8 Common Mistakes Startup Founders Make In Their First Year of Business

It takes a certain level of risk and clear-headedness to start your own business. For any startup founder, the pursuit of taking on a new challenge will not manifest into long-term success if they fail to make calculated decisions regarding their business. Most startups find it difficult to last in the first year of business, and the ones that do often have a higher success rate of building their business.  

Downplaying Market Risk

Many startup founders enter into business with a belief in their technology or product. Sometimes this overambitious belief has them overlooking the market environment. Not monitoring the market trends is one of the biggest mistakes that startup founders often make.

Regardless of how good your business strategy is, if you do not mold your plans according to the current market trends, the business will be destined to fail in a relentless and cruel marketplace.

Taking the wrong advice 

Taking expert advice is the single most essential aspect of starting a business. On the flip side, advice can also be the reason for failure. Startup founders need to rational when it comes to taking advice. As a startup owner, you will likely come across a bombardment of different bits of advice.

This can be very confusing since some advice may even be contradictory to others. Acting upon the wrong advice, therefore, becomes a probable occurrence. In this instance, make sure to select the right person for advice. A general rule of thumb would be someone with loads of experience in a similar business as yours.

Hiring the wrong team

Your team will be the backbone of the enterprise that you are looking to form. Every successful startup founder will easily tell you that they credit their success to their team. Hence, collaborating with the wrong people can lead to disaster, regardless of how good your business plan is. On the other hand, working with a set of compatriots that are capable, determined, and persistent, will edge you closer to your goals sooner than you think.

Spending in the wrong places 

Many startup founders fail to push their business across the one-year mark because they make poor choices regarding their initial investments. Many startup founders spend a fortune on infrastructure and electronic types of equipment.  

For new businesses, expenses such as high-tech laptops and computers are non-essential, meaning, that they can still perform the same function on a cheaper alternative, without splashing a hefty amount on the latest equipment.

Cutting down on costs without compromising on the quality of work keeps allows new businesses to function in the initial years. In the starting, having a safety net is important so that businesses can cope when the rate of cash flow falls.

Ignoring constructive feedback

Feedback is a tool that helps any business improve and get better. Since startups will often not have the budget to run tests for the quality of their product or service, they must rely on constructive feedback. Working on that feedback will perfect your business and help you attain a flawless user experience.

Outsourcing your core competency 

As a startup manager, you will find the option to outsource your core competency very desirable. However, the options to outsource your competency can result in a major setback. Outsourcing exempts your business with its uniqueness and exclusivity.

Mental fatigue 

Handling a startup in its initial years can be excruciatingly stressful. In this instance, startups make the mistake of overburdening themselves over responsibilities. This causes most startup owners to fold under pressure. Staying far from mental fatigue can be challenging. However, with organization and correct distribution of work, it is very much possible.    

Not knowing when to halt or pivot 

Hinting back at the adaptability to market trends, another reason why startup founders fail is that they make haphazard decisions. For a new business owner, every opportunity seems like a glimmering chance.

However, this is far from the truth. Businesses that succeed take on all opportunities very cautiously, and every decision they make involves incredible thought and consideration.

Final thoughts 

The first years of business ultimately determine whether a startup will survive in the coming years. Learning from some of the common mistakes of other startups will put you one step ahead in the industry, and so, make sure that you do not repeat the same mistakes if you want to look onwards to a promising future.

Felix is the co-founder of GrowthBoost, an online journal covering the latest software and marketing tips for entrepreneurs. Alongside digital journalism, Felix recently graduated from university with a finance degree and enjoys helping students and other young founders grow their projects.