As an entrepreneur, one of your biggest challenges will be dealing with the harsh realities of entrepreneurship. No matter what you do, no matter how much effort you put in, there are bound to be some bumps along the way that are going to get in your way and frustrate you.

This is where entrepreneurship fails many entrepreneurs. The fact that they did not have any training or education in managing a business, they were not able to see the opportunities for themselves and their businesses; they were not able to realize the value of their products and services and they failed to recognize the needs of their customers.

All of these are reasons why entrepreneurship fails. This failure can be avoided though.

There are five primary things that entrepreneurs need to do to avoid failure in their business. This article is adapted from the work of Daniel Priestley from Dent Global.

You need to learn the basics of management.

It goes beyond just learning the skills to run a business, understand your business inside out, your message, your offer, your customers and importantly, the problem you are trying to solve. It’s no good just being good at your chosen skillset.

The second thing is to always keep innovating.

To keep innovating, you need to have a way to keep on learning about technology and new ways of using it. You need to keep researching and finding ways to make your product better, don’t rest on your preconceived knowledge about your industry or product. The first step to doing this is to find a mentor who can teach you what you need to know about sales, finances, marketing and other basics of business that will help you to keep innovating.

The third basic principle is that entrepreneurship is a process.

You need to keep growing your business at a steady pace. If you are too static, your competitors will catch up and eat your lunch. If you let yourself grow too slow, you can miss opportunities for growth and success. So ensure that you have a robust process in place to manage your business. I recently wrote an article on this.

The fourth principle is that sales matter.

To be successful, you need to sell a good product or service to someone who needs it. This doesn’t mean you have to turn every customer into a customer, but you do need to keep bringing in new customers so that your revenue keeps growing. So although you may not be a salesperson, you need to learn fast and understand where to find customers, otherwise, your ideas will not be experienced by anybody.

Even Father Xmas has to think about sales

The fifth and final principle is that entrepreneurship means being flexible.

You need to be willing to change your mindset and thought processes to the changing needs of your customers and your business. To be successful you need to do less and do more — even if that means being stingy on some purchases.

Do read my previous article on startup growth, you can access it here.

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