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Business Intelligence Authors: Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Dana Gardner, Pat Romanski, William Schmarzo

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Avoiding Startup Pitfalls: An Entrepreneur's Guide

Avoiding Startup Pitfalls: An Entrepreneur's Guide

CLEVELAND, June 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Sidestepping the startup pitfalls so common in business is crucial to an entrepreneur's success. Savvy entrepreneurs avoid these startup pitfalls by capitalizing on the experience of others, including tapping business mentors to help blaze their way.

(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20060209/CLJUMPSTARTLOGO )

"Falling prey to common startup pitfalls often hinders new businesses during their critical early growth stages," said Tiffan Clark, Vice President of Marketing at JumpStart Inc., the venture development organization behind IdeaCrossing (https://www.ideacrossing.org/), a free online resource that connects entrepreneurs with investors. "Having an experienced business mentor in your corner can help you to avoid the startup pitfalls that so often trip up entrepreneurs."

Business mentors have been in your shoes before and know first-hand what it takes to launch a successful business venture -- as well as what costly mistakes to avoid. Business mentors can take many possible shapes and forms. They might be a retired CEO in your industry looking to provide a young entrepreneur with their expertise or an academic who wants to stay involved in the business community. Whatever their background, tap into their experience and ask about some pitfalls they think are common among new entrepreneurs. If they're an entrepreneur themselves, ask what they would have done differently when building their business. When it comes to finding a mentor, online business communities such as IdeaCrossing (http://www.ideacrossing.org/) can help streamline the process of connecting you with an active business mentor.

Here are some specific startup pitfalls that business mentors can help entrepreneurs avoid:

-- Tackling a business you don't understand. You might be a quick learner, but you'll still spend time climbing a learning curve if you enter into an entirely new field. As a general rule, go with what you know -- and if you don't know it, utilize the resources of someone who does.

-- Funding faux pas. Don't waste time and money securing the wrong funding from the wrong people; it pays to build investor relationships correctly from the beginning. Business mentors can help you to source potential angel and venture groups that have an interest in your particular niche.

-- Not selling from the start. Startups often focus all their efforts on getting everything just right, from funding arrangements to design details. Don't forget to make sales your priority -- bringing in critical cash flow and customers early on. Tap your business mentor's network to build a customer target list and get you that first meeting.

-- Missing the big picture. Entrepreneurs often zero in on one area of their new enterprise -- usually the area where they're strongest. But all aspects of your business should grow in unison; from finance and marketing, to operations and staffing.

-- Starting from scratch. Seasoned business mentors will tell you that buying an undervalued operation and building it up will ultimately save you valuable time, money and energy.

-- Skimping on salaries. Great businesses are built by standout people, so take the time and spend the money necessary to build a solid management team and employee talent pool.

About IdeaCrossing

IdeaCrossing is a free Internet resource available to all individuals and organizations with an interest in supporting and promoting entrepreneurial activity. IdeaCrossing helps entrepreneurs find the assistance and investment capital they need to launch promising new business ventures. Additionally, IdeaCrossing serves the Angel and Venture Capital communities by identifying and screening new investment opportunities. Simply stated, IdeaCrossing is about creating the connections that build businesses.

For more information contact Tiffan Clark at [email protected] or call 216.363.3400.

Links: http://www.ideacrossing.org/http://www.jumpstartinc.org/https://www.idea...

IdeaCrossing

CONTACT: Tiffan Clark of JumpStart Inc., +1-216-363-3400,
[email protected], for IdeaCrossing

Web site: http://www.ideacrossing.org/

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