If you are starting your own business, or are already a well-established franchise, you can’t discredit the fact that most companies die out in that beginning phase. Whether from a lack of passion, a lack of resources, or lack of time and knowledge, those first few months/years can be your most challenging. This article is going delve into the top 5 reasons business in those first stages of development meet their end, and how not to fall into the same traps.
Reason #1 Improper Delegation
The first months, even the first years of beginning your own company can carry with it endless hours of work with relatively little pay off at first. The mistake a lot of businesses fall into is trying to do everything at once, and in turn spreading themselves too thin. If you’re not delegating some of your responsibilities to others on your team, or an independent company you’ve hired, then you risk getting burnt out and giving up, or ending up with a jumbled up mess that has no capability to sell.
Jennifer Beukman of Entrepreneur.com writes:
“if you have ambitions of growing into a bigger company one day, it’s essential that you learn to leverage the skills of others.”
Obviously, the goal of any small business is to grow which makes delegation key, that way you can focus on managing your business for growth as opposed to juggling every corner of the company yourself.
Reason #2 Not Having A Clear Cut Vision/Mission Statement
The most important aspect of your business, from square one to 30 years down the line, is your vision, your mission statement. What is it you’re trying to communicate with your audience? Do you know your buyer persona? What benefit are you trying to serve them all? A great example of a mission statement is Sony’s clear and broad statement:
“To be a company that inspires and fulfills your curiosity.”
Notice how it doesn’t say “To be a company that sells awesome gaming systems and TVs.” Does Sony do that? Of course, but selling those gaming and television systems are also meeting the mission statement of satisfying curiosity. If you’re an up and coming retail store designed around shirts with animals on them for instance, and for every sale made, 5% of it goes toward a charity for African wildlife. An acceptable mission statement would be “To spread the culture of African wildlife while financially assisting charities for their health”
Now this is just an example, it’s called a mission statement because it’s the mission that you or your team wanted to be the goal of the organization. Not knowing why you’re doing what you’re doing could cloud judgment, hurt morale, and make the future of the organization ambiguous.
Reason #3 The Excuse Of Lacking Of Knowledge/Training
This applies especially to young entrepreneurs (under the age of 25) that may have limited to no experience in running a business or what exactly that entails. But this is actually a huge stigma in business, that you have to have x amount of experience before being able to create and manage a successful business. No matter who you are or how much experience you have, you started at square one at some point in the past, and though square one can be intimidating, it only is so because it’s territory that is unknown and uncomfortable to you.
With anything, the only way to get better at something is to research, practice, and repeat until you get a successful result. John Schmol, owner of two businesses, Ink Harmony and Frugal Rules, goes to say:
“If you’re waiting until you know everything about running a business, you’ll never do anything. You don’t need a business degree to run your own business. You do need to spend some time thinking through what skill, service or product you can sell or offer.”
He couldn’t be more right. How many times growing up did you not want to do homework because you didn’t understand it? The key here is to not get intimidated and do your research and homework until you get it right. And remember that you may need to do this a hundred times before you get it right, which brings us to our next reason.
Reason #4 Giving Up
You’re 3 months into the startup process and just realized how all encompassing this system is. Creating a team of like-minded people, research and practice, failure after failure, and you’re convinced that your idea just isn’t cut out to be great. So you give up because obviously, you’re just not good at it right? Absolutely wrong.
Starting your own business is a great test of patience and determination. The most well-known example of this is Bill Gates, who dropped out of Harvard because his business Traf-O-Data failed, but his passion continued. He figured out that Harvard wasn’t where he needed to be to reach success, so he took his failure to the garage and created one of the biggest companies of our time, Microsoft. Life is riddled with setbacks and failures, especially when you and 100 million+ people are all trying to start a business at the same time. It can be frustrating and challenging, but like all good things, a fight is almost always required to attain them.
Reason #5 Great Company, Fantastic Campaign, Wrong Audience
This happens to far too many businesses. You have this company that has a uniquely diversified product/service, have an amazing team, and have created a sound marketing campaign that to the naked eye has no flaws. So what went wrong? Well, you can’t sell watermelons to those that are only trying to buy apples. Professionally said, if your buyer persona is not aligned correctly, then no one will buy your product. If you’re a spa company that specializes in “gentleman’s services” then creating an amazing social media campaign for general spa services could cause issues.
The problem? You don’t offer pedicures, manicures, and massages, which are general spa services. This could get you into trouble because someone could visit your location and not find what they expect to find at your store, annoying them, maybe to the point of writing a negative review. If that’s your first review, then you’re off to a dangerous start.
This may seem super nitty gritty but it’s the little things that combine and create a positive/negative impression over time, ask anyone who has ever started a business. Make sure you have spent adequate time exploring your field of clients, maybe “gentleman services” include a professional combing and shampooing package, this could be its own buyer persona that you could tap into. Never look at your product/service at face value, always be looking to expand your understanding of who else your product/service can assist.
Everyone wants to stay in their comfort zone, sadly starting your own business is smack dab in the middle of unknown territory. The key is to not give up on your ideas and passion, no matter how many times you get kicked down. Ensure that your vision is clear and concise and that you’re appealing to an audience that specifically wants your product/service.
Find a team that shares your specific ideas, there are also companies all around you that offer the services you’re searching for. For instance, Serchii is offering, for a very limited time, both our premier and corporate packages for free. These packages include your businesses own dedicated landing page, blog posts, social media updates, the ability to post updated events and videos as well as create coupons and sell your product/service. You can’t expect to do everything at once so contact Serchii today to take some of that weight off your shoulders, and focus on becoming that next Microsoft you know your business is destined to be.