.
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Here are 8 costly mistakes new entrepreneurs will make in 2016 and how to overcome them:
1). Focusing More On The Product Than The Customer:
You’ve built a fantastic website or setup a beautiful store, you make adjustments here and there, and you’re perfectly happy. Now you wait for people to buy your products or services, and realize the sales are not coming in as you imagined. You start to question your judgements, then discouragement and fear sets in.
This is the first problem entrepreneurs always face. You think you know what the customer wants, so you burn through a lot of money to bring that perfect image in your mind to reality, only to realize only a few people care about what you have to offer. What you’ve just lost is precious time and money!
Before you spend a dime, first find out what people truly want. Then start your business with that. As it progresses and grows, you’d understand the customer even better and readjust more to their needs. If you start with pure assumptions, you might sink your business before it even takes off.
2). Being ahead of yourself:
It’s exciting to make a lot of money fast, buy merchandise fast, hire many employees fast, and move on to larger office/business spaces fast. While progress is a good thing, moving too fast would expose you to pitfalls.
You shouldn’t aggressively push for an explosive growth in a short period because, it would dis-stabilize your business and eventually create a trail of angry customers.
Move when it’s more than right to move, don’t hire an extra hand until you’re certain the available hands might break, and don’t expand to unnecessary categories until you’re very sure you’ve found a sizeable market for that new category. If you do things slowly and right, you’d succeed.
Stick to the plan!
3). Not having a mentor early:
Mentors exist for a reason; to ensure you make weigh lesser mistakes than you naturally would have on your own. Everyone needs a mentor. Even mentors need mentors.
When you’re starting out a business for the first time, find someone successful in that business line or a similar venture, and persuade he/she to lead you. With the right network of people giving you solid advice, you’d survive your first year and eventually succeed.
4). Trying too hard to play it safe:
Entrepreneurship is not for weak minds. If you cannot take real risks, you’d never get to where you want to in time, if at all. Taking risks involve trying new things in your business to see the outcome. As you experiment and break grounds, you’d eventually hit a niche no one ever saw and you’d scale faster. If you will succeed, you must take risks.
5). Disrespecting your employees:
If you do not treat your employees right, they’d feel uncomfortable for a long time and eventually leave. People appreciate when they’re treated with respect. Even better, when they’re treated like family.
If you’ll get the best out of your employees, make them feel they’re a part of your business and they’d do anything to see it succeed. If you play the employee card wrong, you’d lose even your best employees, and when that happens, your business might be going down the drain.
6). Not asking for feedback:
Feedback is very important, especially for any business that’s just starting out. The comments from employees and customers about where you’re doing fine and where you’re going wrong would help you know what areas of your business needs improvement.
Feedbacks will help you ensure you reduce all possible ways of making your customers feel uncomfortable with your business. Having them review your business also makes them know you care about them, builds their trust, and slowly converts them into your brand loyalists.
7). Not been flexible with your business idea and goals:
When something isn’t working right, try something else, and keep trying till it’s perfect. If you’re not willing to bend the idea behind your business to something people truly want, then you have definitely set yourself up for failure.
Flexibility would keep your business in existence, and would ensure you’re putting the right products and services in front of your customers.
New entrepreneurs must hone flexibility to perfection; for this is one important factor for success.
8). Not having a life:
After the day’s work, it’s important you spend quality time with your family and friends. These short timeouts would help get your mind off mild worries, and refresh your thoughts for a new day of work.
Save your relationships before your business destroys them because, they are mostly irreparable afterwards.
Finally, to ensure you don’t suffer what many new and existing businesses will suffer this 2016, ensure you correct every flaw you have on this list. When new entrepreneurs adhere to the core tenets of entrepreneurship, they surmount unseen hurdles and are placed on the path to success.
What are your thoughts on these 8 things new entrepreneurs will regret? Let me know by leaving a comment below.
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