By Evan Vitale
Starting and owning your own business can be an extremely exciting adventure. However, before you start to dream of endless beach vacations and expensive cars, let’s take note of a few common business myths.
Myth No. 1: If everything goes as planned, my business should be turning a profit within six months.
Guess what? It never goes as planned and, sometimes, businesses don’t truly turn a profit for several years.
Myth No. 2: The government is always handing out grants and money to small businesses.
Nope, not true. An Small Business Administration (SBA) loan is not a business loan or grant. It is a loan that is “backed” by government funds. You’ll need to apply for one through a local financial institution, just as you would apply for a regular business loan.
Myth No. 3: I can pay myself as much as I want!
Unfortunately, this myth isn’t true either. In fact, the more cash you put in your pocket, the more it might hurt your business down the road. Yes, you should pay yourself a regular salary, but you should invest a great deal of any profit back into your business. A friend of mine paid himself once a month, but only after expenses, invoices and employees were paid. Even then, he paid himself a very small amount and invested back into his company. Later, after being in business for several years, was he able to pay himself a decent salary and, if all went well, a little bonus at the end of the year.
Myth No. 4: My product or service will set itself.
False. No product or service sells itself. You’ll need to constantly work on marketing your products or services year round, even if your company is doing well. For example, think of how many ads and television commercials you see, read and hear about every day. Products that are No. 1 in their market continue to advertise and inform customers.
Don’t fall for business myths. If you think something sounds too good to be true, then it probably is!