Alex Fortunati Shares Common Misconceptions About Small Business Management
Whether you’ve been running your business for a few years or you’re just getting started, there are common misconceptions about business management that hundreds of people fall prey to.
As an experienced entrepreneur and CEO, Alex Fortunati of Huntington Beach, California, has years of experience in small business management. He goes over some of the common misconceptions about managing a small business and what you need to do to avoid them.
Entrepreneurs Have More Free Time
When you first start your own business, you are likely bringing ideas and expectations about what business ownership looks like to your business. One of the greatest misconceptions about being an entrepreneur is that you will have more free time. The allure of schedule flexibility is one of the primary draws for budding entrepreneurs, but this definitely does not mean more free time, warns Alex Fortunati.
When you are starting out as a business owner, you are likely going to work longer hours, work on the weekends, and will only be able to choose which 14 to 18 hours a day you want to work. At the preliminary stages of a business, you are going to have to work hard to ensure that everything is up and running smoothly. There are a lot of sacrifices that will need to be made and from time with friends to extracurricular activities and hobbies, you are going to have to choose which one takes priority. A lot of entrepreneurs do not realize that success comes at a cost, so you need to be willing to compromise in order to succeed.
You Don’t Need Marketing
You don’t have a business if nobody knows about it. Alex Fortunati explains that a lot of older entrepreneurs fail to see the importance of a marketing strategy and this can make or break a business. A major part of your business plan should offer information on your planned marketing strategies. Marketing is a very diverse, complicated, and evolving practice that requires careful attention and thoughtful planning.
It is no longer good enough to merely have a website, as you need to find ways to drive traffic towards it. The world of social media marketing has become extremely competitive and if you are not meeting people where they are, you are going to have a very difficult time reaching your sales goals and remaining sustainable. If you don’t market your business, you don’t have one.
You Don’t Need Help
As a leader, you may feel uncomfortable showing weakness or vulnerability, but seeking help and asking questions is a strength, not a weakness. As a business leader, you set the tone for how your employees conduct themselves and being unable to recognize when you’ve made a mistake will only encourage them to hide their mistakes as well. When you show your vulnerability, you encourage everyone else to do the same. They will be more open to asking questions and to admit when they have made a mistake, says Alex Fortunati. This fosters a company culture that embraces failure as a part of success. You hire a team of experts and people you trust to be able to lean on them as much as they lean on you. You may actually find that your team will respect you more when you are willing to be open about your shortcomings.
You Need to Micromanage Your Employees
You might feel like your job as a manager is to keep everyone in line and may fall into the trap of detecting failure as opposed to rewarding success. Coming back to the notion of corporate culture, you have the ability to set the tone.
Micromanaging mistakes instead of praising success is a major misstep that many entrepreneurs make. Having consistent interaction with your team, coaching them through learning opportunities, and mentoring them when they show an interest in something new is a great way to boost morale and have people love their jobs. Corporate culture is extremely important, as it has the potential to either stagnate employees or help them thrive — you definitely want to be the latter.
Not Investing in Employees’ Professional Development
Lastly, Alex Fortunati encourages every business he works with to ensure a culture of learning. With deadlines, projects, and work always on the horizon, it can feel like a waste of time to send employees off to complete additional training, but this can be your greatest asset.
The cost of hiring someone new is immense and from training to interviewing and hiring, it is a much better investment to train your current employees to better their skills. If you have a graphic design firm and one of your designers wants to learn video editing, try and encourage them to do those courses through the company. Not only will this support the individual and their passions, but it will allow your company to have a new tool in your arsenal to better strength and grow in the future.
Alex Fortunati’s Final Thoughts
Not everyone is destined to be an entrepreneur. It takes a special kind of person to build a business from the ground up. If you do become an entrepreneur, it is important to avoid the common misconceptions about managing a small business.
By not falling into these traps, says Alex Fortunati, you are giving your start-up a fighting chance to achieve success.
This article does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editors or management of EconoTimes.