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What have been your biggest mistakes with your business during the early days?

Wondering some of the issues that I may encounter and how to avoid them.

9 Replies

Jeffrey Pearl
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Jeffrey Pearl Entrepreneur
Entrepreneur, CEO and Sales Leader
My best advice is to get real paying customers onboard ASAP! This will take lots of the pressure off "out of the gates"
Jerry Mahabub
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Jerry Mahabub Entrepreneur
Chairman of the Board and CEO at Astound Holdings, Inc.
If you think your projections are conservative, chop them by 1/100th and extend it out an additional 5 years.
Jeffrey Pearl
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Jeffrey Pearl Entrepreneur
Entrepreneur, CEO and Sales Leader
Cut Revenue projections in half, Double the cash needed and double the timeline to profitability. The most important thing is to focus on sales!!!
Angelos Kapatos
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Angelos Kapatos Entrepreneur
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Wasting time on people your gut is telling you to avoid. Not having beta project lined up before fabrication was complete. Being professional and respectful to the naysayers when I should of embarrassed them.
Chamakhe Maurieni
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Chamakhe Maurieni Entrepreneur
CEO at MyDiary
Not learning how to code earlier : My refusal to sharpen my coding skillset, allowed a lot of inadequacies to go unnoticed with my technical team. Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android
Kodjo Hounnake
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Kodjo Hounnake Entrepreneur
Founder & CEO at PickUpLater
1) Not realizing that expensive developers doesn't automatically translate into a good product and vice versa

2) Letting too many developers touch your code base without keeping track of changes on Github

3) Overly focusing on customer acquisition and not focusing enough on customer retention

4) Not listening to enough start-up podcasts (wealth of info burried in podcast that could save you $1,000s)






Giles Crouch
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Giles Crouch Entrepreneur
Digital Behavioural Economist | Speaker | Writer | Technology Strategist | on Twitter @Webconomist
If you're planning to raise capital, start building your Due Diligence binders right away. Documenting as you go will save you time when an investor wants to start this process. If you're planning to bring a partner on, make sure you're compatible, a bad partner can be a nightmare later. Even if you get along great, have a Founders Agreement right away and sign it. That should transition to a Management Contract once you get financing. Put your papers in place. Hopefully you won't need them, but if you do...this also shows an investor you're serious and respect their investment.
David C. MSE
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David C. MSE Entrepreneur
CEO at Business Development
Angelos-great answers! I too wasted too much time on people I should not have. However, as someone who confronted many naysayers, I can say most of the time it was a waste of valuable energy and time. They never change anyway which is why they are often stuck telling other people what can't be done. However, every now and then you gotta tell it like it is:) Im sure you will have your chance to make up for it in these forums. There are some "naysayers" who clearly lack experience but think they know everything! Although, personally I wouldn't waste much time on them.
K. Alan Robbins
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K. Alan Robbins Entrepreneur
Head Moose at Moose WorldWide Digital
Having done this twice:

  • Do take the time to get everything setup before you get going especially the proper tracking systems so you know where you stand. Three months is about right.
  • Hire your friends and family, but don't plan on keeping them on as it will turn out to be a very bad idea later.
  • Think long and hard about your pitch, your value proposition, and have some sort of halfway decent collateral.
  • If you need business consultants, personal life coaches, etc. you're not ready to do this keep working.
And the most important advice of all:

Don't ever give up. Remember even a blind squirrel finds a nut every so often.
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