Common mistakes abound when you start a business. Many times, you are passionate about a particular topic or product. Maybe you woke up one day and said to yourself: It’s time to launch this business! For some, you’re launching a business as a side hustle. Perhaps there’s a franchise opportunity for you that blends your passion and gives you a turnkey program to get started. The more adventurous entrepreneurs skip those steps and go right to opening their own business. Whatever path you choose, there are things you want to have in place when you get started.

In November, Forbes had an excellent article, Remember These 5 Avoidable Mistakes to Increase Your Startup Success. Abdo Riani does a good job of breaking down 5 common mistakes that new businesses make. Unlike many “How-To” articles, this one dives a little deeper.

The 5 Common Mistakes

As Abdo points out, these mistakes are “fully controllable and easily avoidable” when you are starting a business.

  1. Short-Term Success ~ it’s great to start with a quick score. But initial, short-term success doesn’t guarantee the long-term viability of your business.
  2. Premature Growth ~ focus on building the foundation of your business. Growing too fast can actually be a hindrance. As Abdo points out, “Research shows that 70% of startups fail because of premature growth.”
  3. Hiring the Cheapest ~ the right people may be more expensive, but like many other things, you get what you pay for. If you just hire the cheapest option, you may not be happy with the results.
  4. Picking the Wrong Battle ~ Abdo recommends picking a product or service that you know and that you can compete in for years in order to increase you chances of success.
  5. Long Performance Evaluation Cycles ~ this advice relates back to the adage “Done is better than perfect.” Don’t spend too much time trying to perfect your product or service. It’s often better to get the product released and in the hands of your customers. Think of it like software (in case you aren’t in the software business). There are always updates to software, the first version is never perfect.

These five common mistakes provide a good roadmap for you if you are starting your business. Watch out for these as you get your business off the ground and grow. But Abdo also provides four general business rules for a sustainable startup:

  1. Start with a vision but set one short-term goal at a time.
  2. Bread down short-term goals into small achievable milestones and celebrate the small wins.
  3. Be open for change.
  4. Understand that one startup failure is one step closer to building a different sustainable startup even if the ideas are completely different.

Watch out for those mistakes and keep these business rules in mind and you should have a good foundation to build your business upon.

Next Steps

If your ready to get your business idea off the ground, give me a call and mention that you are starting a business. I hold open special Legal Strategy Session appointment slots for new business owners and we can sit down to discuss the process and some next steps to get you up and running – (877) AMAYERS.

Andrew Ayers
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I work with business and estate planning clients to craft legal solutions to protect their legacies.
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