In 2020, there were over 120,000 startups in Europe alone. Startups are the new-wave version of the entrepreneur, especially in the tech industry. Innovative startups have the potential to break through any industry and make waves of change.
Unfortunately, much like their traditional business counterparts, many startups don’t end up making it past the first few years. This generally comes about as a result of certain common mistakes a start-up may not think of having.
Thinking of launching a start-up? Here are 5 common mistakes an entrepreneur may make when embarking on the start-up scene.
1. Being Afraid of Failure
Yes, failure is inevitable. At some point along your startup journey, you will fail. Something won’t go right, and you will feel like the world is falling apart around you. However, just because you fail doesn’t mean you quit.
Failure teaches you a valuable lesson. Being afraid of it is natural and everyone goes through it at some point or another. However, stop avoiding small failures at all costs! Failing at something is the beginning of wisdom while quitting is the end of your dream.
When things go right, enjoy them, but don’t throw in the towel when things go wrong. Instead, take every failure as a chance to better yourself, gain experience, and do it better the next time around.
2. Free Exposure Isn’t Everything
Breaking into the market forcefully is ideal but you don’t have to give everything away to another entity who wants to offer free exposure to you. Giving away your product for free or at a reduced price may simply make you run out of money quick.
Know your worth! Free exposure does indeed help sometimes but it isn’t everything. No matter how new to the scene you may be, if you’re good at what you do then charge it. Come out as a well-researched and qualified expert in your startup’s field, not a newbie that is perhaps too thankful for any table scraps, regardless of how unfulfilling they are.
3. Not Sticking to The Business Plan
First, create a business plan. Second, stick to it. Of course, you might learn from your mistakes and amend that plan every once and a while. Yet, amendments still shouldn’t take you away from your business plan. You created this startup for a reason. Make sure that you continue to defend that reason as your startup continues to grow.
4. Not Making Contracts
Stay legal and stay secure. Contracts and thorough documentation are your best friends in your start-up journey. Whenever you are working with anyone through your start-up, you always want to have a contract. It doesn’t matter if they are family, friends, or total strangers. You still want to have the terms of your agreement written down and agreed to by both parties.
5. Underestimating the Workload
Building a startup is hard work. Many people think that being their own boss makes their lives easier. In reality, creating a startup means a lot of long nights, hard decisions, and constant stress.
If your heart is truly in the cause, you will be fine. However don’t make the mistake of diving into the startup world just to escape the nine-to-five - you’ll be begging to go back in a matter of weeks.