Starting a business comes with many risks, all of which can impact your ability to operate and even stay trading. Small businesses especially can face many challenges simply starting up and gaining the traction they need to keep going; over half of small businesses have led trading within the first three years.
What can you do to reduce this risk and ensure you give yourself the support you need to survive? Firstly, you can avoid doing any of the following.
Not Getting Insurance
Insurance might just seem like an extra payment to fork out that you don’t really get anything back from you. And you will be right; taking out insurance doesn’t always give you much back in return, and in most cases, you wouldn’t want it to. However, the federal government requires that employers have workers’ compensation, unemployment, and disability insurance as a minimum. But they aren’t the only ones you might need or benefit from.
When taking out insurance for small business owners, you need to make sure that the policy covers everything you need it to so that in the event you or someone needs to make a claim, you don’t find yourself without the correct type of cover.
Not Tracking Cash Flow
Money is coming in, great! But are you tracking how much is coming in, where it’s coming in form, and, more importantly, where it is going out to? Poor cash flow is the number one reason why businesses in America fail, and from day one of gaining funding or receiving your first payment, you need to ensure you have up-to-date stringent financial records and budgets in place. Without these, you may as well be simply throwing your money away and kissing goodbye to any chance of success.
Thinking You Can Do Everything Alone
Not getting or accepting help and thinking you know everything might seem admirable, but in reality, it will lead to missed things, the ball being dropped, and mistakes being made. Business mentors exist to help new and emerging business owners navigate those first few years of operation. Their knowledge and experience can support you in making the right decisions, getting on the right track, and avoiding making some of the more common mistakes. If you don’t opt for assistance from a mentor, you can lean on business lawyers, peers, family, and friends to help you out when you need it, or you can hire experienced managers in your sector to get things rolling.
Not Finding Your Audience
It’s not good enough to cast your net and hope someone takes a bite. This strategy might have worked days gone by, but in modern times, you need to be aware of who your audience is, what they want, and how you fit into their journey. Take some time to do some research, identify your target audience, and learn more about their demographics, behavioral patterns, and competitors so you can get started with marketing and targeting from the beginning. You cannot guarantee to be successful if you neglect to do any research prior to launching.
If you want to avoid making mistakes that could jeopardize your career, then you need to make sure you are doing your research, following legal guidelines, and getting assistance where required to help you ensure that your new business is ready to go.
(Cover Image: Pexels)