It took me almost 5 years to build a 7-figure business.
I probably could have done it in about half that time if I hadn’t made the following mistakes.
Here are the 10 most common mistakes that most first time entrepreneurs make that can cost you millions and ruin your business.
1. Not Outsourcing Quickly Enough
I spent nearly 2 years trying to do everything myself.
It took me years to hire a podcast editor, content writer, and virtual assistant.
And for those 2 years… I struggled.
If I had hired and outsourced low level tasks faster, I would have had more time to focus on growing my business and driving profit and could have scaled things MUCH faster.
If you are thinking about hiring someone, do it!
Having help and outsourcing non essential tasks will give you the time and mental energy you need to succeed as an entrepreneur.
2. Not Having Written Systems in Place
Most entrepreneurs operate based on a system known as “Whateverifeelliketoday”.
In other words… They have no system.
For several years, I ran my business like a hobby.
I didn’t track KPIs, I wasn’t great about book keeping, I didn’t have clearly written goals, and I had no systems for managing my employees.
When this was brought to my attention, I did a complete overhaul of my business.
I created several documents to systematize how I did things and within 18 months, I grew my company from the low 6-figures to 7-figures.
3. Not Mandating a NDA/Noncompete Agreement When You Hire Employees
I’ve had several employees steal clients, start their own businesses, and generally screw me out of a LOT of money.
I foolishly trusted them and assumed that they would act with integrity and honesty.
… I didn’t require them to sign a non-compete or non disclosure and as a result I lost nearly 25% of my client base on two separate occasions.
I don’t care how great someone is…
When you hire a new employee… Even if they are a life long friend, they MUST sign an NDA and NCC.
4. “Investing” Your Capital in Crappy Software and Gimmicks Instead of Profit Driven Endeavors
Once you start making money, it’s easy to think that you should invest in every new software or gimmick that you see.
But the reality is that most of these products are a waste of time and money.
I’ve spent thousands of dollars on programs and software that did nothing to improve my bottom line.
If I had instead invested that money in hiring new employees, training my existing team, or increasing my marketing, my business would probably be at 8-figures instead of 7.
Focus on profit and ignore the rest.
5. Wasting Time on Vanity Metrics Instead of the Bottom Line
You can’t take likes, upvotes, and views to the bank.
… Only checks and credit card numbers.
It’s easy to get caught up in vanity metrics and assume that just because you have a large following you are successful.
I had millions of podcast downloads, tens of thousands of social followers, and an email list that of 10k people… And I was still broke.
Money talks.. Vanity walks.
6. Not Leveraging Paid Traffic to Scale Fast
If you want to scale your business fast, then you need to use paid traffic… Period.
Whether it’s Google PPC, Facebook Ads, Instagram Ads, or purchasing keywords, as soon as you have the money to do so, you need to invest in paid traffic.
As soon as I mastered the art of Facebook advertising, I increased my bottom line by nearly 300%.
I waited nearly 3 years before I did this and could have scaled my business much faster if I’d used paid advertising from the get go.
7. Failing to Follow Up with Prospects
The money is in the follow up.
Often times, myself or a member on my sales team will get a rejection and immediately assume that they’ve lost the sale.
But this is far from the case…
About 90% of the revenue my company generates comes from following up with leads and prospects.
Just because someone has said “No” to your offer once, doesn’t mean that they will always say no.
Master the art of the follow up and you’ll never hurt for money again.
8. Believing the Lie that You Can’t “Get Rich Quick”
I used to believe that you couldn’t get rich quick.
… I was wrong.
You can get rich as quickly as you want.
But you can’t get rich easy.
If you are willing to work hard, invest your money intelligently, and take calculated risks, you can get rich by the end of this year.
Don’t believe the hype.
It’s not that hard to make money.
But you need to know what you are doing and leverage your income to do so.
9. Not Investing Enough Time Into Your Employees
If you want to succeed as an entrepreneur, you need to surround yourself with employees who are better than you at what they do.
This means that you need to invest time, money, and energy into those employees.
Right now, I spend about 80% of my time investing in my employees and 20% focusing on other areas of my business.
As a result, my business has grown more in the past 12 months than in the previous 4 years combined.
You are only as good as your weakest link… So strengthen every link in your proverbial chain and you will accelerate your success at a staggering rate.
10. Allowing Success to Go to Your Head
Once you’ve made a little bit of money it can be tempting to think that you have it all figured out.
… You don’t
And this attitude will result in a fast fall from grace and inevitable failure.
Stay humble as you start to succeed.
Realize that there are other entrepreneurs out there who know more than you do.
Take advice from people who are better than you are and never let success go to your head.