Not everyone has the experience of owning a business in Malaysia. There are many young entrepreneurs trying out to start a business in hopes of success. While it is very ambitious to do so, there are many pitfalls and mistakes that you want to avoid. Here are the mistakes to avoid when starting a business in Malaysia.
Mistakes to avoid when starting a business in Malaysia
1. Not Doing a Business Plan
If I had even just fifty cents for every time someone asked me “Is this a good business idea?” over the years, I’d be a wealthy person. The problem is unless I write a business plan, I have no idea – and you won’t, either. That’s the main purpose of a business plan. There are other good reasons, too; see 5 Reasons for Writing a Business Plan to learn more.
Yes, it’s time-consuming and demands a lot of research, but investing time now will save you so much time and money later.
2. Doing What You Love
“Do what you love” is a piece of business advice that’s been repeated often. However, for many people, it’s a big business mistake.
The reality is there are a whole lot of people out there who love things they’re not good at. Bet you can name several you to know off hand. The person who thinks she’s a great cook — but isn’t. The person who thinks he can fix pretty well anything — but can’t. My official advice for starting a business? Don’t do what you love; do what you’re good at and what people will pay you (well) for. It’s not as catchy, but it’s a whole lot more profitable — and isn’t making a profit the reason you’re opening a business?
3. Not Doing Any Market Research
I see increasing numbers of people starting businesses without bothering to do any of this – and then being heartbroken when their new business, which they’ve invested so much time and money in, collapses. Test your products and service first before you start a business. If you don’t, you have no idea if people are even going to want to buy them. You may think you make the tastiest pierogi in all the world. But will anyone else?
4. Not Making Sure You Have Enough Money
Ninety-five per cent of businesses will not make money when they first open and a large proportion of new businesses will not make significant money for years. (The exception, the five per cent that makes money when they first open, is for businesses that are actually just “carry-overs”, employees who become contractors, a fairly common practice in industries such as IT.)
This means you (and your family) have to have enough money to live on while your new business is getting established, as well as enough money for the business to survive and grow. Not getting the money to do this lined up before you start your small business is a serious business mistake.
Small business financing of some kind is the most obvious way to do this, either through a traditional lender or through a non-traditional alternative. Perhaps you can qualify for a startup grant.
5. Not Taking Into Account Your Own Strengths and Weaknesses
We all have them. Unfortunately, sometimes our strengths or weaknesses don’t fit well with the business model we want to use, leading to disastrous results. For example, if you’re not a friendly, outgoing type of person with good people skills, retail is not for you. It doesn’t matter how many years you’ve dreamed of opening that ice cream parlor or bookstore, it’s not for you.
That doesn’t mean you can’t buy such a business or start one yourself, but for it to succeed, you need to be aware that working behind the counter is not something you should be doing; you’ll need to hire staff right away.
6) Not Understanding What You’re Actually Selling
Helena Rubinstein, the first self-made female millionaire, didn’t become rich selling face cream; she became rich selling beauty. (“There are no ugly women,” she used to say, “only lazy ones”.) If your new business is going to be successful, you need to know what you’re actually selling and craft your unique selling proposition accordingly.
Building a successful business can not be done by a single person alone. Surround yourself with people who can support you and experienced so they can help you. Not only that, but do not be afraid of failure and make sure to stand up after falling down.
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