Last Updated on February 14, 2020
These are the mistakes to avoid as a new entrepreneur. While the list may not be extremely comprehensive, we share the common mistakes entrepreneurs face and how best to avoid them.
- Learn how to be a salesperson and how to sell your idea. 15% of the Fortune 500 CEO’s started in sales.
- Learn how to ask for advice, not just when to ask or from whom.
- Don’t take out a high-interest loan. Instead, use the Rollover as Business Startup Solution.
Mistakes to Avoid as a New Entrepreneur
1. Quit/Give Up
Perhaps the biggest mistake you can make as an entrepreneur is to give up on your dreams. Whenever times get rough (and they will), ask yourself why you wanted to become an entrepreneur in the first place. It could be that you have a product that will improve people’s lives, or an idea that you’re extremely passionate about.
Take a moment to reflect on what drove you to start your own business. Then ask yourself if abandoning your vision is something your gut is telling you to do, or what your nerves have tricked you into believing.
Here are a few other tips to keep you from giving up:
- Surround yourself with fellow entrepreneurs, because your family and friends who work corporate 9-5 jobs most likely won’t understand your struggles or motivations.
- Network as much as possible, because you never know when the right connection will turn into your big break.
- Get in touch with successful entrepreneurs, and find out how they navigated hardships.
2. Forget to be a Salesperson First
One of the biggest mistakes you can make is underestimating the importance of being a salesperson.
In other words, don’t just focus on being an inventive entrepreneur or the owner of a small business. Your primary objective should be to learn how to sell your service or product better than your competition.
Think of a few of the greatest entrepreneurs today: Zuckerberg and Musk, for example, are both incredible salesmen.
These days, more than ever before, how you sell is just as important as what you’re selling. Unless your idea is truly original, you will be surrounded by competitors with a similar (if not exact) idea. And there are more platforms new entrepreneurs can use to sell their ideas, or more creative ways in which to do so.
Because of this, some industry experts say that how you sell may be even more important than what you’re selling.
So, be a salesperson first. After all, 15% of Fortune 500 CEO’s began in sales.
3. Never Learn How to Ask for Advice
You need to learn how to ask for advice by asking the right questions.
For example, when given the opportunity to come face to face with a successful entrepreneur you admire, don’t ask them about the current successes in their current position. If you’re a new entrepreneur, ask them questions about what they did when they first started out. Ask questions that you can directly apply to your stage in the entrepreneurial journey.
For example, find out ways they made their business succeed when they first began, such as creating a flexible business plan.
4. Stop Acting Like an Employee
Being your own boss comes with its advantages, but one disadvantage is the loss of accountability. Many new entrepreneurs may lose accountability because they no longer have someone paying them $30/hour, who expects to see them in the office everyday at 9 a.m., or constantly challenges them to grow.
If you can be your own boss in the strictest sense of the word, then you may not worry about making this mistake. If you know you’re going to lose accountability by becoming an entrepreneur, thus your own boss, this is a weakness you should improve, and there are ways of doing so.
Try these to get you started:
- Create work hours that are similar to a 9 to 5 job.
- Create a work schedule, such as responsibilities you need to perform during the week.
- Always put a deadline to projects, otherwise they may take months to complete, or even slip through the cracks.
And don’t stop there. Find other ways to maintain an employee mindset – discipline yourself if you’re constantly late, dress professionally whenever you’re on the job, and complete each task as if you’re gunning for a raise.
5. Take out High Interest Loans
Don’t take out a high-interest loan if it can be avoided. And guess what? It can be avoided.
This tip may come as a surprise to you, because you may ask yourself: How else am I going to get the funds I need to start my business? Well, you can tap into your 401(k) or IRA to start a new business, or provide additional funding to an existing business. By employing the Rollover as Business Startup (ROBS) Solution, you can do this tax and penalty-free based on an exception to the prohibited transaction rules.
The ROBS Solution is a complex structure, and your first step is to find a company that can do it properly. At IRA Financial, we know how to correctly establish the Rollover as Business Startup Solution that is completely IRS and ERISA approved. Don’t take on debt if it can be avoided – speak with a specialist today at 800-472-0646.
Avoid these mistakes as an entrepreneur, and you’re well on your way to turning your dreams into reality and staying off the pages of Chapter Seven.