I’ve stumbled across an older (2021) article by Forbes listing eight common reasons solopreneurs fail and I couldn’t agree more with their list.
Maybe that’s because all eight of the reasons they’ve listed are ones I cover with my clients 😊
But also because at least half of the list is mindset related.
I love all the straight-up business coaching but my real passion lies in the mindset and healing work I do.
I’ve been fascinated with the connection between the mind and body since I minored in Psychology at university and my Kindle is filled with books that help me further my understanding of this connection.
I’ve always loved to figure out what makes people tick!
So, here’s Forbes eight common reasons solopreneurs fail and a little tip for getting past each one:
1. Aiming for perfection instead of just starting – total mindset issue. What if I fail? What if people laugh at what I’m doing? If I’m launching my business with this programme it has to be perfect or my whole business will fail.
Here’s the thing; if you stick it out at this solopreneur thing long enough, you’re going to fail. Everyone fails because no one’s perfect and sometimes because you don’t have the skills you need to succeed (do you know how much you have to figure out just to launch a low-ticket digital product?).
Get used to failure and the fear of failure. Learn from your failures and never make the same mistakes twice. And know that the more you do, the more confident you’ll become and the less you’ll fail.
2. Trying to do everything on their own – marketing, selling, creating, delivering, accounting, and legal issues. The to-do list of a solopreneur is bloody long and a lot of it is pretty damn tedious.
I know how hard it can be to commit to spending money when there’s not a lot, if any, coming in. But what’s better for your business – you spending a week creating your nurture sequence (after putting it off for a couple of months) or paying someone to do it so you can spend that week generating leads?
3. No pre-launch planning – be prepared for when the clients start coming in. Have your legals sorted, find yourself an accountant, figure out what software/platforms you’ll need and get familiar with them.
Most importantly, do your market research!!! Seriously, if you do nothing else, do this. In this day of social media, market research is a doddle to do. Make sure that thing that you’re so passionate about and convinced people need is really something they want! And as a bonus, if you ask the right questions, you’ll get language you can use in your marketing (the fastest way to create copy that makes your audience say “It’s like you’re inside my head!”).
4. Getting in your own way – this is a toughie and a combination of mindset and nervous system regulation. If you don’t learn the tools to get past this block, you will always have to deal with it the hard way.
There’s so much fear, self-doubt and just general uncomfortableness that comes with the growth that you need to experience when running your own business. You have to learn to sit with that fear and expand what you can hold so that your nervous system can catch up with you. Every single time you move up a level in your business, this mind gremlin will come out to keep you where you are.
Getting past this one is all about learning the tricks you need to get around that caveman part of your brain!
5. Not delegating enough – yes, I know your business is your baby. You love it, you nurture it, and no one can look after it the way you do. But let’s not forget the downside to babies – they keep you up all night, the sick up all over you just as you’re walking out the door, they scream their heads off whenever anything is wrong because it’s the only way they know how to communicate.
You need help to give you the time to focus on the business and keep you sane!
6. Not understanding your numbers – don’t even get me started on this! Almost every single client I’ve worked with these last two years has not been clear on their numbers. From not being able to tell me how much it costs to run their business to not realising that they’re only making enough money to cover their expenses three months out of the year, you have to get your numbers right. Getting control of numbers helped one of my clients last year turn her first profit in seven years!!!
Delegating your financials to your accountant doesn’t mean you get to delegate responsibility for understanding how they affect your business.
7. Not hiring strategically – this one’s easy. Know your strengths and hire people to fill in the gaps WHEN YOU NEED THEM. You don’t need to get out there and build a huge team to get the right support.
8. Not considering outside perspectives – this is such a great argument for working with a coach or a mentor, especially in a group or membership setting. Getting access to fresh eyes on your business, understanding what your peers are doing, paying attention to what’s going on around you helps stop you stagnating and actively find ways to keep growing.
The one thing I would add to this list?
Not carrying out regular and consistent reviews. Finding your wins so you can celebrate them and keep yourself motivated. Understanding what’s gone wrong in your month, your launch, your messaging when things start to go a bit Pete Tong so you can make a quick course correction.
What would you add?