Being your own boss is lit for so many reasons. You can set your own work schedule, go to lunch when you want, and there’s no cap on how much money you’ll bring home each week. If you’ve been in business for yourself and feel like entrepreneurship is more of a burden than a blessing, here are some areas that may be causing you to miss the mark.

  1. Your marketing isn’t strategic. The channels you use to advertise your services should be places that your ideal customer is likely to be. For example, if you are a seamstress, now would be a good time to let people know you’re available to make prom dresses. Generally, you can find high schoolers on Instagram and Snapchat, not reading the local newspaper. Fashion is a visual thing and your customer won’t get the full spectrum of the design in a black and white newspaper ad.
  2. You’re misleading people. Be honest with yourself and let customers know what you can and can’t deliver. If you’re only good at making cupcakes, why take a deposit for a seven-tier wedding cake? Although you see yourself expanding into bigger orders, the most important day of a customer’s life is not the time to take chances. Practice on your time, not the customer’s.
  3. Your personal life overshadows your business. Do potential customers know more about your drama-filled relationships or your shady attitude versus the business you’ve started? Reevaluate what’s going on in your personal life so it doesn’t stunt your professional growth.
  4. Your work has left a bad taste in someone’s mouth. Perhaps your last business transaction didn’t go as well as you thought. Or maybe a customer expressed dislike and you ignored it. In any event, a bad review spreads like hives. Assess the damages and come up with a plan to save face.
  5. You’re lazy. Everyone wants to be a boss until they realize you can’t fake it until you make it. When you’re working a 9 to 5, it’s easy to shuffle around a few papers, drink coffee and convince your supervisor that you deserve to get paid this week. However, when you decide to be your own boss you work with clients who have direct access to you. There’s no extension to forward their calls to and keep them on hold until they forget what they called for–they want to hear from you about the progress of what they’ve paid for. You must deliver results.
  6. Your price points are way off. You may be undercharging for your products and services. If your revenue barely sustains your basic needs, it’s time to increase your prices. Sometimes as new entrepreneurs we are so anxious to do what we love for a living that we forget it has to be profitable.
  7. You’re too busy focusing on another entrepreneur’s success. Do you stalk people’s social media and fantasize about what it would be like to get the press and speaking engagements they receive? If your answer is yes, stop doing that and focus on how you can improve your brand and achieve the same success. It’s also not good to copy other brands. Find your authentic voice and customers will find you.
  8. You need to delegate some tasks. Being an entrepreneur means that you started a business, but it doesn’t mean you have to work alone. Time is of the essence and you shouldn’t waste it on things that are outside of your skillset. Graphic design, public relations, and accounting can be handled by someone else if it’s too much for you to handle.
  9.  You don’t know how to network. Networking is not about becoming friends with folks and stealing their connections. Socializing with others is a huge part of life and if you want to succeed in business you’re going to have to position yourself at conferences and events tailored to your industry. Attending workshops allows you to meet other smart people who can relate to the work you do and refreshes your thinking.
  10. You have no faith in yourself. Entrepreneurship is not for the faint at heart. If you don’t believe in what you’re doing, why should a potential customer? Reevaluate why you went into business to make sure this is what you really want to do and find a good mentor in your industry who is seasoned if you decide to continue.

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