It doesn’t matter if you’re surfing solo from a couch in the living room or you’re starting off with a small team. The moment you decide to start your own business, the unexpected will appear and things will go wrong.
In business, challenges are inevitable … you’ll be faced with the uncertainty of how to go about doing things, deal with the internal struggle of whether or not you can really accomplish your goals, become annoyed by the little voice in the back of your head questioning whether or not you’re good enough, but the burning desire in your heart for more (even when you’re not exactly sure what more is ) will pull you through, if it’s strong enough.
Stay calm, as rough as it may seem your highs will hopefully outweigh your lows. The key is to keep growing through everything you go through and staying focused on moving forward no matter what.
Here is a short list of mistakes business newbies make and how to avoid them … keep reading so you can make sure you know what they are and avoid them all together.
No B-Plan, Lack of Direction
You’ll become easily flustered, confused lack direction on route to realizing all your big lofty dreams if you don’t take an hour or two and come up with a plan. No need for anything too fancy or overly detailed – unless you’re applying for financing or have a business that involves human liability. Personally, I don’t think a traditional business plan is necessary but it’s completely up to you. All you need is an outline that describes where you are now and where you would like to go. It can just be a list of things you want to do and achieve in the next few months. Think about it like a map, with basic directions to where you want to go and how you think you can get there. Please don’t get hung up on making your plan too complicated it really doesn’t have to be.
Lists have become my go to organizational method of the last several months. Being organized and figuring out what will actually work for you requires understanding your personality, work style and trying a few things to see what works best for you. I’ve come to find out that there is no one-size-fit-all way to stay organized. I actually use a binder and in it I have a number of lists and an outline of my priorities I need to complete throughout the day – I also use Google calendar to keep abreast of all appointments, daily tasks and things I need to be reminded of I then sync that with my iPhone and MacBook. I’ve tried all sorts of methods and planners but this seems to be what works best for me. You can list things like your deliverables at the end of a certain milestone, your general to-get-gone list items both personal and business, the number of people you need to tell about your business everyday, and what you hope to achieve in the long run. Giving yourself a must-be-done-by type due date also helps. If you make it a habit to do this on daily, monthly and quarterly basis and you’ll be okay when it’s all said and done, trust me.
Skipping Out on Brainstorming and Research
You may think your idea is all amazing and oh-so-incredible, but unless you ask the people who will actually use what you’ve come up with you’ll really never know.
Don’t be scared to talk about and/or share your ideas in exchange for feedback – go beyond just asking your family, best friend, or any other random people. Be intentional and speak to the people your product/service was intended for, you never know what you’ll hear or come across just through having a little chat with someone.
At one point, even I was not the greatest at letting down my guard, finding the courage to say hello to other people in a networking setting. But getting through those nerves can potentially be the best thing you do for your business!
You can also network on social media … by simply responding to the people who like, share or comment on your stuff and by also going out of your way to do the same for people you like and follow.
Doing a lot of Things All At Once
It’s common to have a million ideas swimming around in your head at once, but the smartest thing you can do is focus on the power of one.
Take one step at a time, focus on one thing at a time, get one thing up and running well … before you add another thing or component. I am the queen of ideas and come up with them more frequently than I care to admit but there’s no way for me to possibly act on all of them, so I keep a mental note or jot them down in a place I can revisit at a later date. Taking on too much at once is a guaranteed way to spread yourself thin, something is sure to fall through the cracks. It’s not possible to do a good job on several ideas at once. It’s a better idea to give your all to one thing at a time so all your ideas end up amazing in the end!
Getting Distracted and Losing Focus
It’s easy to get caught up in non-income generating activities that leave your core business ignored. Plan your day the night before. Prioritize and set daily goals, give yourself boundaries, limit your time on social media, watching tv or doing things that don’t serve your greater purpose.
Spending Too Much Time In Comparison City
There is seemingly a natural urge to want to compare yourself to others. It’s great to be inspired by all the amazing things that other people in your industry or otherwise are doing but it’s important not to compare your chapter one to someone else chapter 52. By the time someone becomes noticeable or even popular they’ve most likely been at the game for longer than you have at least five years or more. There is no such thing as overnight success and so while you may visit comparison city every now and then please whatever you do … don’t live there.
Forgetting To Take It Easy Sometimes, We All Need a Little Netflix & Chill
Believe me, everyone needs some relaxation and time out, especially when you are in that ‘stressed-out-gotta-get-everything-done-because-I-just-started-a-business’ phase. Occasionally take a break, do things that you love and leave all the other stuff behind once in a while. Spend time with the Fam, have a day out with your girls, go on a blind date or even spend a day at the spa. Do something that will take your mind off of everything if only for a few hours, the last thing you want to do is get burned out. Yes! I’m all for going hard or going home but not being mindful of self care and self preservation serves no one in the end you need to be your best to do your best.
Let me know what you think, does any of the above resonate with you. Leave your thoughts in the comments below, I would love to hear from you.