Entrepreneurship is a tricky choice to make. On one hand, there are so many things that you have to do to achieve success and growth, while on the other there is an equally lengthy list of things that you absolutely must NOT do at any cost if you want your venture to survive.
Don’t be afraid to fail
The biggest mistake you can make is to be afraid of failure. Failure is key to your success, and jumping into your fear is very positive for your future business. How you pick up after failure and learn from your mistakes is the key to great success.
Being organized is key. Running a small business is like being a circus ringmaster. It’s normal to have dozens of things happening at once. So, I have a daily task list, things that I need to do. And I list them by their priority. It sounds simple, but it works, and makes me far more productive.
Thinking your age matters
It doesn’t! If you’re willing to put your blood, sweat and tears into building something truly great, the only thing that will matter is if you execute. Don’t be timid about expressing your ideas because of your age. It’s these new and fresh ideas that are shaping our future — don’t wait and miss out on your turn to create change. Also, don’t blame your age or lack of experience when you lose a deal. Chances are it wasn’t your age, it was because you didn’t convince potential partners or investors of the value of your idea.
Failing to focus
You need to have a clear set of goals and objectives — and stick to them. Some ideas, even if they sound great, might need to be put on the back burner to prevent you from losing your focus. Avoid chasing “shiny baubles” and stay the course. If something doesn’t directly help you achieve one of the goals and objectives on your list, just say no.
Hiring your best buds
Don’t just hire a friend because you like hanging out with them. Hire a friend if they have a relevant skill set and if it’s the right move to help grow your business. It’s also important that everyone within the office — including you — can work together effectively and accept constructive criticism, without it being misconstrued as personal.
Don’t move too slowly
Having been a first-time founder who made many mistakes, I realize in hindsight that I never made decisions fast enough. I was slow to recognize that a relationship with a business partner wasn’t working out, that my customer wasn’t willing to pay enough money to sustain our business, that investors weren’t interested in funding my business no matter how much they liked me, etc.
Grow at the right pace
I have had a lot of people who want to invest in my company. One of the biggest mistakes you can do is a partner with someone just because of the money. The investor is more important than money. You need to pick someone that shares your vision and morals. It is OK to be picky when it comes to an investor.