Becoming a business owner is an exciting accomplishment and something you may have been working towards for the greater part of your life. Pivoting your time and finances towards this goal can sometimes become your highest priority. While being extremely dedicated to your work is crucial to your success, at times this can lead to your downfall as well. Having extreme tunnel vision can oftentimes negatively affect your overall success. You may be self-sabotaging your own business plans without even being aware.
Throughout your entire process, be conscious of creating balance all across the board. From setting up your company’s finances to focusing on hiring the best team to accomplish your goals, the room for errors may become very apparent. Be sure to take a step back and develop self-awareness throughout all aspects of your business. Below we have curated a list of major ways you could be hurting yourself, and what you can do to avoid these common mistakes.
Putting off Financial Decisions
Naturally, as a business owner, there are numerous decisions to be made daily. From where you want to base your operation to what you want to price your product at, decisiveness is crucial. It can be easy to become hyper-focused on one section of your plan and neglect the others. It’s essential to distribute time within each area of your responsibilities so that you avoid overlooking any major decisions.
When it comes to being prone to mistakes, financial decisions may be the most difficult. It is very common to procrastinate these choices. If you go down the wrong path, you may subject yourself to a bigger financial hole to dig out of. To avoid this, be sure to have a handle on your personal financial situation as well as your professional one. With a clear view of both, there are opportunities for both to support each other. If you are a homeowner with a limited budget for your business, consider taking out a home equity loan. This will not only allow you to jumpstart your business but take it to the next level. With a home equity loan, you will get approved for a loan that is a portion of your equity while having a lower interest rate. Even if your company is past the beginning phase, a home equity loan could still be beneficial when funding ongoing business projects. If this is a pain point for your business, you may be avoiding this altogether. Again, this is a mistake. Tackle your debt right away and use the tools you have available in front of you.
Consistently telling yourself “I’m not good enough” or “This will fail” can become your normal self-talk that could lead to underlying damage to your business. Lacking confidence may be causing more harm than you think. While it is normal to feel these things on occasion, it does not mean these statements are completely true. The more you speak them into existence the more they will prove to be true in your day-to-day life. To combat this, start off by identifying your feelings and thoughts when you are experiencing this negative self-talk. Pinpointing what makes you feel this way will help you grow and teach yourself how to reverse these emotions. When you start to feel this way, switch around the wording, “I can do anything I set my mind to” or “We hit our goals this week.” Being confident in your product is half the battle.
Becoming a Creature of Habit
You found what works for you and stuck to it. It’s extremely easy to follow the same procedures within your original business plan. While this can make sense in the short term, adopting these habits forever, without the opportunity to be flexible, can be detrimental to your business. You may have a productive habit in place and it could be worth considering keeping, however, if you don’t take a step back and assess it you may be shooting yourself in the foot. Not only will it lure you into not being able to adapt well in progressive markets, but you will also be less likely to take risks when you need it most.
How can we break these self-destructive habits? It’s simple. At the end of every week, set aside time to analyze and revise your past week of work. Have you been working until 10:30 p.m. every night? If this is the case, this could be becoming a toxic habit for you to maintain. Instead, set yourself a hard stop at 7:00p.m every night so you can separate work and home. Did you not speak up in a meeting when you had a difference of opinion? Staying quiet can become your new normal fairly quickly and may be hindering you from truly taking control of your company. To combat this, work on your communication skills. Allow yourself to speak your mind within the context of each problem. Becoming self-aware of these bad habits will propel you to be flexible and riskier on your path to success while launching the business further than before.
When starting a business it can be very easy to want to have a hand in everything. However, as you’ll quickly realize, this is not realistic. Essentially you are self-sabotaging by creating your own stressors, that shouldn’t even exist! Time is your most valuable asset and should be treated as such. Building your team out is detrimental to your success as a company and will help you find ways to delegate. Finding like-minded people to further your goal as an organization will allow you to focus on the heavier and more time-consuming tasks at hand. Take time to be strategic with your new hires and be sure to ask the questions that will be imperative to your prosperity. Asking those questions will allow you to weed out the professionals that technically wouldn’t match your ideal culture. Once you build out your team, delegating is your natural next step. Busy work and smaller tasks will be passed off to employees and your time is freed up to focus on your company’s overall growth.
Over-excitement can cause any entrepreneur to make big promises that they may not be able to cash in on. If you are a growing company, you may not have all of the resources necessary to follow up on these orders. It’s crucial not to become unreliable to your customers. Being realistic with your consumers from the get-go will allow you to deliver on their tasks while avoiding excuses when you are unable to hit their deadlines.
Transparency should be your priority here, with yourself and your potential customers. Before becoming public, record all of your resources and analyze what you can produce with them. For example, if clothing is your main production ask yourself, how many items do I currently have? How quickly am I able to produce more? Having this conversation with yourself will fish out important information before going live. Offering a realistic version of your product will allow your inventory to become as clear as possible to those searching for them.
The unknown can set us up to make these self-sabotaging mistakes. While we cannot eliminate every habit we have instilled, we can put our best effort into trying to combat the ones we identify. As entrepreneurs, we will come across numerous obstacles, let’s not be one of them!