“If they don’t fail outright, most businesses fail to fully achieve their potential. That’s because the person who owns the business doesn’t truly know how to build a company that works without him or her…which is the key.”—Michael Gerber
Is your business consuming your life? We have identified the six entrepreneur traps that can keep you from having the business and the life you dreamed of. Which of these traps are hidden in your business?
Trap #1: Lack of Vision
Do you know where your business is headed?
Most entrepreneurs end up owning a great job rather than a great business. Though entrepreneurs can see opportunities all around them, mapping out the critical steps to success is harder to do.
“Blind spots” are everywhere, and when you are moving fast it’s easy to get lost and overwhelmed.
- Are you clear on your ultimate goal, but unable to take the next steps?
- Would your company be more successful if you had a written plan for marketing, sales or operations?
Trap #2: Delegation Paralysis
How much can I delegate?
Competent people always struggle to let go of the tasks they do well because they feel no one else can do it as well as they do.
Half of an entrepreneur’s time is spent doing something someone else could do, but the simple tasks take too little of their time to bother delegating and the complicated tasks require too much intuition and training to be handed off.
- Are your employees as productive as they could be?
- Are there tasks that you are currently doing that should be done by someone else?
Trap #3: Osmosis Leadership
Can I lead more effectively?
As the boss, most entrepreneurs have developed excellent reactive skills to handle the tough issues, but leaders provide proactive insight to solve problems before they begin.
Though many talk of the roles of the CEO, CFO or COO within the organization, few understand the real impact these positions can have in propelling the company to the next level.
- Are you unclear on how to develop an executive team?
- Do the responsibilities of the CEO, CFO, CMO or COO seem unclear or overwhelming?
Trap #4: Marketing Infatuation
Can marketing help my business?
Marketing materials and advertising are often invested in without a clear plan. Every entrepreneur hopes that the marketing material will automatically sell the client.
Not enough time is spent developing the sales script or process and salespeople and employees are usually left to their own intuition.
- Are your salespeople struggling to generate new customers?
- Are you generating all the business your company can handle?
Trap #5: Financial Impotence
How can clear financials help my business?
Gut and intuition are not a replacement for a strong understanding of financial ratios. Few business owners understand how to use financial reports such as income statements and balance sheets to strategically lead their business.
- Are your financial statements up to date and accurate?
- Are you able to discover strategic opportunities using your financial reports?
Trap #6: Implementation Breakdown
How do I implement a new idea?
Though meetings and action lists are common in most businesses, the projects are rarely broken into manageable tasks.
Entrepreneurs are poor at following up with employees. Employees will wait for tasks to be clarified. Technology often remains underutilized or even unused.
- Are employees often found waiting for clarification on projects and tasks?
- Are projects and tasks completed in a timely manner or does every meeting seem to be a repeat of the last? iBi
Entrepreneur Advisors provides strategies for entrepreneurs to help grow their businesses in the critical areas of marketing and sales, operations and finance. For more information, visit entadvisors.com.