You’re running your small business. You’re doing things your way, and you think you have it all under control. The fact of the matter is, the potential for things to spiral out of your control always exists. There are several different things that you may be doing that might actually be hurting your business instead of helping it. We are going to review some of these things. Take a look at whether or not you are actually committing a small business faux pas, and if so, you’ll be able to correct course before they start to negatively affect your business.
Excessive Focus on Profits
While profit is certainly a goal of business, there is such a thing as being too focused on the bottom line. If your only concern is money, you will slowly start to drive employees away, and ultimately drive your customers away as well. Money is important, but losing sight of the human aspect, the fact that your employees have lives, that stuff happens, and that your customers, and even you have a life outside of making money or having someone make money for you is important. If you become lost in the idea of money, you will lose sight of the reason you are making money, and thus will inevitably start to lose control.
It is vital to be confident in your business and your business ideas. It is this confidence that serves to grow your business and is surely what prompted you to start your business in the first place. Don’t be overconfident, however. Keep both feet on the ground. Be realistic in your expectations. Remember that there is always room for improvement, and a good idea can always be improved upon to become a great idea. Constantly look for new ways to improve your business. Don’t just assume that your business is awesome and it rocks and you need to change absolutely nothing. This overconfidence is what can cause your business to fail.
Need for Control
The last faux pas we are going to address is the relentless need for control. Small business owners have often started their business by themselves. They are generally the only employee until their business takes off. They get used to doing everything themselves. When the business grows, the problem comes when they continue to try to do everything themselves. Learn to delegate. Understand that things may not get done the way that you used to do them, but they will still get done and done to the standards you have set. Accept that change is necessary and release a modicum of control; if you don’t, it can become a literal death grip that chokes the life out of your company.
It’s Not Perfect, But It’s Mine
In working to address each of these concerns and working to ensure that there is the appropriate balance within the company, it will become possible for your business to grow and flourish in ways that you may not have dreamed possible. Your small business is like a child you are raising, and just like when raising a child, you have to learn when to let go and to allow it to grow. The first step, the first bicycle ride without training wheels, the first car… businesses grow similarly to people, and when your business grows, you have to remember to keep sight of what is important, just like with a child.
Image Source: Borselaer. (2014). Need for Control. Retrieved from http://www.borselaer.org/wp-content/uploads/need-for-control.jpg