Every entrepreneur is bound to fail at least once. The size of the failure does not nearly matter as much as figuring out where everything started to go wrong. If you don’t know where things went south, you won’t learn anything and you may end up repeating the mistake later on. Naturally, you don’t want that. Here are a few things that could have resulted in your project’s untimely end.
Failure to Set an End Date
Every company or project must have a realistic end date marked on your calendar. Fail to give it enough time and you’ll have lost before you even begun. Give it too much time and you’ll waste time.
If you’re not sure how to appropriately schedule your project, figure out everything that it needs to succeed. Then figure out how much time each step will take and calculate the length of the project from there.
Failure to Orient Your Team
The story of the entrepreneur who did it by himself is just that – a story. You’ll need a strong and capable team to get your ideas off the ground. However, the best team in the world can’t get anywhere if they have different ideas as to where the project will go and how it will get there.
That means showing your team the big picture. They need to understand where and how their tasks fit into the project’s ultimate goal. Tell them how each of their tasks will lead to that goal and why they are important.
Failure to Keep Everyone Updated
Every entrepreneur will learn at some point that you need to adapt constantly. Maybe your demographic isn’t as responsive as it should be, or you find that your supply chain isn’t up to par. Whatever the change is, you’ll need to react to it appropriately. You’ll also want to make sure that your team knows what changes need to be made.
Send your team a memo and let them know what to expect at the weekly meeting. Make sure that by the end of the meeting everyone’s responsibilities are clear and that they have clear steps on how to fulfill them.
Keeping everyone updated includes you, so make sure to use that weekly meeting to keep tabs on your crew. Keep them accountable. Make sure that they’re all doing their job and that they’re doing it well. And if they aren’t, for one reason or another, the weekly meeting is a great time to assign some extra help while figuring out why they’re falling behind.
Your Key Team Members Are Often Unavailable
Important members of your team being out of touch or unavailable for important meetings can spell disaster for your entrepreneurial endeavor. Not only will it look bad to any clients, but it’ll severely impair everyone else’s morale. After all, if the most valuable members of the project can’t seem to find it in them to show up, why should they?
Make sure this doesn’t happen by leading by example. Reply to phone calls and emails as soon as possible. Let nothing slip through your fingers and be on top of every issue.
Failure to Ensure Transparency
Failures will occur, both major and minor. It can be tempting to just sweep those under the rug and keep your team from knowing about them, but that can lead to distrust and will ultimately damage their trust. Keep your crew in the loop. Letting them know everything about the company will help develop a sense of ownership, which can inspire them to work better.
Staying on the ball can be a difficult task, but it can be done. As an entrepreneur, it is your responsibility to make sure that you do everything in your power to maximize the odds of success. Following these tips is a definitive step in that direction.