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CAUTION: 5 Things to Avoid with Your Small Business

franchise caution

There are a million things that you should be doing to get your business up and running like a pro; get active on Twitter, have great content on your blog, connect with people in your field, network, etc. Sometimes it seems that as long as you're working hard and doing everything possible, you will gain success. However, there are things that any entrepreneur should avoid doing, things that will actually hurt your company that must be avoided at all costs. Check out some of these pitfalls below, courtesy of The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur Blog.

Share the Wealth!

Idea wealth, that is. Many entrepreneurs are too scared to talk about their new idea because they think that somebody else will steal it! In more cases than not, nobody has the time, energy, resources or PASSION to turn that idea into a reality. Got an idea? Tell people about it! You'll beshocked at some of the great feedback you get.

Thanks to: Katie Shea of FUNK-tional Footwear.

Not Having A Business Plan

I learned that having a Business Plan is like having a Road Map, when I first started my business I did not have one, and so I seemed to be going nowwhere, and then a wise person told me to do one which I did, and all of a sudden the road to success became so much clearer, and as I followed the plan more and more opportunities for my business came my way. So I say to everyone now, get a business plan, include Marketing into your plan and follow the plan.

Thanks to: Robbie Motter of Robbie Motter dba/ContactsUnlimited.

Family "HELP"!

An entrepreneur's biggest mistake is accepting help from family particularly in the form of lawyer, accountant or partial partner. Entrepreneur's, you must separate yourself from the business...you are not the business! You need experts that will focus on the success of the business not worry about taking care of you. Enjoy family dinners and events without your business team in tow.

Thanks to: Vicki Donlan of VickiDonlan.

Avoiding A Closed Mindset

I'm lucky that I read Carol Dweck's book MINDSET: THE NEW PSYCHOLOGY OF SUCCESS before starting my social media marketing company. Dweck's premise is the need to have an open mindset -- be willing to fail -- in order to be able to move forward to success. Whenever something was difficult for me, I didn't give up. Instead I kept pushing through until I overcame the difficulty. Cultivating an open mindset can make a huge difference for any entrepreneur. Read this book and practice its tenets!

Thanks to: Phyllis Zimbler Miller of Miller Mosaic Power Marketing.

Making Exception To The Rules

In my biz, I am dealing with the public, clients and patients as they come through the door. Most are great and I try to treat everyone fairly and the same.

But there were times early on, that I let people talk me into doing something that I couldn't offer to everyone. Like picking up a patient. Well, that turned into picking up the patient every time, then picking up the patient and hauling client to work, and then the neighbor wants me to do the same for her...

So set boundaries.

Thanks to: Andy Mathis of Andy Mathis Art Co..

To see the full 100, check out The Biggest Business Mistakes to Avoid via The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur.

Before Buying a Franchise Identify Your TRUE Investment

Your approach as a potential franchise buyer is to identify the real investment dollars you’ll need to get the franchise to profitability. The initial source of this information is Item 7 in the FDD. Item 7 is a schedule that details the estimated investment in the franchise. This schedule includes the cost of various items, including: the initial franchise fee, training related expenses, rent, insurance, professional fees for legal and accounting services, supplies, equipment, licenses and permits and additional working capital. Depending upon the specific franchise, there may be added categories. When reviewing the Item 7 schedule it’s important to know that franchisors are not required to list every type of fee or expense that might be part of the investment in the franchise but rather the likely investment needed to start the franchise. As you work to establish your investment number keep in mind the words “estimated” and “typical.” Item 7 is a guide, and as such, you should use this information accordingly.

The Best Senior Care Franchises

Before we get to the individual business profiles, however, a quick background on what senior care and home care businesses do and why they serve such an acute need: An increasing number of elderly Americans want the opportunity to remain at home as they age. Unfortunately, to do so, many of these individuals require personal assistance beyond what their families can provide. The best senior care franchises and homecare franchises manage to meet this need cost- effectively -- to the great relief of worried family members -- by providing compassionate non-medical care, such as transportation assistance, light housekeeping, meal preparation, companionship, assistance with taking medication, and, in certain cases, medical services.