business growthColin Powell said, “There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure.” We talk to a lot of small business owners. We learn about their business needs, how they best use our system and the steps they took to build a successful business. They also share their missteps along the way. Today we want to share the 3 mistakes that will stunt your business growth that we’ve learned from our customers.

  1. Treating your business like a job. You started your business with a dream. Now it may seem more like another job. You get up each day and put out fires and fail to take action on the things that make the dream happen – things like new customer acquisition, market studies, team building, innovative labor management strategies, b2b networking, etc. We recently chatted with a customer who has grown his business in one year from 0 to 25 employees, and acquired 30 customers. How did he do it? He attends a lot of business networking events and meets other business owners. He said if he has a prospect he wants to meet, he can always make a connection with someone who knows someone, who knows the prospect, that can arrange a meeting. Take time every day to work “on” your business instead of always working “in” your business. Get your dream back.
  2. Forgetting who’s the boss. It’s not easy to manage employees, especially remote employees. You want to trust them. You may want them to like you. Most importantly, you want them to be on the jobsite on time and working hard to serve your customer. Unfortunately, that’s not always how it is. We have talked about “Trust, but verify” before. Remote employees need an accountability system to insure that your work is getting done, and you are paying accurate time. Some employees will buck any type of accountability and make your implementation efforts very difficult. The best small business owners are fair and firm. They lay out clear expectations that are fair, and have no problems being firm when employees fail to meet them. It’s a big key to small business growth.
  3. Having a “know-it-all’ versus a “learn-it-all” attitude. This is a play from Microsoft’s playbook over the last 4 years under new leadership. Microsoft was headed towards irrelevance as new competition like Apple, Google and Amazon took the lead. Their new CEO, Satya Nadella, turned things around with his “learn-it-all” philosophy. He says that companies need to keep an open mind, and that “learn-it-all” companies will always beat the “know-it-alls” in the end. We have customers tell us the same thing. They constantly read business books, trade journals, watch videos to learn new solutions to old problems, and gather feedback from their customers. They never stop being a student. It’s dangerous when your mind is closed and you don’t think you can learn anything more, even if it’s from your competitors.

Perhaps you have other ideas that can stunt your business growth. Or maybe you have a great tip or two that have helped your business grow. We’d love to hear about your experiences. Email us at

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