While startup mistakes are expected, you can take measures to avoid the greatest pitfalls by avoiding the most common mishaps. Here are 5 mistakes you can avoid, while still learning the critical lesson in each:
1. Not researching the market before entry. Not even your enthusiasm can make up for a lack of research regarding your prospective practice and its intended market. Before launching your business full-time, do a little research to ensure your intended niche can sustain your practice. If you plan to service small businesses, your “research” can include a drive down your main street, or you can thumb through the yellow pages of your local phone book. How many small, local businesses can you find? Consider that these don’t even include the countless entrepreneurs working from their homes. This potential client base is huge and continues to grow every year.
2. Focusing on a narrow niche. It’s always good to specialize—be it restaurants, construction companies, retailers, etc.; it can help your business to have an industry-specific focus. However, if you narrow your focus too much, you may eliminate many prospective clients. We suggest you focus on small business and then, perhaps select a specialty within that venue. That should keep your niche wide enough to attract the clients you need sustain your business.
3. Chase every opportunity. The converse is also true; chasing every opportunity can broaden your focus too much. In a recent Entrepreneur.com article, author Lewis Howes explains, “Chasing profits and building a long-term profit model are two different things. Entrepreneurs typically have an instinct for smelling opportunity, but that same killer instinct can quickly turn to weakness when it becomes a distraction from primary goals.” This makes it crucial for you to clearly define your service offerings and your potential client base before moving forward.
4. Launching too slowly. There’s a risk in launching too quickly (for example, without having done the necessary research), but the risk for launching too slowly is even more common. Once you’ve done the necessary research, have developed your vision and business goals and have determined the best time to enter the market, you should move forward with your undivided attention and energy. Doing so will ensure your business the greatest likelihood of success.
5 Burning out. Job burnout can happen to even the most well-intentioned professionals. It often occurs to entrepreneurs when they become overburdened and overwhelmed. Howe suggests, “This is probably one you won’t be able to avoid… If handled right, burning out can actually transform you into a superhero—just a different one. You’re just one person and there are only so many hours in a day. Determine which tasks are better handled by others, delegate or outsource those tasks and keep track of the results.”
As you pursue your dream of owning and operating your own accounting practice, you can avoid failure by avoiding common startup mistakes.
Market Those Skills
Unfortunately some financial professionals struggle—not because they cannot perform the required tasks—because promoting their business and securing clients is somewhat intimidating.
In order for your practice to thrive, you must break through that barrier, learning and using effective marketing strategies to target those small businesses owners most likely to retain their services. But how do you do that?
The Universal Practice Builder Program is designed to help financial professionals learn the art and science of getting and keeping clients. This online program will teach you 12-proven marketing techniques that will help you secure 15 to 25 qualified leads per month. Not only that, but you will hone your presentation skills and be trained in organizing valuable seminars through which you can retain even more clients. You’ll also have 3 months of free master coaching where UAC professionals will help you set and achieve your business goals.
Call Universal at 1-877-833-7909 to enroll in this program now, and ensure the likelihood that your startup will succeed!
Lewis, Howes. “Critical Lessons from 5 Common Startup Mistakes.” 6 February 2013 Entrepreneur.com