The eagerness to storm the market and make money from a business idea often leads to entrepreneurs trying out many strategies to gain people’s recognition and patronage.
However, experts say the fast pace of the business environment should not lead to rushed decisions as entrepreneurs need to take precautions before implementing them.
Professionals have discovered that when veterans mentor other business owners using real-life examples of their experiences in business, the mentees are able to learn and avoid such mistakes.
They have also discovered that the pitfalls are often repeated due to lack of proper guidance.
However, experts say every idea and business strategy is a great one but it should be analysed for its potential impact on the business before implementing it.
Failing to delegate
Seeing yourself as a perfect manager that can execute all the tasks effectively is one of the reasons why most small businesses fail, experts have observed.
According to them, the inability to delegate means the business will fail in the absence of the manager, they add.
The Managing Director of Brightside Computer Services, Mr. Moshood Adewale, says doing everything yourself is not the most effective use of your time and strength as a business manager.
He explains that even if the manager can, doing everything by himself or herself isn’t the most effective use of time or talent as a manager.
He says, “You should delegate work to your employees so that you can have enough time to concentrate on other things. This is also an opportunity for them to develop business management and leadership skills. You help them to grow and develop expertise in other areas.
“Whenever you take on a new project or have an unfinished job, hand over some of the tasks to one or more of your employees.”
Not giving clear instructions
Adewale observes that most business managers have formed the habit of making important business decisions without involving their employees.
He adds, “They forget that their employees are always in constant touch with the customers and they understand their preferences better. Don’t keep employees in the dark. You can’t expect your team to work blindly on tasks they do not understand.
“Ask for their suggestions and let them have an input so that they can perform the task with dedication. The more ideas your team invests in a project, the better the results will be.”
Implementing an unstructured idea
The Managing Director of Hidden Treasure Bookstore, Mrs. Modupe Ehirim, says that she developed a bright idea she had seen other businesses adopting and went ahead to implement it without considering its relevance.
In order to create awareness for the book store, she decided to have a road show which created a different impression of the kind of bookstore she runs and is in contrast to what it really stands for.
According to her, she operates a christian bookstore, but during the road show, the recruits played music and had dance steps that stated otherwise.
She says, “The road show was a very good idea because I went on and got the people for the road show and I printed fliers. If we had devoted more time to thinking, we would not have embarked on the road show because people who saw the road show were surprised and asked why treasure bookstore was having this kind of road show.
“This was because the girls I recruited to do the road show used certain music and dance steps which actually did not portray the image that the bookstore had. Meanwhile, I had already spent about half a million naira on it. If I had sat down and thought of it I would not have.”
Before she started implementing the idea, she says she had consulted an expert who was not competent enough and didn’t understand the concept of her book store.
She regrets that the idea took a lot of money out of the business and did not bring any return.
Spontaneous business expansion
While trying to expand his business to increase his income, Adewale, says he partnered with an automobile company and was its manager.
Consequently, he realised he did not have enough time to monitor his computer business and had deviated from his initial business plan.
He said while he was fully engaged with the automobile company, some of his equipment in Brightside computer services got spoilt and he lost some of his clients.
According to him, he made the mistake of not fully engaging his employees to take total control of the business when he was away.
He says, “The mistake I made before joining the automobile company was that I didn’t inform any of my employees and I didn’t give them full control over the computer business. I was supposed to call a meeting and let them know what I intended to do. I thought I could still monitor the two businesses at the same time.”