EP 2: Don't Do What I Did!
Play • 13 min

We all have those times in our lives that we wish we could take back and do over again, right? Well, that’s how I feel about my startup experience 20 years ago. Not having somebody to turn to that had the know-how and proven success as a friend, coach or mentor was a significant hurdle to my launch and business building process. Mistakes were made on having a solid planning and launch process. Constant confusion about a basic course of action to take. It was all very challenging.  

So I created a short list (it could have been a lot longer) of the top 6 things I did wrong, so that you could hopefully learn from my mistakes and have a better launch to your small business.  

1. Doubt Yourself

We’re all stuck with our own self image problems and perspectives and we have to deal with it. But knowing about the problem is the first step in dealing with the problem and eliminating the problem, right? Well, I didn’t really think I could accomplish much, so my vision was small. And with a small vision, comes small thinking, small planning, small expectations.. you get the picture. Since I didn’t think I could accomplish big things, the bigger things weren’t even on my radar screen for goals. 

2. Wait

So another thing that I wish I had done, was to start a lot sooner. I waited way too long to finally throw that switch in my head and think of myself as an entrepreneur. 

It’s easy to make excuses and put your dream on hold. There’s always something that gets in the way of launching your business idea. The list seems endless. Between lack of confidence, lack of information, lack of planning, lack of strategy, it’s a struggle just waiting to happen.  

3. Hold Back

Then, when I did finally get the courage to launch, I held back and played it safe. Why? Why would I do that when I was getting clients and making some decent money? Fear of failure? Maybe. Fear of success? Probably more of that. 

4. Dream Small

So small dreams, small accomplishments, small results. Never craving more. Always satisfied with making less than I should have been making. No specific strategy? No specific success. 

Dreaming small was about all the dreaming I could do. So I had to learn how to dream all over again. I had to learn how to think big, dream big, expect big, and that’s something that didn’t come easy for me.  

5. Avoid Details in the Business Plan

You see, when you skimp on the planning in the business plan, you skimp on the dream as well. Vague details give vague results. Vague dream provides a vague sense of accomplishment. Taking the business plan seriously was not really part of the plan. Tom, just wing it for awhile and see where it goes was more like it. 

6. Quit your job without a plan

And while I’m talking about the plan… or lack of it, I REALLY need to mention that you shouldn’t quit your full time job without a solid plan. 

I thought that quitting my job was part of the dream solution. But it wasn’t. It was just the beginning of another problem. Because I launched without a solid plan.  

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