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“It’s fine to celebrate success but it is more important to heed the lessons of failure.” –Bill Gates

I have made enough mistakes as an entrepreneur, some of them quite costly. Then recently, I bought the April issue of  Entrepreneur magazine and it contains an article that mirrors some of my mistakes. Here is a chance to learn from five common entrepreneur blunders, hopefully, you can avoid them.

#1: Choosing the wrong team – choosing the wrong team will result in not only lost income and time, but also in depleted morale. Choose people with varying skill sets, people who share common values and have the ability to trust each other in tough situations.

Mistake #2: Waiting for perfect when good will do – the longer you take to launch, the longer you go without money streaming in. Come up with the simplest, basic version of your product or service that gets the idea across and try to find someone you can sell it to. Then, continue building.

Mistake #3: Bad pricing – if you don’t have an accurate understanding of your costs, you won’t price your products correctly. However, setting price based purely on costs could yield a price that is either higher or lower than customer’s perceived value. Neither is good for your business. Set price based on your customer’s perceptions of value.

Mistake #4: Being cheap about marketing – it’s not about just being mean with money, but also with your time. Marketing doesn’t happen by accident; rather, it is intentional, consistent, and systematic. It shouldn’t be something you do sporadically whenever the flow is slow. To thrive, you need a marketing plan that lays out activities for the week, month and year.

Mistake #5: Not understanding technology – if you utilize technology correctly, you can do more, better and faster. If you are not technical, take some “tech” classes to gain some expertise.

©2014 David Waweru

Credit: Entrepreneur, April 2014

David Waweru

Author David Waweru

Writer, entrepreneur, trainer and consultant. Founder of Booktalk Africa and Will to Win Global. Member of the UNESCO Expert Facility on the 2005 Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions. Director at the Sports, Arts and Culture Sector Board, Kenya Private Sector Alliance.

More posts by David Waweru

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