I have been an entrepreneur for the last three years. It has been a roller coaster ride and I have made some very common mistakes. I sometimes wish I didnt make them or somebody could have advised me. So just sharing if it is useful for you.
Mistake No 1: Getting into something I had no clue about
It is difficult to know about a business without doing it. However starting something without any groundwork without any expertise is a mistake. My first shot at entrepreneurship was a HR Consultancy. It is a business built on reputation and though I and my partners were able to arrange meetings with top HR managers, they didn't really trust us due to our lack of experience or the right qualifications for the business
Mistake No 2 : Not starting earlier
I had an inclination and opportunity to become an entrepreneur but I didn't start till I lost my job after the company I worked in closed down. I probably should have started 5-6 years earlier
Mistake No 3: Doing it for money
This is a bit counter intuitive but I believe one must be passionate about the business and when I tried my first business, I just wanted to make money and was not really passionate about the idea - that does not really work. It starts making sense when you really do what you like to do - there are low margin businesses and high margin businesses but what drives you day after day is the passion behind the idea
Mistake No 4: Thinking that marketing is free
For a long time, I believed that if I made something good, it will market itself for free. It does not work like that - no matter how small the budget, it is important to take your business to the right audience and that costs money
Mistake No 5 : Doing everything
No matter how smart you are, you will always need to pass some of the things to others. You cant do all by yourself. It is important to understand your core competence and let other people do things that they are good at - it may be a colleague or outsourced or maybe it can just wait.