Classic Mistakes

December 16th, 2008 by Admin

by Christopher Gergen & Gregg Vanourek

Here we offer three blogs we penned for Inc.com, one on how entrepreneurship has some pitfalls that budding entrepreneurs should guard against, another on why entrepreneurs should pay special attention to creating their organizational culture, and the other on how entrepreneurs should go about recognizing opportunities in the marketplace.

“Classic Mistakes, Part 1: The Over-the-Top Entrepreneur,” Inc.com, August 29, 2008.

We’ve all seen data on the high failure rate for new enterprises. But it’s not always external factors that doom an enterprise. Sometimes it’s the entrepreneur him or herself. With this in mind, we will focus our blog entries on avoiding classic entrepreneurial mistakes—highlighted by revealing stories and real-world examples. Through it, we will tease out the lessons of entrepreneurial excellence.

The essential traits of an entrepreneur—ambition, optimism, feistiness, confidence, independence, tolerance for risk—have potential downsides that can undermine success. As such, knowing what to avoid is essential.
Based on our research and hard-earned experiences, we offer up the following shortlist of classic pitfalls that sabotage many entrepreneurs.

To view the entire blog, click here.

“Classic Mistakes, Part 2: Ignoring Your Company’s Culture,” Inc.com, September 3, 2008.

For an entrepreneur consumed with the countless tasks of start-up, it can be tempting to ignore culture–to allow, in other words, the new enterprise to organically develop its own culture without deliberate attention. But that can be a big mistake. Developing a culture of engagement and excellence, while notoriously difficult, is critical for organizational performance in the long run.

Entrepreneurs are not immune from the war for talent that has been raging in our economy for decades. Today’s leading organizations make bold investments to attract, develop, and retain the best and brightest, recognizing the link between culture and talent–and how they drive performance.

To view the entire blog, click here.

“Classic Mistakes, Part 3: Opportunity Recognition,”
Inc.com, September 10, 2008.

A defining characteristic of entrepreneurship is opportunity recognition. The successful entrepreneur is constantly alert, looking for new ideas, trends, and opportunities to do things better or differently. But how much is art versus science?
Though there is a natural flow to this that sometimes clicks on its own, there is also a process that can help entrepreneurs recognize, assess, and exploit opportunities. This begins with awakening to possibility, and it helps to adopt what has been called a “beginner’s mind.”

To view the entire blog, click here.

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Posted in career development, Life Entrepreneurs, Musings, Personal Development | 1 Comment »

One Response

  1. Life Entrepreneurs Blog » Blog Archive » The Recession’s Silver Lining: A Blank Canvas Says:

    […] be difficult to raise capital or secure loans, forcing you to bootstrap. That means that avoiding classic entrepreneur mistakes and focusing on the truly important things in your business. To borrow from Guy Kawasaki, this […]

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