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10 Reasons Small Businesses Fail

10 Reasons Small Businesses Fail

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 13, 2020

How Not to Feel Overwhelmed at Work & Take Control of Your Day

How Not to Feel Overwhelmed at Work & Take Control of Your Day

Overwhelm is a pernicious state largely caused by the ever-increasing demands on our time and the distractions that exist all around us. It creeps up on us and can, in its extreme form, leave us feeling anxious, stressed and exhausted.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed at work, here are 6 strategies you can follow that will reduce the feeling of overwhelm; leaving you calmer, in control and a lot less stressed.

1. Write Everything down to Offload Your Mind

The first thing you can do when you begin to feel overwhelmed is to write everything down that is on your mind.

Often people just write down all the things they think they have to do. This does help, but a more effective way to reduce overwhelm is to also write down everything that’s on your mind.

For example, you may have had an argument with your colleague or a loved one. If it’s on your mind write it down. A good way to do this is to draw a line down the middle of the page and title one section “things to do” and the other “what’s on my mind”.

The act of writing all this down and getting it out of your head will begin the process of removing your feeling of overwhelm. Writing things down can really change your life.

2. Decide How Long It Will Take to Complete Your To-Dos

Once you have ‘emptied your head,’ go through your list and estimate how long it will take to complete each to-do.

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As you go through your list, you will find quite a few to-dos will only take you five or ten minutes. Others will take longer, often up to several hours.

Do not worry about that at this stage. Just focus on estimating how long you will need to complete each task to the best of your ability. Here’s How to Cultivate a More Meaningful To Do List.

3. Take Advantage of Parkinson’s Law

Now here’s a little trick I learned a long time ago. Parkinson’s Law states that work will fill the time you have available to complete it, and us humans are terrible at estimating how long something will take:((Odhable: Genesis of Parkinson’s Law))

    This is why many people are always late. They think it will only take them thirty minutes to drive across town when previous experience has taught them it usually takes forty-five minutes to do so because traffic is often bad but they stick to the belief it will only take thirty minutes. It’s more wishful thinking than good judgment.

    We can use Parkinson’s Law to our advantage. If you have estimated that to write five emails that desperately need a reply to be ninety minutes, then reduce it down to one hour. Likewise, if you have estimated it will take you three hours to prepare your upcoming presentation, reduce it down to two hours.

    Reducing the time you estimate something will take gives you two advantages. The first is you get your work done quicker, obviously. The second is you put yourself under a little time pressure and in doing so you reduce the likelihood you will be distracted or allow yourself to procrastinate.

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    When we overestimate how long something will take, subconsciously our brains know we have plenty of time and so it plays tricks on us and we end up checking reviews of the Apple Watch 4 or allow our colleagues to interrupt us with the latest office gossip.

    Applying a little time pressure prevents this from happening and we get more focused and more work done.

    4. Use the Power of Your Calendar

    Once you have your time estimates done, open up your calendar and schedule your to-dos. Go through your to-dos and schedule time on your calendar for doing those tasks. Group tasks up into similar tasks.

    For emails that need attention on your to-do list, schedule time on your calendar to deal with all your emails at once. Likewise, if you have a report to write or a presentation to prepare, add these to your calendar using your estimated time as a guide for how long each will take.

    Seeing these items on your calendar eases your mind because you know you have allocated time to get them done and you no longer feel you have no time. Grouping similar tasks together keeps you in a focused state longer and it’s amazing how much work you get done when you do this.

    5. Make Decisions

    For those things you wrote down that are on your mind but are not tasks, make a decision about what you will do with each one. These things are on your mind because you have not made a decision about them.

    If you have an issue with a colleague, a friend or a loved one, take a little time to think about what would be the best way to resolve the problem. More often than not just talking with the person involved will clear the air and resolve the problem.

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    If it is a more serious issue, then decide how best to deal with it. Talk to your boss, a colleague and get advice.

    Whatever you do, do not allow it to fester. Ignoring the problem will not make it go away. You need to make a decision to deal with it and the sooner you do so the sooner the problem will be resolved. (You can take a look at this guide on How To Make Good Decisions All The Time.)

    I remember long ago, when I was in my early twenties and had gone mad with my newly acquired credit cards. I discovered I didn’t have the money to pay my monthly bills. I worried about it for days, got stressed and really didn’t know what to do. Eventually, I told a good friend of mine of the problem. He suggested I called the credit card company to explain my problem. The next day, I plucked up the courage to call the company, explained my problem and the wonderful person the other end listened and then suggested I paid a smaller amount for a couple of months.

    This one phone call took no more than ten minutes to make, yet it solved my problem and took away a lot of the stress I was feeling at the time. I learned two very valuable lessons from that experience:

    The first, don’t go mad with newly acquired credit cards! And the second, there’s always a solution to every problem if you just talk to the right person.

    6. Take Some Form of Action

    Because overwhelm is something that creeps up on us, once we feel overwhelmed (and stressed as the two often go together), the key is to take some form of action.

    The act of writing everything down that is bothering you and causing you to feel overwhelmed is a great place to start. Being able to see what it is that is bothering you in a list form, no matter how long that list is, eases the mind. You have externalized it.

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    It also means rather than these worries floating around in a jumbled mess inside your head, they are now visible and you can make decisions easier about what to do about them. Often it could be asking a colleague for a little help, or it could be you see you need to allocate some focused time to get the work done. The important thing is you make a decision on what to do next.

    Overwhelm is not always caused by a feeling of having a lack of time or too much work, it can also be caused by avoiding a decision about what to do next.

    The Bottom Line

    Make a decision, even if it is to just talk to someone about what to do next. Making a decision about how you will resolve something on its own will reduce your feelings of overwhelm and start you down the path to a resolution one way or another.

    When you follow these strategies to can say goodbye to your overwhelm and gain much more control over your day.

    More Tips for Reducing Work Stress

    Featured photo credit: Andrei Lazarev via unsplash.com

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