Many online entrepreneurs starting out (and sometimes experienced entrepreneurs as well), get an idea that they think is awesome and right away dive in looking for clients. Although enthusiasm is priceless, diving in blindly without having these fundamental pieces of your business in place, will only reward you with frustration and can ultimately kill your business before it gets off the ground.
So, let’s look at the fundamental don’ts that you need to avoid if you want a successful online business.
1. Not having a Clear Vision.
Steven Covey says, “Start with the end in mind.” If you don’t see the end or the big picture of what your business is all about, then you have nothing to measure your progress against. You have nothing to check if what you are doing is aligned with your dream.
It’s like your dream is just floating in the air with nothing to ground it. If it is not written down in specific terms, then it’s like Joel A. Barker said, “Vision without action is daydreaming. Action without vision is just passing the time. Vision with action can change the world.”
2. Not having a Clear Niche
Without clarity of what you are all about, whom you would like to work with, what their problem is, how you help them and what your tangible result is, will keep you spinning your wheels.
This is because the language you use in your communication will fall on deaf ears. Nobody will hear you. It is absolutely true that if you think you can help everybody, you will help nobody.
If you niche is unclear, your brand will be unclear as well as your vision and this snowball effect can kill your business.
It’s not to say that where you start you will end, but you have to start somewhere solid and specific. The more narrow your niche, the better. There are indeed riches in niches.
3. Not having a Clear Plan
Without a clear plan, you don’t have a roadmap to manifest your vision. Now although your vision is specific in terms of the money you wish you make, the number of clients you wish to serve, etc., this is still a big picture.
You need to chunk your vision that is your “what” down to “how” you are going to achieve it. A clear plan makes your life easy, because it eliminates procrastination.
Procrastination is something we all experience when we don’t have a proper plan, because we then leave everything to the last minute and scramble to get it done. This of course is dangerous, because inevitably things fall through the cracks, important things that would have made the difference between failure and success.
4. Not Following Through
It’s one thing having a plan and it’s another thing following that plan and execute it.
Here is where many entrepreneurs sabotage themselves and thereby sabotage their business.
They fear making a mistake, hanging on to the illusion of perfectionism. The irony is that it is in making mistakes that we learn and move towards perfection or rather effectiveness.
This is all about managing your Inner Game on which I will expand further below.
5. Not Measuring Results
As the saying goes, feedback is the breakfast of champions. If you don’t measure the results you get from taking action in your business, then you continuously shoot in the dark and hope something sticks.
Not measuring results will not only withheld the insight on what to avoid, but also the gems of what your audience loves and want more of.
Many entrepreneurs shy away from facing feedback, because of fear of failure and it so important to frame undesirable results as only feedback, and to grow your business on the principle that there is no failure, only feedback.
6. Not Being Flexible to Making Changes
The reason we get feedback is that it allows us to proactively make changes where necessary.
However, thinking in polarities of black or white, success or failure, good or bad, etc., robs us from the myriad of gray areas and choices in between.
Seeing these polarities rather as an continuum, invites flexibility thinking and awareness of the different options in between them, because every place on the continuum contains both parts and that empowers you to look at anything from different perspectives.
7. Not managing your Inner Game
Your brain the most important piece of equipment you have in your business. Your inner game comprises of your beliefs, intentions, meanings, about yourself, people, things and of course your business.
Not having belief and faith in yourself, your capabilities, your vision, your gifts, is like a death sentence to your business, as you will continuously sabotage your best efforts.
Referring back to all the don’ts that I discussed above, not managing your inner game is the most important don’t that you need to pay attention to. Fortunately this is easy and doable with the help of a coach.
Now that we have looked at all the don’ts, the question is what does the opposite of them look like in your business.
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