Skip These 9 Common Pitfalls When Starting A New Business

5 Comments
October 20, 2013 ‐ By Michelle Alerte
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Thinking of starting a business? You’ve probably stewed over the idea, written out a business plan, and begun to debate the pros and cons of a variety of decisions with people you trust. You’re headed in the right direction. But knowing that many new businesses fail within the first five years, it behooves you to keep an eye open to the common pitfalls that could lure even the best small business owner. You’re in luck! Below is a list of nine common mistakes small business owners make. Print it out, study it, and when you find yourself headed towards a trap… run!

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  • guest

    Great Article. There were 2 thingsbon this list that I made a mistake on my first year in business. Undercharging for my services and doing too much. I felt charging lower than my competitors would give me leverage on getting more clients, wrong. I realized that only you can place value on your services. There is a difference between being competitively lower and undercharging. This was a great list and I look forward to reading more articles like this. I appreciate articles that’s informative and educational as opposed to negativity and gossip.

  • Just saying!!

    Oh speaking of a nice list, there is another list I would really appreciate. I’m someone who has a lot of business ideas… So many to the point I never really get to see one come to fruition because by the time I do I have another idea. How do you narrow your ideas down and figure out which ones are worth pursuing? And if it is possible to pursue more than one idea, how do you know which one to start with? My supervisor says start with the most lucrative one so that you can build off of that, and he says also the one that doesn’t involve too much time could be great for starters, but I’d love another opinion!

    • Tonya Garcia

      We’ll definitely work on this! Thanks for the suggestion!

    • Michelle Alerte

      Great question Just Saying!!

      Being a writer I completely understand your dilemma. Very frequently I have SEVERAL story ideas clamoring for purchase at once. I’ve found working on more than one at a time creates inefficiency and confusion. Working on two businesses at a time would be even worse. The back-end work and logistics could easily become entangled and could promote failure before you’ve even had a chance to start. As you won’t get anywhere trying to tackle them all, here is what I’ve learned:

      First be patient-I know how that sounds but it really is a virtue. Accepting that you will have to work one idea at a time will go a long way toward alleviating a great deal of anxiety over picking the right one.

      Next I would make a list. Write down every single idea you have before picking the 3 that jump out at you. After picking your top 3 I would utilize the advice of your supervisor: Which is most lucrative, which won’t take the most time, which has the highest demand, which will take the least amount of capital, etc. But I would add two things: Which idea can you really see happening (i.e. are the most confident about)? Out of the three, which one gives you the least amount of doubt, fear, and hesitation because you can absolutely see it manifesting in reality. And, which one do you love the most and is the most fun for you? I would say choosing one that you are most confident about and feel the most passion for are things you’ll need when the going gets tough as you build your business.

      Finally once you’ve selected the top idea STICK WITH IT (this is also where patience comes in). Don’t question your decision, don’t revisit the list! All the hemming and hawing was done during the decision making phase and now is the time to commit! Work steadily toward developing and implementing the idea and only after it has been completed (can stand on its own) should you then begin work on the next.

      Hope this helps and thanks for reading the article!!

  • Just saying!!

    Nice list!