Many factors contribute to a failing business. A good business owner can look at the books, sales, leads, and runway and determine the status of their operation. But a good business owner can also look at their business and determine whether they are impacting their business in a bad way. When you start a business, you don’t set out to ruin your efforts, but over time, you might not realize how much negative impact you are having on your operation. If things aren’t going as great as you had hoped and planned and you’ve taken a hard look at the facts, you might come to find that you might not be as great a business owner as you had once thought. Are you ruining your business? Here’s how you can tell.

You Spend Money Before You Make it

During the startup phase, it is not uncommon for businesses to blow through capital faster than you can say “payroll!” It is the stage in which most businesses run the greatest risk of failure. It’s not that the idea or operation wasn’t a success, but that the money ran out. If you want to avoid any further or future issues with your business, look at how fast you are running through the money. Are you spending money before you even get it? Is your business living on credit? Some foresight is needed to be able to determine when cashand more capital will come into the business, but if you are just winging things on a hope and a prayer, you need to slow your roll and find out how you can save money, or change the way you are doing things.

You Don’t Think You Need Organization Tools

Because money might be tight, you might be making horrible decisions about how to spend the little money you do have, or that is left. It’s often easy to glaze over expensive ticket items, especially software, in favor of free or near-free options, but when it comes to software, the proof is in the pudding: good software costs money. Let’s say you are looking for software to manage your coworking spaceand you think you can just run spreadsheets and online calendar requests to get started; well, you’ll find out fast that you need a robust management system to clock in and out clients, track spending and rentals, insurance, and more. Finding affordable options are better than using the wrong solution for a problem. Reorganize your budget to ensure you have the right tools for the job.

You Don’t Think You Need Help

This is one of the most common mistakesentrepreneurs make. Don’t fool yourself into thinking you can do everything on your own. At some point your business will be at risk because of something you didn’t or couldn’t do. You’ll find, as most business owners do, that you cannot make time in the day for everything and your business will start to suffer for it. Cross of bookkeeping, accounting, inventory tracking, scheduling, and client booking from your to-do list and get help or the proper software to manage those pieces. There’s no need for you to personally take the call of every potential client. Get the help that will represent your business and brand and let out the sign of relief that you have been holding in for so long.

Running a business is a lot of work, but it can also be a lot of fun if you are being truthful about the amount of work you can take on, in the amount of time you can do it, and that you have the tools, resources, and capital to make your business thrive. Shoestring budgets means cutting corners, but good choices can accompany even the worst budget so that your business gets what it needs to survive and be successful. If you are guilty of overworking, overspending, and cutting corners to save a buck, stop it right now. Your business can’t continue to do well under those conditions. It’s not about being savvy, it’s about playing with fire. Want to be a good business owner? Stop doing these things and you’ll stop ruining your business.

Contributing Author