Things you should not do when starting a business


As I am getting more and more inquiries related to starting a new business I thought of sharing few points with the readers who seek for advices and guidances from me. First of all I would like to thank them. I have personally written back to many of them. For the rest of them to whom I haven’t written back, this article may be useful. Let’s see the reasons that majority of them mention as why they would like to start a business. The reasons can be categorised into few segments. First one is requesting for ideas to start a business as they do not have a proper direction, secondly thinking starting a business is a solution to get rid of their bosses’ scolding and temporary work pressure, thirdly having money in hand and looking ways to invest it productively and lastly having a concept or an idea and looking ways to execute it in the real world.

Everything in this world depends on something. A company will invest further believing in it’s financial strength, a student believes in achieving good results believing that the parents and teachers will support, a family remains happy and comfortable believing the husband or father will protect them.

Similarly, as an Entrepreneur, many of us start the business believing in so many things. Hence I am writing this post to say in which you should not depend and start a business. I think this might give some answers to some of my readers’ questions.

With the aspiration to be your own boss everyone believe their gut feeling and leave the current job to start the business. This post will be suitable for who plan to start something without big capital or no capital also to people who believe their strength and skills to start a business.

1- Do not start a business thinking that the society will encourage you or support you.

Entrepreneurs are like inventors who did not fear to jump off a hill to test an airplane, who believed that they can fly despite the society’s criticisms. So when you are thinking of a start up do not just believe that the society as a whole will support you to grow. Society will start assess your failures more than the success. If you struggle at the beginning it will advice to go back to work. Similarly when the society says do not take risk or risk your family’s financial security for the sake of doing a business, you do not have to listen to that too.

2- Do not believe in luck all the time.

Remember, your hard work and focus will bring you success. In my point hard work with luck may bring you consistent success. Always have positive attitude towards anything and believe that positive power will bring luck or success to your business.

3- Do not wait for opportunities.

Create chances and cease thinking that chances and opportunities will find you. This world is full of opportunities. You have to ask for business and you have to find the opportunities. People sit and wait until the opportunity comes and knocks the door rather going extra miles to actively seek for it. When you network you build your personal brand and this will bring you more contacts and opportunities.

Allocate your time to seek for it. People just give up when they face a difficulty in business. In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity says Albert Aientien. If you think you do not have the expected skills then seek for it, develop the skills and then make use of the opportunity.

4- Do not expect others to motivate you.

When you are feeling down you have to do something to cheer you up. If you have kind and supportive people around you, you are lucky enough to move forward with their encouragement and advice. But if there is no one, remember you have to motivate yourself.

5- Do not believe in banks to start your business or to run the business.

In Sri Lanka I have seen most of the banks carry the so called tagline or motto saying “WE SUPPORT SME’s” etc. If you believe this and approach a bank for loan, even with a best idea and a realistic action plan, the results is very less likely to be positive. The banks would say we offer funds if your company’s turnover exceed 100 or 150 million rupees, or you have to produce assets or guarantors working for government sectors and much more. Though the banks say they support entrepreneurship, in most of the cases that’s not helping a start-up or a SME to begin or expand.

The bitter truth is, there are so many people out there without capital and only having the entrepreneurship drive to start something in their own.  Obtaining funds form banks once you establish yourself is easier but by that time you may not need the support form the bank. Though this may be acceptable from the banks’ point of view, the disappointing fact is the banks are not walking the talk. Ideally the banks should advertise as “WE SUPPORT ESTABLISHED ENTREPRENEURS” rather disappointing the start ups with false promise.

6- Do not start a business simply to show-off.

World will automatically recognise you once you achieve something. Do not expect people to come and praise you. Work hard and keep it covered, let your success make the noise.

7- Do not compare others with you when you are in your own.

If you are in corporate then yes, you can do that. When you are in your own you are unique. Do not spend unnecessarily just because your friend is spending, do not show off because your friend in doing so and do not buy items that are unnecessary for you. You have to plan your life and lead it in a way that benefits your business.

8- Do not expect your family to take part in your business.

Most people when they start business they bring their family members into the business or expect the family members to support. Remember that the entrepreneurship life is challenging and not easy as you think. Do not expect your loves ones to carry the burden with you. Let them live their dreams whilst your live yours.