Like any other entrepreneur, you are probably fired up about putting your business ideas into motion. That’s an excellent step in the right direction! But what do you do after that? According to the Office for National Statistics, about 80% of start-up businesses fail in the first year. This is primarily due to the common avoidable mistakes these businesses make. Here are some of the mistakes you should avoid in starting up your business to put you on the path to success.
Ignoring the importance of a business plan
Many start-up businesses fail to understand and appreciate the planning stage. Although you may have a fantastic business idea, failing to plan would inevitably mean planning to fail. A business plan helps you outline the various essential elements of your business and implement methods to achieve them. Strategy deployment, marketing, cost of operations, and expected profits are a few concepts to include in your business plan. Creating a business plan would go a long way in keeping you consistent, tracking your progress, and ensuring you are driven and organised.
Not setting SMART goals
For every business to operate successfully, it needs to create goals that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely (SMART). These goals give the business direction and set in operation the nature of its operations. To create SMART goals, you need to ensure that the business aims are clear and relevant to its operations and can be tracked to ensure progress is being made. You should also ensure that your business can attain these goals by implementing various strategies and steps to lead you to its completion. Lastly, give yourself an expected day or time of completion of your goals.
Failure to ask for help
As a business owner, it is a common misconception to believe you are in control of all the business’ activities. The truth is, it is impossible to do it on your own. Instead, find trustworthy and seasoned advisors to give you wise counsel whenever you need it. Such individuals serve as mentors on an advisory board, offering advice on issues concerning strategies and helping you overcome challenges you may face while running a business. It would be best if you also considered hiring business consultants to give your start-up expert advice on the journey ahead.
Partnering with the wrong investors
Many start-ups fail to realise that their first investors can either make or break it. When looking for investors, finding those interested in the business’ growth and sustainability is essential. It is also advisable to enter into contracts with your investors – and other parties to your company, for that matter. New business owners tend to shy away from creating contracts. However, doing so would go a long way to protecting the business and even forming better and functional relationships.
Paying little to no attention to technology
In today’s digital age, technology has come to play an essential role in business. Therefore, ignoring this integral aspect of the business would be setting yourself up for failure. Customers want to be satisfied by your services, and digital solutions would do just that. For your business to achieve its goals and plans, you would need to ensure efficiency and productivity. Fortunately, digital solutions such as management softwares can do this for you. Strategies such as marketing have also been affected by the digital transformation era of business. Today, businesses are focused mainly on digital marketing solutions to reach their preferred audience from across the globe. Therefore, it is essential to keep the importance of technology in mind when launching your business and make investments accordingly.
Undervaluing or overvaluing your products or services
Sometimes, due to the fear of failure, many businesses tend to undervalue their products and services to make them more “affordable” for their target audience. And on the other hand, due to overconfidence, some businesses would over-price their products and services to give their target audience the idea that they offer something special or unique. However, making your products or services cheap or expensive is not an excellent way to earn the success you look to achieve. It can be challenging to recover from such a feat. Therefore, conduct extensive market research on the different market prices, customer preferences, and competitors’ prices to identify and set the costs to your goods and services.
With these mistakes in mind, you can ensure that your business makes the right decisions and takes the proper steps to ensure its success over an extended period.