A recent survey amongst some top business leaders reveals some of the worst business advice they have ever received when they were first starting a business. This is information you can learn from to keep motivated pursuing your business passion.
These are the best pieces of bad business advice not to take, just make sure not to take any of it like the entrepreneurs below:
Don’t do it. “Possibly the most heart-crushing, tear-jerking thing anyone has ever said to me was, ‘Don’t pursue your passion.’ Not many people can make a living off their creative passions, but I proved them wrong by working hard and never letting other people’s opinions affect my life. Now, you can view my work in prominent places in the Washington, D.C. metro area — and on television.” -Angela Pan, Angela B Pan Photography.Give customers what they want. “While taking client feedback is critical, giving customers what they want — instead of what serves their lives and businesses — is a copout. I remember the Henry Ford quote: ‘If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.’ Instead, I worked incredibly hard to educate my audience and persuade them. In real life, the customer is not always right.” -Kelly Azevedo, She’s Got SystemsNever turn down a paying customer. “While the goal of every entrepreneur is to make as much money as humanly possible, saying no to some paying customers may actually get you there faster. You see, in today’s ever-connected world of technology, it becomes paramount that you sell products only to those customers who can obtain an advantage or benefit. Those who can’t will blame you and cause unnecessary headaches down the road.” -Charles Gaudet, Predictable ProfitsDon’t get involved — it’s too saturated. “One thing I’ve learned, as a serial entrepreneur, is that every industry is ‘saturated.’ I was told not to pursue my passion for incentivized marketing, due to saturation and other challenges in the industry. Since our launch in 2009, we have redefined the incentivized marketing space and become a leader in the industry. How? Through innovation — a better solution or product always exists!” -Fehzan Ali, Adscend Media LLCDon’t quit your day job. “My company pairs magazines with CDs and DVDs to create packages for super-fans. When my business partner and I told people we were creating a product to redefine the print and music industries, people laughed. One person said we would have more success launching a travel agency with the Titanic and Hindenburg! But by selling more than $10 million in product in two years, we got the last laugh.” -Brittany Hodak, ZinePakDon’t be too niche. “We had a vision that would disrupt healthcare education but wanted to focus, build market share, prove the model in one vertical and then expand. But the advice we often got was that we were too niche — and, while that is true, we were able to learn quickly from one focus area, gain credibility by dominating it and then replicate that for other markets to continue to grow quickly.” -Shradha Agarwal, ContextMediaStick to your business plan. “When you are first starting out, there is a 100 percent chance you’ll encounter obstacles and opportunities that no business plan could account for. The only way to deal with them is to be flexible. We’ve never had a business plan, and we’re better for it. We have goals in mind, but we don’t follow a rigid framework to achieve them.” -Jim Belosic, Pancakes Laboratories/ShortStack
Always follow your gut and stand your ground. Take the time to do the research and make the best educated decisions for your business you feel possible. This will save a ton of money and other resources down the line. And lastly, always be adaptable. This is one of the only ways to survive and succeed when starting a business.
What is the worst business advice you ever received?