When entrepreneurs come up with an idea for a business it’s an exciting time. They’re fired up and they want to share their vision with the world. At this time, it’s vital to take some deep breaths and do some planning. You don’t want to make any easily avoidable mistakes.
With this in mind, we’ve listed 5 start-up mistakes to avoid.
A lack of money is the number one reason new businesses fail. This is a massive shame, as entrepreneurs based in British Columbia have several options available to assist with start-up financing.
- Vancity Microfinance Program
- Futurpreneur (if under 39 years of age)
- Women’s Enterprise Centre
- Community Futures
A lot of entrepreneurs also receive start-up assistance from family and friends or angel investors.
No Business Plan
Whether you write a business plan or a business map, the importance of a strategic plan for your business cannot be overstated. Great businesses don’t happen by accident. They’re the result of painstaking planning and a keen understanding of every aspect of the operation. A business plan is the key to unlocking success and will need to be demonstrated to secure financing from most providers. Need help putting a business plan together? Small Business BC is happy to offer Business Plan Consulting and Reviewing as a service.
Not Planning for Lean Periods
Even our best laid plans have the potential to go awry. What’s your contingency for coping with lean periods in the life of your business? To create lasting success, a business needs to be nimble in its approach and have a robust contingency plan to turn to. Consider opening a line of credit from a financial institution. Chances are, you won’t ever need to use it but it’s always nice to know you have a fallback position for slow periods.
Build a Support Network
Your business is your baby. Understandably, you’ll want to do everything yourself. Even if you aren’t ready to hire staff, having an accountant, lawyer or mentor to turn to for advice is worth its weight in gold. A mentor is an invaluable addition to your support network for a variety of reasons. Here are some of the most important ones.
No. Everyone isn’t Your Target Market
To quote Small Business BC’s International Trade Advisor, Laura Aveledo:
“Many of my clients say that ‘everybody’ is their target market. That statement is one of the most common mistakes new entrepreneurs make. Sticking to that thought will only lead failed advertising, frustration and a botched product launch. The reality is that no product, no matter how popular or useful, will be liked by everybody.”
Your product is destined to fail unless you hone in on the specific target market you want to speak to. We’ve put together some tips on how to identify these potential clients.