Making the worst mistakes is part of it. However, there are mistakes that are unnecessary and can have negative effects at the same time. Below are the ten worst ‘sins’ of an entrepreneur and how to avoid them.
- Sitting in The Car All-day
Spend as little time as possible on the road and plan your time as efficiently as possible. Multiple appointments at short notice? Preferably plan this on the same day and/or location so that you save extra travel time and can spend this on your real services. Avoid traffic jams and plan your appointments just outside the traffic jams. Also saves time.
- Cold Acquisition Without Preparation
So cold calling without any conversation preparation. That is a pointless and therefore time-consuming operation. The essence of cold calling is that you are very well prepared for the conversation and that you have collected all information about the customer and his business well in advance. With that factual substantiation, you immediately gain all the trust of the customer and that is what it is all about!
- Failure of Proper Follow-up
Always try to check whether you can offer your customers, even more, service and extras than you already offer. For example, send them an e-mail or make sure they join your newsletter to show them what the latest developments are and which new services you are going to put on the market, which may also have added value for your customer. Sometimes circumstances at the customer change and if you know how to respond to this, you will be able to get more turnover from your current network. So always give that bit of ‘extra’ that the customer does not expect.
- Painful Presentations
Presentations can have added value, but only a few presentations can withstand the test of criticism. Doing good presentations is real craftsmanship and if you’re not a star at it, don’t spend too much time on it. Every time you have made a presentation, you should ask yourself: what has my story actually added to the image the customer has about me or about my services? If you don’t have enough knowledge, pretend to be different than you are and don’t come across as authentic, this will immediately break you up and damage your reputation. So always stay with yourself.
- Go Beyond The Person of Your Prospect
Everyone has their own personality that requires confirmation. The same goes for your potential customers. Try to find out what kind of person he or she is. Is he curious, interested, suspicious, hesitant, etc. and adjust your story accordingly? Each person is sensitive to different arguments. You can’t play the same talk for every customer, then you slip past his personality and don’t ‘touch’ him. The trick is to develop exactly the right attitude towards the different characters and qualities. That requires training, insight, and empathy.
- Losing Grip On Time
Before you start a conversation, it is best to have the objective of the conversation clear in advance (what do I want to achieve with this conversation) and set a time limit here. This prevents you from having a nice and helpful conversation, but without result, because you stay too long in the exploration phase or “I promote myself” phase. Is it an informational conversation, an informational conversation, a sales conversation, or a needy conversation? If you have your objectives clear, this also creates clarity for your conversation partner and he or she will not get the feeling that you are pushing him or her to do something unless these are your intentions of course.
- Insufficient Use of References Recommendations
References from satisfied customers are very important tools for you as an entrepreneur! In practice, this is still too little used. Please note: every satisfied customer, with his story, is a bridge to another new satisfied customer. For example, is your customer on LinkedIn? Then ask for a recommendation, because that will increase your prestige and trust. Good references also contribute more quickly to new customers.
- Fear of Rejection
At the end of a conversation, it is about asking the closing question or cost estimate at a logical time, not too early and not too late. Understandably, many entrepreneurs dread this moment. After all, then it must happen. Do not start talking about the price until you have shown your added value on all fronts. The more convincingly you can present yourself and your services, the less the price matters. Work hard on your personal branding, so that you can also ask for more and more money because brand awareness sells. In some cases, you do not have to state a price, but after the meeting, you draw up a quotation, in which you make clear how the price is determined, the work you provide for this, and the added value you offer. It is precisely the latter that can be decisive.
- You Don’t Know The Customer Enough And Vice Versa
You know why your service or product is special and you can talk about its specific benefits. But if you don’t really immerse yourself in your customer, you won’t know where his needs lie or deep-seated wishes. So let your customer talk and pick up on possible problems or stumbling blocks he mentions and, where possible, link this to a service you provide or a problem you can solve. So talk to the customer and do not continuously reason from yourself. First, get to know the customer well, and then you will sooner get the fun factor.
- The Lack of The Right Attitude
With the right attitude, energy, and ambition, almost anyone can acquire the skills necessary to become a good entrepreneur. Almost everyone. If you do not have the passion, drive, perseverance, vision, and independence, you will not make it. It is not without reason that many new companies appear every year, but so many also go under. This can have various causes, but good entrepreneurship demands something from you. Especially now with the crisis, the creative thinking ability requires you to re-examine your organization and see what the market is doing and how you can respond to this. Change in an economy that is not predictable, but requires alertness and continuous action from you.