Lies entrepreneurs a dangerous beliefs that can quickly lead to the demise of any entrepreneur. Entrepreneurs are ambitious, determined, and sometimes blindly optimistic bundles.
While irrational optimism is undoubtedly a good thing (and necessary) when you’re running your own business, it can lead you into many potentially harmful tendencies.
The more you know the lies entrepreneurs tell yourself when you go through a difficult journey in entrepreneurship, the better prepared you will be to pick up on those who can spell doom when the going gets rough.
Here are the 6 biggest notable lies told every day.
Everyone will love our product.
It is simply not possible, nor should it be desired. If your product or service is designed to appeal to everyone, you’d better be prepared to spend billions of dollars on marketing and PR to get in front of your prime audience. You will compete against established competitors on price, quality, and other attributes that are hard to call a real competitive advantage. Moreover, even if consumers recognize that your product is better than the others, if they do not feel particularly passionate about it, you will have difficulty convincing them to switch from what is “good enough” already.
Some of the most successful products and online companies, including Pat Flynn’s Smart Passive Income Blog, have started by going after a very well-defined niche rather than trying to be a drop in the bucket in a vast industry.
We will only need a little funding.
Underestimating future costs and grasping exactly how much time (and money) you need before generating enough cash flow to pay you a livable salary are consistently cited as two of the biggest reasons businesses fail.
Aim to have at least six months’ worth of a year’s worth of expenses in the bank (or in funding) before fully embarking on a new business if you have yet to start it as a viable business for the first time.
Our estimates are conservative.
This man has gotten countless employers in trouble over the years. Several hundred billion dollar unicorns lost a lot of their revenue in 2015. Because entrepreneurs are rightly optimistic about the potential success of their companies, this can lead to seriously inflated estimates of future income and business growth.
It’s widely accepted in the startup community that investors rarely consider the financial plans of entrepreneurs coming through the door. When you land on the most conservative projections for the first few years of earnings growth, try to cut those numbers at least in half. It will be beneficial if you’re stepping up and funding the business yourself – and will avoid a painful return to full-time work.
We have no competitors.
Refrain from knowing that you have competition, no matter what business you’re in, can wear you down very quickly. Even though your unique solution to instantly clean your teeth with a fantastic new spray once a day may seem to have little competition for the same rush, you compete with brands like Oral-B and Crest, a billion-dollar-a-year company that sells toothbrushes: products that clean teeth.
If you have yet to find competitors, you’re not looking hard enough.
We can take our time.
Time is always of the essence in business. Whether you know it or not, there could be someone else out there in the world working on the same project as you. If they get a similar solution to market to you, it can seriously reduce your expected interest rate. Take a real-life example of when Periscope and Market launched similar live-streaming products almost simultaneously. With Periscope supported by Twitter and Market with a small venture funding, there was a little struggle.
Our patent makes us invincible.
While patents can serve as a short-term competitive advantage for a new business, it is only worth its investment in most industries if it succeeds in court. If your product is patented, you should patent it, but don’t expect to notify your market leader immediately.
For all you know, a mid-range competitor could compete with the same product and beat you in a lawsuit because they can bankroll a more extended lawsuit.
Whatever you do, never lose your independence. It will empower you to continue leveraging, creating, and building a robust business. Just be realistic with yourself as you go.