The 3 Biggest Business Mistakes

The 3 Biggest Business Mistakes

September 2nd, 2021 // 1:59 pm @

The 3 Biggest Business Mistakes

We are circling back here today on this first day of the last third of your year to talk about something very important to the core of your business.  Three very distinct problems that businesses often don’t realize they have fallen victim to until it’s too late.

Before we hammer out the three big mistakes businesses make, let’s talk about the reason why.

When a business hits their stride, has success, and gains momentum and then things go wrong, you wonder why. Everything was going so well.  This is worthy of at least a month’s worth of Weekly Newsletters, but for today we’ll just keep it brief and to the point.

The biggest reason why is because they become comfortable and stop hustling.  They forget what it was like when everything wasn’t so “easy” and then as soon as they do, in a matter of time, it won’t be “easy” any longer.

It could be because they take their success for granted or because they aren’t appreciating what and who has made it all possible in the first place.

Another reason is because they get distracted.  There are many layers of distractions; often it comes from being bored with a system or product or service, or it can come from always looking for something new (which is not a bad thing but it can become a bad thing if other things are forgotten).

I see this all the time in even my best dental practices.  They will add procedures or a piece of equipment and get excited about it but then another part of their practice takes a hit.  They usually end up doing about the same but with a lot more ‘stuff’ to manage and missing out on the growth they intended.

Now, this whole boredom thing can also go far beyond just this.  There are really only two types of people: those who love routine and resist change to the point of avoidance, or those that are so obsessed with ‘what’s next’ they go blowing things up just to have something else to fix.

Both people are right and wrong in different instances for different reasons.  It does depend on their objectives but it is important that they don’t fall into a cycle of feeding their psyche and personality instead of the business itself.

Of course, sustained success requires a balance.  I’m going to come back to that in the coming weeks and share with you some real-life stories about knowing what your business identity is and building it into everything you do.

Finally, while this is not an exhaustive list, there is another one that creeps when business owners end up resenting what it takes to be successful or no longer willing to pay (invest) the price necessary to maintain it.

This is most certainly their prerogative however it is vital to keep a clear mind when assessing your future.  When business owners go down this path, they go questioning everything and try to make things cheaper or easier or get fixated on efficiency by watering down the experience or product.

So, there you go, there are many lessons in those three things right there.

Let’s flip this around to how these can impact your business and result in costly mistakes.

The first big mistake is always the same and that’s being cheap.  Here, businesses are always fighting their growth from the wrong direction.  Anytime you are thinking “how can I spend less” instead of “how can I make more” you are automatically looking in the teeny tiny rearview mirror to growth instead of out the big giant windshield of where you are going.

This has a place in every business strategy and it does demand discipline but it is the single fastest way to lose everything that has made you great.

Cheap with experience or quality or service, which comes through tangible materials, customer engagement, education, and everything in between.

There are places to save and there are places to invest.  The best business owners always know the difference.

The next big one is distraction – working on the wrong things and ignoring what actually is important to your customers and to the success of the business.  Where you allocate your time, energy, and resources matter.

Simply put, great businesses know what they are and what they aren’t.  They never confuse the two.  You have to have some non-negotiables about things you just won’t entertain, do, chase, pursue, consume, or distract yourself with.

That doesn’t mean you never expand or diversify.  This is ever more important for a small businesses and for my professional practices, doctors especially.  You just have to be very mindful that you aren’t working in the wrong directions, spreading yourself too thin, or taking away from the core foundation.

It is, to a significant degree, about building out or building deep and knowing the ramifications of both.  There’s a lot more to say about this in future writings.

Finally, the one I really want to hit home is the idea of comfort and complacency.  The easiest way to dissect it is to share that important bible verse (that someone said at our annual doctors’ retreat last week), “For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required.”

The point is simple: it’s not just about your comfort it is also about your responsibility.  When you are successful and have a business that brings rewards to you and others it does come with some requirements that have become vital pillars of the foundation of the business.

You don’t have to constantly have a fire burning of ambition and always ready to conquer your next business breakthrough.  It is just fine to stay where you are.  However, it is equally important to realize that staying where you are isn’t a place of pause.  It still requires constant motion, maintenance, monitoring, and most of all motivation.

Very often when a business makes a mistake it is because it stems directly from them getting stagnant and then losing their edge.

They think just because they have achieved something it means they will automatically sustain it and that they have earned the right to future results due to past results.

Not so.  As you well know, the only way to stay successful is to continue to earn it again and again with everything you do.

There is good news in all of this.  Every one of these can also be turned into some of your greatest opportunities for breakthroughs and growth in your business and in your own life.  We’ll turn problems into possibilities next week.

In the meantime, be conscious of these pitfalls.  Your future success is determined by what you do tomorrow.  Invest smartly, expand wisely, and earn the rewards every day.

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