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The Dreaded Rookie Mistakes

Aug 17, 2007
Business refers to at least three closely related commercial topics. The first is a commercial, professional or industrial organization or enterprise, generally referred to as "a business." The second is commercial, professional, and industrial activity generally, as in "business continues to evolve as markets change." Finally, business can be used to refer to a particular area of economic activity, such as the "record business" or the "computer business"

What is a mistake: An unintentional error or misunderstanding. Certain kinds of mistakes are grounds for rescinding a contract; others are not. Mistakes are classified as unilateral or mutual. A unilateral mistake is a mistake of a material fact involving a contract made by just one of the parties. If only one of the parties is mistaken as to a material fact, the mistake is not a defense unless the other party is chargeable with knowledge of the mistake.

Even once you've got past the starting-up stage, there are still plenty mistakes to be made, and most of them are going to be made in your make-or-break year -- the first one. Here are the top Rookie Mistakes:

Too many people wait for their customers to phone, or come to the door, or whatever. They get one or two customers through luck, but nothing like enough to even begin paying their costs. These people sit around, looking at their competitors doing lots of business, and wonder what they're doing wrong.

So everyone tells you that the only way to get ahead in business is to advertise. Well, that's true, but you need to make sure that you stick to inexpensive advertising methods when you're starting out. Spending hundreds of dollars for an ad in the local newspaper might turn out to get you very few new customers, and you will have spent your entire advertising budget on it.

When you're running your own business, it can be tempting to be everyone's friend, giving discounts at the drop of a hat and making sure that you don't hassle or inconvenience anyone. That's all well and good, until you find that your Good Samaritan act has just halved your profit margin without lowering the cost to the customer by very much at all.

You'd be surprised just how common phone fears are -- if you're scared of the phone, you're not alone by any means. Many people are terrified of making phone calls, and avoid them wherever possible. I have seen more than one home business owner reduced to tears on the phone and trying desperately to hide it from the customer.

It can be tempting to think that, since you're starting out, you should just find a company or person to do every little thing you need. People seem to especially overspend on design services.

"When I asked my accountant if anything could get me out of this mess I am in now he thought for a long time and said, 'Yes, death would help'."
Robert Morley.
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