Sunday, 19 June 2016

5 Common Mistakes Entrepreneurs Make

Its about four years since I last published on this blog.

When I started this blog in 2011, I set out to provide a mini-resource center for entrepreneurs. Somewhere they could come to from time to time for inspiration, knowledge and ideas.

Around the same time, I had started a few small business of my own. Although the blog was immensely successful at that time, my small businesses were not.

This is the story of many entrepreneurs. They start a business but unfortunately, they close shop in less than a year or so.

Having done a postmortem assessment of my own businesses, and having done a little research, I am persuaded to believe that the following are some of the most common reasons why we fail as entrepreneurs.

Thinking that passion is enough

Whether you have your eyes on a brick and mortar traditional business, or an online shop, passion alone will not make you successful.Entrepreneurs are usually blinded by the grandiosity of their dreams and think that that is all that is needed. Roll up your sleeves, please, or close shop!

Yes, passion is good. It fills you with that burning desire to live your dreams. But you need to put in a lot of work if you want to be successful. You must continuously review and strategically execute your plans.

Going at it alone

It makes sense, doesn't it? After all, you found a need, came up with an idea of how to meet it, why not do it alone? Its very easy to assume that because you are the one who knows your product well, or because you came up with the unique idea of meeting a given need, that you don't need the thoughts and ideas of others.

Successful entrepreneurs will tell you that they owe they success to the contributions of friends, mentors and customers. Let other people help you refine your idea.

Not setting realistic goals

If, as the saying goes, what gets measured gets done, why, then, not set goals that can be measured? When I started this blog, I didn't sit down to craft my goals. I believed - and still do -  that entrepreneurs need endless watering holes to keep their fires burning. I was going to provide them with one.

Blinded by the desire to inspire at least one person to success, I didn't have a plan of the number of articles I would do every week, month or year. I did not come up with a content timetable among other things. I just wrote whenever I felt inspired. That's how we fail, by not setting realistic goals.

9 out of 10 entrepreneurs set unrealistic goals. The grandiosity of their goals will surprise you. Oftentimes, they don't know the intermediate steps towards the realization of their goals. For any goal to be achieved, you must set smaller ones which incrementally will see you achieve your dreams. Don't be fooled by the wonder of your next big thing.

To spend or not to spend?

To spend or not to spend?  -  that is the new question. Thanks Shakespeare!

One of the biggest nightmares of the entrepreneur is deciding how much money to spend on their business. Spend too little and you get little or nothing done. Spend too much and you fold up and go back home!

Not taking time to market

You have probably heard this before, but I am going to say it anyway: Your idea is not going to sell itself! There are several ways of getting people to get to know your product and purchase it. One of the biggest platform of our time is the social media. Harness its power and see the tremendous benefits you'll get. Ignore it and well, close shop!

Until next time, cheers!

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