How To Avoid These Top 8 Business Mistakes

Over 6 years on the path to entrepreneurial success I have realized that money is the root of all your dreams, and not evil.

Avoid These Business Mistakes

Most of these mistakes have to do with the day-to-day running of business in general. We all know how to do what we do. The trick is to make it into a stream of income.

I’ve made a few of these business mistakes and I can only hope that my sharing might help you avoid some of these yourself:

1. Forgetting to bill the client – this sounds extremely improbable, but before my accounting system was in place it happened ALL the time.

2. Losing track of unpaid invoices – of course if you don’t have a decent estimating or billing process, this is an easy one to let slide.

3. Setting bill rate too low/Discounting services – after several years of estimating, I am getting really good at charging a fair project rate. What I am really bad at is after the fact by eating overages on the project when they come up. My bookkeeper is attempting to break me of this habit.

4. Not setting aside money for taxes – is it me, or do these dates sneak up? They do come on a regular scheduled basis, and keeping a pile ready makes it so much easier to deal with.

5. Bad contract negotiations/terms – I learned quickly that no terms = no project. I would love to do business on a handshake, but it is much better for both parties to have a complete understanding of what each party will provide.

6. Dependent on a single client – I haven’t had this issue, but know several independent business owners who have been slammed by a sudden budget cut by their primary client. Hearing the infamous “we are taking this in-house” makes you hit the pavement quick to drum up new clients.

7. Delaying bad news – no one likes to be the bearer of bad news. Being the bad guy every once in a while, and allowing you to be the scape-goat can keep long term client relationships happy.

8. Ignoring referrals – as an involved member of a business networking group, I found this to be a quick way to kill your professionalism. Call referrals, follow-up and make it OK for them to say NO. It may be a yes in the future.

We are all human, and we all make business mistakes.

Unfortunately, doing business and keeping a professional image means fewer mistakes are better. And if you aren’t sure what that weakness is in your business, ask your clients. They know better than anyone.

Fess up… which of the above mistakes in business have you made?

Heather

Heather’s dream is to have multiple streams of income, starting with launching an e-commerce website that showcases her couture jewelry, which are crafted by her. You can find Heather online at For Your Adornment and Twitter And Beyond Dot Com. She also teaches Social Media tactics for business, besides being CEO of her own web design company. Heather’s post day is Friday.

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Heather’s dream is to share with the world her success at becoming healthy after age 40. Heather lost over 88 pounds through changing her diet and incorporating exercise into her busy life. She would like to take what she has learned about becoming fit after 40, and using her Metabolic Training Certification to help others struggling with weight issues mid-life. Heather’s post day is Monday.
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  • If we’d only get out of our own way! lol

    Being self-employed is not for the faint of heart. It takes a real commitment and some good capital so you can hire out the things you don’t like to do, or are not good at.

    And you are not alone –

    Lessons Learned From Failed Online Businesses @ http://www.startupfreedom.com/lessons-learned-from-failed-online-businesses

    Why Businesses Succeed and Fail @
    http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/217843
    “Failed entrepreneurs are more likely to get funding than successful entrepreneurs from the same VC firm.”

    How Small Companies Get in Trouble @ http://boss.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/03/30/why-companies-fail

    oh and Neil Patel?

    Neil Patel is the co-founder of 2 Internet companies: Crazy Egg and KISSmetrics. Through his entrepreneurial career Neil has helped large corporations such as Amazon, AOL, GM, HP and Viacom make more money from the web. By the age of 21 not only was Neil named a top 100 blogger by Technorati, but he was also one of the top influencers on the web according to the Wall Street Journal.

    His take: 7 Reasons My First Business Failed @ http://www.quicksprout.com/2009/01/25/7-reasons-my-first-business-failed

    It seems most everyone has been there . . .

    Cath

  • Remy Gervais, Top Photographer

    3, 6, 7 and 8. And its funny, all of the resistance to these things are ’emotional’ resistance not logic. Its the pit in your stomach before calling the client to ask for the referral. Its waiting till I”m in a ‘better space” to deal with the bad news. Its dealing with the impostor syndrome rate table and the insecurity of setting prices. I get ya. Thank you for this! And please call me if you need me. xo Rem