Small business owners can often be branded as fools if they commit any of the following business sins and we want to make sure that you're not one of them:
Not Having A Business Plan
When starting a business, or running an existing business, there is nothing more important than your business plan. It is the roadmap of your businesses past, present and future and is a document that should be continually updated.
It should outline your current situation, your plans, your budgets, your team, your competitors and your USP. Without a business plan, your company will look weak and unorganised, foolish even!
This isn't a foolish mistake for everyone who chooses to work with close friends or family, but for some, it can be a recipe for disaster. Friends and family members should undergo the ordinary recruitment process so that you can decide whether or not they are the right fit for the job.
No favouritism or favours given - they could harm the reputation of your business if they aren't working for you for the right reasons.
Refusing To Delegate
Delegating tasks is something that every business owner should do. Teams are built to help a business owner and make their lives easier, but if you're the 'expert' in every part of your business, then you'll never want to allow a team member to complete a task for you.
Also, if you're so busy taking care of every aspect of your business then you'll never have time to grow it and it's extremely foolish to limit your success.
Not Keeping Up With Technology
Technological advances are happening every day in our innovative and advanced world, and keeping up with the latest trends is a must for any business owner. If you're not ahead of the technological game, then you may find your business gets left behind whilst the new, techie savvy businesses takeover. Just remember how quickly Apple ran Sony out of a market they had dominated for years.
I write about procrastination a lot, but it really can be the reason a business fails. As a business owner, you are left with the freedom to do as you please because there is no one there to guide you or tell you off for not getting your work done.
However, being a successful business owner requires focus and drive - procrastination just hinders your productivity and your potential to grow.
Rushing Your Product Launches
Whilst it's always great to be the first to identify a gap in the market, you need to make sure that you undertake sufficient planning and research before you start offering the product or service as this could damage your business name.
So don't be an April fool and make the foolish mistakes that so many small business owners make ... we know you're not a fool!
I had a successful 20-year career as an office manager and personal assistant; however, my job was no longer focused on the customers and became all about the numbers. My customer-focused background began when I was 12 in my father's independent carpet showroom. I had a spell with Marks & Spencer before I moved into office-based jobs. I have worked as a training administrator, a PA and PA/office manager in a variety of industries from manufacturing to the IT education sector.
Meanwhile, my husband Ian, a successful Northampton based Master Decorator and owner of Rainbow Frost, was losing out on work due to missed phone calls. When he was busy, callers were getting his voicemail but weren't leaving messages. I knew how to fix that problem!
I quit my job and took on Ian as the first client of The Office Genie in November 2005. Word quickly spread with the second client coming on board just one week later. The majority of our clients since have come to us through word of mouth recommendations and networking referrals. Over the years, I have become well connected in Northampton and Milton Keynes.
Outside of work I enjoy swimming, roller skating, the theatre and my cats and dogs!
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