With the exponential successes and admiration of business owners like Warren Buffet, Elon Musk, and Bill Gates, the field of entrepreneurship has seen a significant influx. Millennials and Gen-Z are fond of entrepreneurship because of these larger-than-life successes. However, the grass is not as greener as it seems. Entrepreneurship is not that easy and requires diligence, hard work, and efforts which are usually not posted on social media. There is a lot more than a fancy idea, and the implementation is challenging and full of various obstacles. People usually commit to becoming an entrepreneur without attaining certain mindsets, skillsets, and training.
Starting a venture and executing it has numerous running parts. There are many elements in running a business venture, from the initial product idea to its development to operational responsibilities. Therefore, any thriving entrepreneur must plan a business venture with more than just a whim of motivation or attention to detail. A business venture’s ideal planning is harder to achieve, and it might fall into certain traps or commit multiple mistakes. However, let’s look at some of the pitfalls to avoid while planning for a business venture.
1. Not Testing the Idea
Having a mere idea is not enough. Usually, entrepreneurs fall into their idea trap and ultimately miss out on the viability and execution. Instead of testing the usability, market interest, commercial viability, they move toward full-fledged implementation and sooner or later realize that it wasn’t worth it. A seasoned entrepreneur needs to have an eye for execution that comes with experience, failures, and knowledge of multiple insights and related analytics. Experience and awareness come with time. However, understanding market insights and relevant analytics are attainable through books and apprenticeships. But a viable approach is enrolling in degree programs like online masters in analytics that provide proper analytical skills enhancement. Therefore, testing the idea before setting up the operations can save a lot of time, effort, attention, and resources.
2. Research about the Market and Existing Industry
Once we figure out that the idea has some substance, it is crucial to study the existing market, competition, and industry. Many entrepreneurs fail to comprehend the market’s existing landscape at the whim of “We will disrupt everything” or “We are the best.” There can be big data, projections, research, case studies, etc., available in almost every industry. Researching and getting a hands-on understanding of such data can provide a meaningful and competitive edge to the entrepreneur over competitors. However, it is understandable that such rigorous research requires specific data handling and managing skills. Data mining and data analysis skills can be acquired, or you can hire a data scientist or data analyst for a short project. They have immense experience and expertise in handling, managing, modifying data, and providing insights. It explains why a data science master’s salary is high because their skills and expertise are inimitable.
3. Starting without a business plan
Entrepreneurship is different than employment in many ways. One of them is that in your venture, you can’t afford to jumpstart without a plan. Many entrepreneurs fail to craft a business plan for times ahead and react to the wind of market changes or competitors’ actions. To be proactive and above the game, it is essential to jot down a business plan. These plans typically include product strategies, business models, financial models, go-to marketing strategy, etc. Similarly, failure to act upon the plan is another usual pitfall for entrepreneurs.
4. Wrong Team, Hiring in a Hurry
Some entrepreneurs work on every front by themselves, whereas some prefer outsourcing as much as they can. Both notions have their downside, but getting the wrong team can be more dangerous than feeling burnt out due to overwork. According to some startup coaches, hiring the right people for the job is almost half the startup founder’s job. Apart from focusing on the proper skill set, it is crucial to hire people with the right attitude and align with the business’s values.
5. Unrealistic Financial Projections
It is common for new entrepreneurs to overstate the financial value and potential of their businesses. Financial projections are one of the fundamental aspects of any business. They dictate the budgets, product pricing, salaries, and many necessary expenses and revenues. Also, investors and lenders always seek financial projections first if asked for funding. Therefore, it is crucial to maintain realistic financial projections and meet financial targets accordingly.
6. Lesser Efforts on the Outreach and Marketing
No matter how unique your product is, how groundbreaking your technology is, if potential customers don’t know about it, it will catch dust on the shelves only. Many entrepreneurs believe that if their product is good, it will eventually reach the customer. This belief has some substance but simply eliminating the marketing is not a healthy solution too. Usually, new businesses don’t have hefty budgets to spend on; therefore, they tend to save costs. But in recent times, especially with digital marketing, you can get massive traction and reach if done right. Undeniably, marketing is an investment and not an expense that provides unprecedented returns.
Entrepreneurship is not a hit and miss, but a rigorous battle to conquer, sometimes in the business operations and sometimes with the competitor. Staying on toes and remaining steadfast is the key to success. However, achieving success in entrepreneurial ventures is not simple and easy. It requires trial and error, experience and failure, and persistent efforts to attain your entrepreneurial goals and objectives.