5 mistakes I made when starting my own business

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It is impossible for a one-man band to play all the instruments.

key point

  • Many people with simple side hustles or freelancers don’t need complex business structures when they’re just starting out.
  • There are many business pitfalls that were never necessary in the first place — or, are not needed now.
  • Pace yourself and delegate when possible. It’s hard to do it all by yourself at once.

I was so excited when I decided to strike out on my own and start a small business. like, real excited. In fact, I was so excited I dove right in with my eyes closed and all engines on full blast.

Boy was it a mistake.In fact, it ends up being many mistake.

You see, I think building a business means having all the characteristics of a business. Unfortunately for me, those costumes are expensive. Worse, it turns out I don’t even need most of them (at least not yet). Here are some mistakes I made that wasted money in the first place.

1. Creating an LLC Too Early

One of the more costly mistakes I made at first was assuming I needed to form an LLC for my business before I actually started.

For some reason, it never occurred to me that I could exist as a sole proprietor. Instead, I filed all the paperwork, came up with a nice business name, and paid a lot for the privilege of setting up my LLC.

Then, less than a year later, I disbanded it.

For my purposes at the time, the LLC was a bit overkill. I’m the only employee, I have no real business assets to protect, and my risk of liability is low. In other words: I can start my business as a sole proprietor basically for free, no paperwork required.

Do some new businesses require an LLC? Yes, if they want liability protection and tax flexibility. Have I started one of these? No.

2. Set up a business phone line

Twenty years ago, having a dedicated business phone line was a natural move. This is how people communicate. These days, however, even large companies are ditching customer service lines in favor of email and chat.

So, why do I think I need one for my one-man store? I don’t know – but I set one anyway.

After a few months, I canceled it. I didn’t talk to vendors, answer customer calls, or even order work lunches with it. All the phone line did was mock my outdated assumptions (and cost me $30 a month).

If your new business does require a phone line, consider a digital or virtual line. They are usually cheaper.

3. Ordering (too many) business cards

To say I’m obsessed with my business cards is probably an understatement. I spent hours at Adobe designing the perfect card. I made my logo, agonized over fonts, and compared colors until my eyes blurred.

Do you know how many business cards I have issued over the years of my business? about five.

Can a business card be a good tool? Absolutely. Do you need to order 500 units in your first week of business? Absolutely not.

4. Highlight My Site

In the modern world, a business website can make or break your business. However, when you’re just starting out, the website doesn’t necessarily need all the features.

Even if your business is some kind of online store — and mine is definitely not — your website doesn’t need to be perfect. It just needs to be functional and easy to navigate.

Of course, you can hire people to build and maintain it. But for the average new business owner, a simple drag-and-drop website builder might give you a viable website to get the job done before your business grows.

5. Strive to do it all

This is the most difficult mistake to overcome.You see, when I started my business, I was convinced I needed to do it all – and it had to happen Now.

it doesn’t. it doesn’t.

You are a human. There is a limit to what you can do before you fall, pass out, or completely lose your mind. The cliché about marathons versus sprints? Entrepreneurship is 100% a marathon.

It also tends to be better as a team sport. We all have things we’re really good at — and things we’re definitely not good at. Delegate the latter if possible. This doesn’t necessarily mean you need an employee; independent contractors are easy to find and hire, especially on sites like Upwork and Fiverr.

You don’t need to do all this yourself.What’s more, you may not be capable Do it all yourself, especially not all at once. At the very least, you need to pace yourself and do one thing at a time. If you can, hire someone to help you where you need it.

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