At Business Connector, we help plenty of entrepreneurs grow their businesses each year. In all these entrepreneurs, we see an immense desire to succeed; however, we also see a lot of common mistakes, regardless of industry. No matter what stage you are at in the entrepreneurial process, it’s essential to understand the most common pitfalls that entrepreneurs are constantly unwittingly falling into. Here are 5 of the most common ones we see:
1. Not doing enough networking
Networking is an incredibly important activity for any professional, but especially so for entrepreneurs. There are plenty of statistics out there about the importance of networking: 85% of job openings are filled via networking, 72% of businessmen say they were influenced by looks or a handshake, and 95% say that face-to-face meetings are essential for long term business relationships. As an entrepreneur, you need all the help you can get, and networking opens up doors for potential customers, references, employees, and investors to interact with. Attend as many networking events as possible – even if it means you’re busy all day, the connections you make for your business will be worth the extra effort. You can’t expect your business to grow if you don’t do your best to make it visible and get your name out there.
2. Trying to do it all on their own
As I’m sure you know, being an entrepreneur is a time-consuming lifestyle, and it’s tough to stay on top of all your tasks. A common mistake entrepreneurs make is trying to do it all on their own, and not seeking out help when it’s clear they need some. As an entrepreneur, you should be focused on the direction of the business and the growth of the company. Sometimes it’s best to outsource or hire someone to take care of tedious tasks so that you can stay set on your main goal: growing your business. Even though money may seem too tight to be able to afford that.
3. Setting unrealistic goals
Another common mistake for entrepreneurs is not setting realistic goals. While it’s great to have confidence in your business, being over-confident can, unfortunately, lead to a lot of unintended consequences later on in the process. Patience is one of the most important traits an entrepreneur can have- many start-ups don’t make money for a while after their inception, and it’s naïve to think that your company will come in and immediately make a large profit. Tempering expectations and running your business realistically will lead to better results, as well as be more desirable to potential investors.
4. Not focusing on customer service
As an entrepreneur, one of the few advantages you have over larger companies is your ability to provide personal customer service. Every customer is an asset to you, so treating them well and responding quickly to all their concerns goes a long way towards keeping their business, as well as getting more. Your reputation is especially important as an entrepreneur, so maintaining it and being known as a reliable business owner helps shed your business in a good light, and goes a long way towards growing your business.
5. Not embracing social media
Social media is one of the most important tools in today’s business world; those who think they don’t need social media or otherwise ignore it are ignoring an incredible resource to early-stage businesses. No matter the business you’re in, from restaurants to retirement homes, your customers use social media. In Australia alone, 66% of the population uses Facebook regularly– that’s more than 16 million Australians! To not embrace social media puts you at a direct disadvantage to your competitors, making a social media presence essential to any startup.
These are just a few of the common mistakes we see entrepreneurs making. For a complete guide, download our free eBook: The 101 Ways to Catapult Your Business to Stardom, and you’ll have the full blueprint to successfully growing your business!