Launching and running a startup is no easy task; it takes time and experience to create a business model, develop and validate products or services, and figure out how to best allocate financial resources.
Most entrepreneurs have had their fair share of hits and misses and, luckily for others, many of them have shared their experiences in the hopes of helping other avoid the mistakes they made in the past.
Below are some of the most common startup mistakes any entrepreneur should avoid.
We get it, you’re excited about your business venture and you fully believe in it. However, rushing into funding rounds, launching to the market, or scaling can have negative consequences. Building a successful product, service, and company takes time; it’s important that you set out short-term and long-term goals. Remember that sales take time, especially when you’re building a name for yourself. It’s more important to do it the right way than the fast way.
Creating and building a product or service often involves a lot of changes. Many people create a product or service based on their understanding of what the market needs, yet it often happens that what the market is interested in is different. Many products and services have changed as they go through A/B testing and market validation.
Clinging to an initial idea of a product or service can ruin the potential of a business. Make sure you are testing your ideas and that you are gathering feedback and data from users. Don’t create something based on your gut, create something based on research and evidence.
One of the most common mistakes of entrepreneurs is thinking they can tackle it all. This only leads to burnout and stress. Instead of micromanaging your team, focus on delegating task. You can write down processes, you can create a guidebook, and you can create job descriptions to make sure that everyone is aware of each other’s responsibilities and tasks. Set up a collaboration channel and follow-up with everyone about milestones and tasks. If you empower those around you, your business is more likely to thrive.
Focusing on PR before you’re ready
When you’re involved in the day to day of a startup, you’re excited by what’s happening and you want to share it all with the world. However, before you go out and create a buzz and set out expectations, make sure you, your team, and your product are fully ready. Remember that once people hear about your product or service, they will want immediate access to it, and they will have lots of questions. Prepare and be ready before calling the national press or making a huge social media announcement.
Pro tip: many startups are built at home or in garages; though there’s nothing wrong with that, it’s important that you present a professional image when speaking with clients or investors. Consider setting up a virtual office address and renting a meeting room for times when you need to meet with clients or investors or need to give a presentation.