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10 Reasons Small Businesses Fail

10 Reasons Small Businesses Fail
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There are times businesses fail, and even when you feel you have done everything right, things go wrong. The odds of a business achieving success are low; that is why it is important to pay attention to every detail required to run a business. If you can stay clear of the mistakes of business owners discussed below, your business is far more likely to be around for a long time.

“There are no disasters in business that you can’t avoid if you see them coming and make the adjustments.” –Boune T. Pickens. Jr.

1. They lack focus

There should be a clear objective regarding the direction a business is going and where it should be within a proposed timeframe. Many fail to understand this concept and pursue several objectives at once. It is better to have a core vision and steer your employees in that direction.

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2. They make poor decisions

Businesses succeed because of smart decisions. It is important to avoid poor decisions if you want your business to last and make money. It is better to get as much information and review it meticulously than to make hasty judgements based on too little data. Perhaps you should try to draw up worst case scenarios and discuss them with your advisory team before taking any action.

3. They lack the ability to adapt to changes

Change is constant, and we live in a technological age where change happens every second. To survive as a business, you have to constantly adapt and improve your strengths to meet with the demands before you. You can’t be stagnant and expect success.

4. They maintain poor leadership

Every successful business needs the right leadership to continually challenge its people to step out of their comfort zones and seek answers. You can be kind and compassionate, but that won’t yield results if you do not challenge your people.

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5. They have fierce competition

Competition is a certainty in business. But sometimes, competition can be so fierce that you are forced to shut down your business. Competition shouldn’t create fear, but should challenge you to get better and stand out from the crowd.

6. They stay in the wrong location

Location is pivotal to how far a business can go. You cannot be located close to a fierce competitor and expect to succeed. When choosing a location, it is better to make sure it is going to work towards your advantage. Consider the road network, accessibility, proximity to your clients, population, and demographics.

7. They lack the required skills

For your business to succeed, you have to have the right employees who are skilled and can help execute the mission of the company. According to Warren Buffet, “Risk comes from not knowing what you are doing.” To be successful in your business, you need the right experience and knowledge to make the business sustainable.

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8. They delegate duties poorly

Money is always tight during the start-up stage. It is better to outsource or delegate duties to the right personnel. Rather than being a “do it all” kind of boss, you should focus on your strengths and delegate other duties to professionals that can execute them appropriately and maximize the output of your business.

9. They lack sufficient capital

There is a reason why business owners seek funding from investors and venture capitalists. Money and cash flow is the life blood of every business. No matter how great your business idea or product may be, without the capital and profitability of the business, you won’t be able to take your business to the next level and attain success.

10. They don’t have enough credit

Another reason businesses fail is because money for its services or products is not promptly payed by customers. You do not need bad debts when running a business. Cash flow is important to running a business; making sure your customers are loyal and consistent in paying you is advantageous to the long term success of your business.

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Featured photo credit: http://www.flickr.com via flickr.com

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Casey Imafidon

Specialized in motivation and personal growth, providing advice to make readers fulfilled and spurred on to achieve all that they desire in life.

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Last Updated on July 21, 2021

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

How to Make a Reminder Works for You

Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

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Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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Reference

[1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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