Over 600,000 companies go out of business every year in the U.S. alone. Infant Entrepreneur Mortality is a massive problem. Here are 10 avoidable mistakes first-time entrepreneurs make repeatedly.
1. Defining success = funding
2. Do not know the essential techniques of bootstrapping
3. Don't understand positioning
4. Spend money on unimportant things and run out of cash
5. Hire too many people too soon without validating
6. Start building a product without validating
7. Chase investors instead of customers
8. Network randomly, without focus
9. Talk to investors too soon, and blow important cartridges
10. Don't focus on the business model and path to monetization
Avoid them at all costs. You cannot succeed without first surviving. I've never met an entrepreneur who has built a billion-dollar business without first building a million-dollar one! Do your homework to calibrate your business the way investors would. Whether or not you are raising money, think of yourself as an investor in your own business, and test yourself against these issues.
Do not waste money getting fancy officespace and furniture. Entrepreneurship = (Customers + Revenues + Profits). Financing is optional. Exit is optional. Success is a sustainable profitable business that meets customer needs