I am all about change- particularly positive change. Some people live their entire lives passing up opportunities that they later regret – sometimes things that they don’t even realize. So, I wondered what are the opportunities that entrepreneurs regret passing up most?
Our businesses are like our babies.They are our idea, our money, our time. And in the same way that we as parents sometimes have regrets about the way we have raised our children, entrepreneurs also have regrets about some of the things they have done in their businesses. Some of the most common regrets that entrepreneurs have shared are:
- Not leveraging their time effectively – what are the things that you’re not good at? Find someone who has experience in that field (someone that enjoys it and can do it with their full potential). Use your talents to do what you love and you’ll never do a days work in your life!
- Lacking confidence! – Move forward and don’t doubt. Be willing to make quick decisions based on imperfect information. If it doesn’t quite work out, pivot. Planning is all well and good, but implementation is what gets results.
- Not learning from their mistakes – We have heard this numerous times. Mistakes are really just opportunities for learning and growth. Remember the mistakes you make and try not to repeat them.
- Believing in “natural talent”– Hire for character, train for skill! The most experienced candidate isn’t necessarily the most qualified one. Many entrepreneurs regret believing in “natural talent.” The truth is that anything can be learned – by those with the humility to understand and accept that they don’t know everything.
- Not assessing risk carefully enough – The excitement of a new business or project can sometimes lead to a lack of thoroughness in assessing what could go wrong. Make sure you do your due diligence with new projects.
- Not holding others accountable – Too many of us are worried about being liked, rather than being respected. As a consequence we are sometimes reticent to hold our employees accountable for their actions. What we very often fail to grasp is that the actions of our employees directly affect the profitability of our businesses and therefore the financial well being of our own families.
- Getting in the way of their companies expansion – Don’t ever let your company just “be” – allow your business to expand – where you’re at is never enough. When you stumble on a possibility, pick up the ball and run with it! Ask yourself what else is possible that you have not yet considered.
- Being too hard on themselves and not giving themselves enough credit – Judgment is one of the biggest killers of our creative capacities. So live without regret.
- Sitting on ideas too long – Don’t wait too long to launch. If you’re not embarrassed by your first version, you’ve launched too late.
- Not delegating – Being an effective leader doesn’t mean doing everything! Surround yourself with great people and give them the space to excel.
- Not setting reasonable deadlines – If a deadline is too tight, it risks a project being delivered incomplete, but if the deadline stretches out too far, the team can lose focus.
- Not Trusting your team – You’ve picked the best people – let them do what they’re good at – get out of their way.
- Not Seeking guidance from a coach or mentor – Even if you believe you’re the smartest person in the room, have the humility to understand that you don’t know everything, and be willing to use other people as sounding boards.
So learn from other people’s mistakes (or regrets), you’ll get to where you want to go a lot quicker and with less pain!!