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Avoiding Startup Mistakes

Going from “startup” to “successful business” is a dream of every entrepreneur. Unfortunately, navigating the bumpy landscape of the business startup world can be difficult and fraught with mistakes. The harsh reality is that most startups have only a 50% chance of suceeding in the first five years. Without the right information and action regarding financing, marketing, customer service, human resources (and the list goes on and on), startups can stumble and even fall due to some common mistakes. Let’s examine the most common mistakes that new businesses make.

  • Lack of Focus– When first starting a new company it is easy to get distracted by all the work that needs to be done. Pivoting from one area to another can be a huge problem for startups that need to focus on core values. New owners need to prioritize and seek development guidance from business mentors, coaches or even a consulting company that can help your business get going in the right direction.
  • Financing  Headaches– Remember that old adage that “You need to spend money to make money.” Well this has a ring of truth in that every business needs solid financial advising including a plan for: marketing, hiring, pricing of goods, and of course, physical maintenance of your brick and mortar office. Be sure to have all of your ducks in a row before you begin any business venture. This should include researching all forms of financing from self financing to taking on investors.
  • Hiring Poorly– Startup employees need to be versatile and able to wear many hats depending upon the work that needs to get done. In fact, many times the work goes beyond the job description. If owners don’t manage this expectation upon hiring, there could be employee issues six months down the line.
  • Not Listening to Customers– Believe it or not startups can sometimes forget that the customer is the most important part of the business equation. Customers can teach new owners quite a bit about what they are doing right and what they are doing wrong.  Listen to those customers by becoming involved with them at each step of the process no matter what the product or service is that you are marketing.

About Mike Sperling

Mike is the Founder and Director of Sperling Interactive. Mike’s keen eye for photography, extensive technology skills and innovative marketing ideas make Mike a leader in the website design and management field. He is proficient in html, css, php, javascript, MySQL and the Adobe Design Suite. Before founding Sperling Interactive, Mike worked his way up from staff photographer at the Eagle Tribune Publishing Company to the lead operator and manager of multiple websites for daily and weekly publications. Known as the “media guru”, Mike gathered years of experience before making the leap to start his own business. He graduated from Rochester Institute of Technology with a BFA in Photojournalism and a minor in Mass Communications. When Mike is not meeting with clients or designing new websites he enjoys spending time with his wife, Jodi, daughter Zoey, and son Camden. Mike enjoys hiking, geocaching, traveling, movies, the Baltimore Orioles & Ravens.