10 Things Successful Entrepreneurs Avoid Doing
You’ve probably found many places where you can get pointers on what you ought to do to become a successful entrepreneur. However, some of the best advice you can receive regards things you should avoid doing. Not taking particular actions or assuming certain attitudes can be very important in getting ahead.
Starting a business is inherently risky. And all of us who have ever done it have made mistakes. But making mistakes is part of learning and figuring out how business works, and, especially, how the industry that you’re involved in functions. Falling down and pulling yourself back up is to be expected under such circumstances. But you can control your general attitude and approach to being an entrepreneur. You can determine the kind of assumptions you make about yourself and your colleagues, as well as the habits you adopt in advancing your career.
Entrepreneur magazine lists the 10 things you should avoid doing in order to achieve your business goals. Here is one that really hit home with me:
If you make a bad decision and screw up, own it. If something doesn’t work out as planned, don’t look for excuses. Search for the cause of the problem and chalk it up to a valuable business lesson. If you identify and own the problem you will not make the same mistake again. If you are constantly making excuses for your mistakes, you will continue to make them because you haven’t properly identified the root of the problem.
This is sound advice. Owning up to a mistake—that is, coming right out and saying ‘I screwed up’—is one of the hardest things for anyone to do. No one likes to look like a fool in front of others. And that’s usually what it feels like when you mess up. However, the sooner you acknowledge the mistake the sooner you can get on with learning from it, and taking measures to prevent it from happening again.
Associating with negative individuals is another thing the piece recommends entrepreneurs avoid. And here again I wholeheartedly agree. You probably know such people. All is doom and darkness with them. You can make the most well-informed and articulate argument for why should take a particular action, and they’ll just assume, without a moment’s pause or reflection, that the scheme will fail. You should let such people alone and socialize with people who are more positive in their attitude and outlook. Not dreamers necessarily, but people who see possibilities rather than futility and failure.
Sometimes success is more about what you don’t do rather than what you do. Having a sense of both is the key to unlocking the treasures of entrepreneurship.
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About Christopher Reid Chris was born in Washington, D.C. and lives in Britain. He works as a blogger, essayist, and novelist. His first book, Tea with Maureen, has just been published.