The Entrepreneurial Sin That Can Kill A Business Before It Starts & How To Manage It (Pt.2)

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The one sin that can kill your business before it even starts should be taken seriously. Here's how to manage it & stay on top!

In Part I, I presented data to reflect the growth of startups around the world and the significant role it plays in ensuring economic growth, innovation, job creation, and social integration.

Having said that, with nearly over 70% of startups failing as fast as they started, entrepreneurs may become their own “worst enemy” by expecting too much too soon. Many aspiring entrepreneurs seem to overlook the fact that for every established business, there is a story behind its success or continued existence. The success stories we read about are the result of years of persistence, hard and smart work, adjustments, changes, fine tuning ideas and systems, with sometimes-near bankruptcy experiences. These factors help to define the business we are familiar with and patronize for products and services.
It is essential to appreciate that most, if not all businesses go through cycles.

A better understanding of this cycle can help a new business owner better manage their expectation from the start of the business to becoming a market leader. It’s not a must that every business goes through all the stages. The benefit of this lies in the appreciation of the process that is what makes all the difference.

The Business Life Cycle

This is the pictorial view of the business life cycle with a brief explanation of each stage below:

Victor Kwegyir Business Life Cycle

#1 Aspiration

At this stage, you consider starting a business and are sold on the idea but have yet to identify which direction to go.

#2 Conceptualization

At this stage, you have identified an opportunity or idea you want to pursue.

#3 Gathering

This stage makes a huge difference between succeeding and failing. It’s at this stage you research the idea, seek advice, and narrow down the options for moving forward.

#4 Planning

At this stage, you draw up a structured plan or business plan, using all the information gathered.

#5 Production

It is at this stage you pull together your resources to create products ready for potential customers.

#6 First Sale

This is when the “first fruits” of the business are purchased, and customers part with their cash for the products and/or services of the business.

#7 Testing

By this stage, the business systems and operations are put to the test. The amount of testing at this stage depends on the volume of business, complexity of systems and operations, and the business environment or challenges the business faces.

#8 Fine Tuning

The business at this stage seeks out ways to alter, correct or fine-tune operations to establish the best methods and practices.

#9 Expansion

This is the stage where the business has already defined its systems and methods and is ready to duplicate itself by branching out or franchising.

#10 Final Stage

The business has become a major player in its industry and has the potential to become a market leader. Not many businesses get to this stage.

Starting a business is an exciting prospect for most entrepreneurs. Unfortunately most startups tend to miss out on the opportunity to survive the crucial first three years to grow to become successful. An entrepreneur’s ability to manage expectation as they pursue their dream is too important to ignore. Many give up on their way to fulfilling a dream because of the high expectations they had and their unwillingness to make room for unexpected delays and events that could crop up. Thus, denying themselves of the golden prize of success they so craved for. Be smart and avoid becoming a victim of this ONE THING.

*For the full version of the Business Life Cycle please check out my co-authored book (“You’ve Been Fired! Now What?”)


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