20% of small businesses fail in their first year, 30% of small business fail in their second year, and 50% of small businesses fail after five years in business. Finally, 70% of small business owners fail in their 10th year in business.
Avoiding the following six errors when it comes to creating and implementing your business strategy and put yourself and your business on the successful side of those statistics.
- Not knowing who your customer is
- Failing to niche down
- Not having a financial plan
- Being reactive instead of proactive
- Putting all your eggs into one basket
- Poor Time Management
Not knowing who your customer is
This is one of the biggest reasons businesses fail in my opinion. You cannot serve everyone. Stop trying to. You have to get very clear on who your ideal customer is and market to them.
Failing to niche down
Niche down and get specific with your core services. I’m sure you’ve heard the term; “The riches are in the niches, broad is broke!” If you truly want to build a sustainable business, you have to stay in your lane. Focus on improving your skills within the core services you offer and slowly phase out the rest. It might sound scary to stop services that are bringing in some income, but the long-term gain is definitely worth it.
Having a hard time figuring out how to create time to study and improve your skills, read this blog!
Not having a solid financial plan in place
We all know how important it is to have approximately 3 – 6 months income saved. Easier said than done, but very possible with a solid financial plan in place. I recommend you read Profit First by Mike Michalowicz. Usually, Virtual Assistants operate their business finances like this: Sales minus expenses are equal to profit. Mike Michalowicz strategy flips this on its head, putting profit first and expenses after.
Top Tip: If you sign up for Audible, your first book is free.
Putting all your eggs in one basket
This one is closely related to your financial plan. Relying on a single client or two as a Virtual Assistant is dangerous. If one of your clients stop services, are you able to financially sustain yourself and your business or will this cripple you?
Being Reactive instead of Proactive
Knowing what to expect and staying abreast of what is happening in the industry and the industries you choose to work on will help to ensure that you are ahead of the game. Nothing is more embarrassing and potentially costly to your business that not knowing what to expect or what has changed.
Poor Time Management
As a Virtual Assistant, this is one of the most crucial skills to master. Managing how your time is split between your business and that of your clients is no easy feat. Virtual Assistants often spend weeks at a time solely focused on client business. You will need to factor in time for client work, planning, organizing, communicating and marketing activities. Treat your business like a client and schedule set periods of time in which you will work on your OWN business.
Are you making any of these mistakes in your business? Now is the time to correct them!
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