Every business, no matter how big or small, comes with its own set of considerations. From management to finances, employees to inventory, there are many things to worry about on a daily basis.
That’s why you don’t want to gamble your chance for success on the smallest possible pitfall. Every year, thousands of new businesses fail because of tiny missteps that could easily be prevented.
Missteps such as…
Waiting to Hire an Accountant
Many people mistakenly believe that an accountant has to be a full-time staff member.
When you first create your business, profits will often be very small, and it’s easy to assume you can balance your accounts and prepare for tax season all on your own. But a freelance accountant can work a couple hours per week and save a fortune in the long run by applying their expertise to your finances.
An accountant can even help you plan your business and calculate your expectations, which is crucial at any stage of a business’s development.
Financing with Credit Cards
Most small business owners know the golden rule of not mixing personal and business finances. But more and more, business owners who find it hard to secure the loans they need to start their company rely on both personal and business credit cards for capital.
This temptation can ruin the company’s credit if profits aren’t what you expect. That will keep you from working with vendors and make it even harder to secure loans in the future. Don’t think short-term.
Using Someone Else’s Business Name
Talk about the ultimate small mistake! It would be a disaster to see your business fail because you didn’t check to make sure you were legally entitled to the company name.
You should perform a trademark search for all 50 states to see who is using the same name, because the legal entanglements that come from trademark violation can potentially bankrupt you.
Ordering too Much Inventory
You may have a lot of faith in your product, but wait until the sales are right in front of you before you go overboard in stocking up.
You may be worried about the stress that multiple orders will put on your budget, but that’s a better problem to have than too much inventory that nobody wants to purchase.
Not Reading the Small Print
There are all manner of business loans and alternate financing to get a company off the ground, but they’re not all created the same. Before you sign your name, you should thoroughly understand all fees, interest rates, and payment schedules.
Don’t get surprised by the details of your business loan later on, because if you’re not seeing immediate success, you could be in hot water.
Don’t underestimate the planning stages of starting a business, or how you might need all the help you can get. The more time you spend formulating your path to success, the less likely you are to let one of these small mistakes take down your company. If you’re determined to cut no corners, you’ll be able to conquer the business world.
Photo: Jeff Eaton / CC 2.0