ing an entrepreneur is a dream to which many people aspire. However, many first-time business owners, and even experienced ones, can sabotage their best efforts through avoidable mistakes. Business is not a play ground, it is an investment on a basis of solving a problem. If your reward for solving problem is not sustainable, you may soon dump such passion for something else. Business requires strategic planning and implementation in all pillars holding the business. When you’re ready to roll-up your sleeves and start your own business, keep your eyes open for these five issues. Though they might sound simple, these have been make-or-break issues for the fortunes of countless aspiring entrepreneurs.
- Have a business plan
Much on the sayings, if you fail to prepare, you prepare to fail. Business requires good planning, not in a sketchy or skeletal manner but in a formal way. Not creating a business plan is perhaps one of the most common mistakes, and it’s a troubling one, because business plans can help you identify issues with your idea, and also help market to potential investors or other sources of funding. Before you start on a new venture, draft a simple business plan that identifies your proposed product or service, the costs involved, your funding needs, your competitors, potential customers and market opportunity. Also detail realistic challenges your business can expect to face.
- Be guided in spending
Businees revolves around funding and how fund is being used. This is a very crucial part of any business as it defines and determines the sustainability of any business in respect to funds management. With a business plan in hand, you’ll have a better sense of your funding needs, which will help you avoid two classic traps: over- or under-spending. Some entrepreneurs misjudge costs, and end up spending more than they budgeted, while others spend too little to give their business a realistic chance, in the mistaken belief that being careful and frugal is always the right way to proceed.
- Do customers research
Failure to do know your customer is like serving blindly in the tunnel. Do you really know your customer, and market? Do you know whether they have a desire or need for your product or service, or whether your proposed pricing makes sense? Do you intend on competing on price, quality, service, or all of the above? Get to know your customers and market. Many businesses stumble because they fail to understand their target market. And when you’re ready to expand, don’t assume new customers in different areas will have the same tastes and priorities — get to know them, too.
- Quality collaboration
The same issue of too much or too little is present when considering business partners. In many cases, you can’t launch a venture alone — you’ll need partners or investors for funding and know-how. But you can overdo it, by bringing on too many people, diluting your profit, and confusing your strategy. Your business plan will hopefully have considered this issue, but think further about who should really be involved, and what impact it’ll have on your venture.
- Market and market
Even if your product is the best thing that has ever happened to humanity, it serves nothing without proper marketing. Too many entrepreneurs have good products or services, but do a lousy job of marketing. If you know your customer and market, this should be less of an issue. You’ll know what blogs they read, and where they hang out in real life and on social media. You can market to them based on their habits and lifestyle. Don’t assume traditional advertising is dead, either. Depending on your business, billboards or radio ads might make sense, and overreliance on social media might backfire.