Running a Successful Business is a very demanding adventure. It takes a lot of planning and focus. So many people have plans for their business and goals they hope to achieve, but not all of those goals become realities. At the slightest mistake a business can suddenly collapse and everything you’ve worked so hard to achieve, jeopardized.
So many people give up during those challenging times, but if you persevere long enough, you’ll find out that every mistake bring with them valuable lessons that can make you stronger and even more focused as long as you do not repeat them.
Here are four things you should always repeat as an entrepreneur.
1. They always set boundaries
Most Entrepreneurs do not set boundaries for their customers. Those that do fail to enforce them. This mistake alone can gradually push you out of business. Enforcing boundaries is never an easy thing to do especially if your customer is involved. We live in a world where business men and women put their customers on a pedestal.
Entrepreneurs have learnt that the Customer is the BOSS. This is why they feel tempted to indulge unreasonable customer demands. Customers are truly the Boss, but that should be within the boundary you have set for them.
If you are unwilling to say “NO”, especially to your customers, the control you have over your business will be threatened. You’ll lose your focus by trying to please every customer and making all their problems yours.
When setting these boundaries, you have to be diplomatic. You have to be able to assert your authority without being disrespectful. Create a set of policies for your business and stick to them. Whether you like it or not, people will disagree and there will a little conflict here and there, but in every case, endeavor to make them understand why a rule exists. Be honest about the extent to which you’re willing to accommodate them. Walk away if they’re still unsatisfied. It is sometimes better to suffer a short-term loss in order to avoid a greater loss in the future.
2. They are Realistically Optimistic
It is not enough to be optimistic alone. It is also important to be realistic. Entrepreneurs are naturally optimistic, and that’s a good attribute, but this tendency to be optimistic can result in unrealistic time bound goals. Even though we’ve done a task a thousand times before, we still underestimate the amount of time and resources it takes to complete it. For every task, you will probably spend twice the resources you budgeted. And this can stop us from organizing our days efficiently and setting realistic deadlines.
You should always have it at the back of your mind that even routine tasks contain hidden surprises. And that is why you need to manage your time in a way that creates realistic expectations and leaves room for unexpected challenges.
3. They Delegate Responsibilities
Many entrepreneurs are control freaks and terrible at delegating work. They lack trust in other people’s abilities, or they think that they’re the best person for the job — and that might be true. But as a business grows, there comes a point where the workload becomes too much for one person to handle. During this stage, your most important task as a leader is teaching your team how to think and ask questions for themselves.
If you have a qualified team, you shouldn’t be complaining about how much work you have to get done daily. Even if you’re the greatest hardworker, there are more important things you need to spend your time doing rather than wasting hours trying to do everything yourself when there are capable people who could do it for you.
If you keep on trying to do everything yourself and never delegate tasks, your business will become stagnant while you carry unneccesary stress on your shoulders.
4. They Never see Competitors as Oppositions
Competitors are very useful resources for every Entrepreneur. Without competitors, you won’t be able to keep up with new trends in your industry. However, those competitors are not your oppositions. If you spend all your resources in trying to beat them, you’ll lose sight of what matters in your business. Now, that doesn’t mean you should totally ignore what others are doing or not try to get ideas from competitors in your industry, but you shouldn’t become unnecessarily obsessed about constantly getting ahead of them. If you do this, you will be setting yourself up as an adversary.
Instead, spend your time identifying what problems you need to solve for your customers. Develop products and services that they love using, and create experiences that they keep coming back for. If you keep improving your products, logistics and company culture, you’ll become a leader in your industry without creating any enmity with your competitors.
Mistakes are an unavoidable part of life. But they can cause considerable damage if you don’t change the behavior that causes them to re-occur. Learn from your shortcomings, understand your weaknesses, and dedicate yourself to constant improvement. It’s the only way you’ll solve your problems for good and attain the determination you need to reach your goals.