I have in my years of experience noticed similarities in young, budding entrespreneurs. I have witnessed the passion and enthusiasm evident in their voices; the hope in their speech as they describe the big future of their businesses. Sadly, this is seldom the case. Expert opinions abound about the pitfalls to avoid or what to do to ensure the sustainability of a new business. However, there are major factors that could sink a business forever if not avoided.
1. You start your business for the wrong reasons.
Many a time, people go into to business for the wrong reasons. Some do because they want to make a lot of money; others do because they prefer being their bosses and dislike answering to someone else. If these are your reasons, you’d better think again.On the other hand, if you start your business for these reasons, you’ll have a better chance at succeeding:
- You have genuine passion and love for what you’ll be doing, and strongly believe that your product or service would fulfill a real need in the market, based on studies and investigation
- You have drive, determination, patience and a positive attitude. When others are wont to call it quits, you are more determined than ever.
- Failures don’t defeat you. You learn from your mistakes, and use these lessons to succeed the next time around.
- You are physically fit and possess the needed mental stamina to withstand potential challenges. Often ignored, ill-health has been responsible for more than a few bankruptcies.
You thrive on independence, and are skilled at taking charge when a creative or intelligent solution is needed. This is especially important when under strict time constraints.
There are other legitimate reasons for starting a business that has the potential to be successful, so make sure your reason is just right.
2. It is not enough to have motivation or passion
In Nigeria today, many entrepreneurs listen to motivational speakers and inspirational talk as it is the in thing . These speakers get them all excited and pumped up, but the reality is that there are many other things-such as technical skills and hiring the right people- that go into the building of a successful business. These elements when mixed with passion, energy and excellence in the right business environment will help a great deal in achieving success.
3. Poor Management
More often than not, the number reason for business failure is poor management. New business owners rarely possess the relevant business and management expertise in key areas like finance, sales, employee management, and so on. As such, they must recognize the areas they need help in and seek for help. If not, they would be headed for disaster.
A business must also not be neglected. Utmost care must be taken to regularly plan, organize and control every activity related to the business. Neglect of a business can also be its downfall. Care must be taken to regularly study, organize, plan and control all activities of its operations. This includes the continuing study of market research and customer data, an area which may be more prone to disregard once a business has been established.
A successful manager is also a good leader who creates a work climate that encourages productivity. He or she has a skill at hiring competent people, training them and is able to delegate. A good leader is also skilled at strategic thinking, able to make a vision a reality, and able to confront change, make transitions, and envision new possibilities for the future.
4. Inadequate Capital
It is a common huge mistake among business owners to not have adequate capital. Most times, they underestimate how much capital is needed, or they usually do not envisage the problems surrounding incoming revenues from sales. This forces them to fold up before they can break even.
It is important to be sure of how much money your business will require to not only start, but to stay in business. You should also take into consideration the fact that some businesses require a longer time than some to get going. This means you will need enough funds to cover all costs until sales can eventually pay for these costs.
5. No Website
It is imperative for your business to have a website if you want to be successful. The number of internet users in Nigeria alone is increasing at an astronomical rate. This means that the potential for new clients is also increasing.
If nothing else, every business should have a professional looking and well-designed website where visitors can avail themselves of the products offered, the contact address and so on. If you do not have a website, you would be losing business to those who do.
In order to achieve success in Business, you should take consider the points listed above and apply them. Your business will then be on its way to greatness!