SCORE

Business owners and leaders sometimes focus on just a couple of key areas within their business, while other areas seem fine and they don’t want to change anything. They want to focus on revenue, and if that’s going well they don’t want to look into the marketing numbers, or the message, or look ahead to make any changes to that department.

Here are just 10 deadly small business mistakes/traps that many owners and leaders make-not intentionally.

  1. Ignoring Your Cash Position:
    Your customers may not respond to your superior product/service in the timeframe that you think they should. Therefore, you will need plenty of cash to sustain yourself in the meantime.
  2. Ignoring Employees:
    Motivating, coaching and managing your staff is probably one of your toughest challenges as an entrepreneur/business owner today! Without your patience, persistence and "people skills," your problems can multiply quickly. Morale, productivity AND PROFITS can easily be destroyed!
  3. No Sales Plan:
    Sales are great, why create a sales plan-right? Without a sales plan, there's no serious way to gage the financial growth and progress of your business. You need a realistic map for where the sales will come from, how they'll come and from whom.
  4. No Marketing Plan:
    A marketing plan creates the kind of attention you want to get in front of your target customers. It is what attracts people to you! A good marketing plan implemented effectively, efficiently, elegantly and consistently, will eliminate the need for "cold calls!”
  5. Not Knowing Your Customers:
    Changes in your customers' preferences and your competitors' products and services can leave you in the dust unless you get to know your customers well, what they want now and will likely want in the future, what their buying patterns are, and how you can be a resource for them even if you don't have the right products or services for them now!
  6. Confusing Likelihood with Reality:
    The successful entrepreneur lives in a world of likelihood but spends money in the world of reality.
  7. Getting Married to an Idea And Sticking with it too Long:
    Don't marry a single idea. Remember, ideas are the currency of entrepreneurs. Play with many ideas and see which ones bring money and success.
  8. Being the Lone Ranger:
    You might be the key to everything BUT you cannot DO everything and grow at the same time. Even modest success can overwhelm you unless you hire the right staff and delegate responsibility.
  9. No Mentor:
    Get an advisory board or a mentor! Sounds crazy for a small operation? It's not! The board can be family members that you trust, or friends. Ask them to be your board of directors and review your business plans and results with them. Join a mastermind group. Having someone to bounce ideas off and get an objective opinion is critical. Get free SCORE Mentoring here. 
  10. Giving Up:
    Some of the most successful entrepreneurs failed several times before doing extremely well. So, if you're failing, fail. And fail fast. And learn. And try again, with this new wisdom. Do NOT give up. Yet, do not suffer, either.

One Important Ingredient for Business Success

One of the most important things you need to acquire in order to succeed in business is... knowledge.

Sounds crazy? You have heard that before? Listen to this...

According to research conducted by Dun & Bradstreet,

90% of all small business failures can be traced to poor management resulting from lack of knowledge.

If you are really serious about succeeding in a business, and you would like to avoid the common traps and mistakes, then it is absolutely necessary that you acquire the right knowledge. (See mistake #9). I’m not talking about the easy way to get knowledge-the Internet. Because everything that is on the Internet is truthful and will work for you in your business – NOT!

If you haven’t figured it out already, it is very difficult to know whom to believe on the Internet. So many people make ridiculous claims-do this don’t do that. Who are you going to believe? 

Have you been making any of these mistakes?  If so, what are you going to do right now to correct those mistakes and get the results you want in your business?

Greater Phoenix SCORE has local, live workshops on a variety of business topics regulary so you have NO EXCUSE! Check out the class schedule here. 

About the Author(s)

 Steve   Feld

Steve Feld, MBA is a certified business coach that provides training and business performance coaching to business owners, professionals and executives. He has owned and operated 6 businesses and operated 3 large corporations with Fortune 500 Companies.

Business Coach, Feld Business Growth
10 Deadly Small Businesses Mistakes You Need to Know