It’s the spookiest time of year, so let’s talk about scary business mistakes and how to avoid them. Have you ever made a decision as an entrepreneur that, looking back on it, makes your skin crawl? Join the club! Part of being an entrepreneur is learning from the past—including those cringe-worthy mistakes that haunt your dreams … or, you know, just make you wish you’d had someone warn you so you didn’t need to learn a lesson the hard way.
We’re here to do just that. (We’re kind of like the exorcists to your poltergeists!) Let us share some mistakes our founder has personally made, plus some common mistakes made in business for good measure. Remember, mistakes in business are inevitable, but at the end of the day, a mistake is a lesson learned. It’s how you pivot after making a mistake that says the most about who you are as a person and a leader.
Beware: Scary sh*t ahead.
Here are five business mistakes that you do not need to make, because we already did. You’re welcome!
- Not firing someone. We get it—firing an employee can be a legit nightmare (on more than Elm Street!). But holding onto an underperforming employee for months and hoping things will get better is super cringy as well. It’s like a long, drawn-out torture session. You’re not doing you or your employee any favors. Instead, follow the motto hire slow, fire fast.
- Trying to please everyone always. People pleasers, we see you. But saying yes to everything is like digging your own grave. As explained by the wonderful Fran Hauser in a recent episode of Served NEAT, don’t say yes to something unless it aligns with your priorities and/or gives you joy. And when you say no, do it confidently and without unnecessary explanation.
- Listen to red flags. Taking on a client that oozes red flags is like giving a guy with a serial-killer vibe your phone number. Just don’t! Do a quick “gut check” before you sign a client. If it feels off, there’s probably a reason.
- Not setting boundaries. Once upon a time, our founder Jen answered emails at 10 PM and on weekends because she thought that’s what entrepreneurs had to do. If this is you too, beware. If you don’t set boundaries that protect your time off, it will lead to burn out. (Eeeeek!)
- Wanting to control everything. Perhaps what seems scariest to you as a business owner is letting go of control. Except what’s horror-film-level scary is realizing you have been holding your own business back by being unwilling to relinquish control.
Are you scared yet?
All Halloween puns aside, it can be daunting to face up to your business mistakes, and it can also be intimidating to make changes, even when you know you could be doing better. Try to see past mistakes as building blocks and current mistakes as growing pains. Mindset can make a world of difference when it comes to seeing business mistakes for what they are and then moving on. What mistakes would you add to our list?
If you want to avoid these business mistakes and more, book a call with us, and let’s talk strategy!