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If you are running a small business, you want “smooth sailing,” right? Good sales, consistent profits, growth, and no setbacks. Well, unfortunately, the path for most if not all small businesses includes some “bumps in the road;” small business setbacks. The harsh reality is that about 20 percent of new businesses fail during their first two years of operations, and 65 percent during their first 10 years, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. But don’t let those figures scare you. There is plenty of success to be found with good planning and hard work. 

The Challenges of Running a Small Business 

Running a small business can be challenging, but it also can be highly rewarding. One of the challenges is dealing with the normal ups and downs of business—good months and slow months. Embrace that reality and press forward. Sometimes, you’ll get your feelings hurt by a rude customer or an unreliable supplier, but remember that others are solid, and press on. Know that generally, your business will cost more than you expect so plan accordingly. Know that running a small business takes a lot of effort and that sometimes you will work very long hours. And know that success takes time. As the old expression goes, “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” You must plan for the long haul and know that success requires overcoming some small business setbacks.

What Are Some Small Business Setbacks? 

Here are some typical small business setbacks that you can plan to avoid: 

  • Having a business that isn’t designed to grow. 
  • Hiring the wrong people.  
  • Losing key team members.  
  • Losing key clients. 
  • Having weak and ineffective marketing. 
  • Not having a sufficiently strong product or service offering. 
  • Having insufficient cash flow is perhaps the biggest challenge for a small business. 

How to Overcome Small Business Setbacks 

Use these tips to overcome small business setbacks. First, recognize and acknowledge setbacks when they occur. Don’t deny them or simply hope that they will go away on their own. Spread the organizational attitude that failure is not an option. Second, put setbacks into perspective. Assess their seriousness and their business impact so that you can act appropriately. Third, don’t dwell on the problem. Rather, diagnose what went wrong and determine how to address the problem. Focus on what you can control. Fourth, consider that every setback can be a learning experience for your organization and use them to make your business stronger and better. Fifth, continue to move forward, adjusting along the way. Sixth, find others that will encourage you and spread encouragement throughout your organization. Seventh, get expert outside assistance to aid you. 

How to Grow a Successful Business 

Growing a successful business and overcoming small business setbacks includes understanding and analyzing your competition, being organized, keeping detailed records, being focused on important objectives, being creative, providing great customer service, being consistently good operationally, and getting expert help.

Get the Outside Expert Assistance That You Need 

Choose Palmetto Payroll, with offices in Columbia and Charleston, SC. We are your local expert source for payroll and back-office operations for your business. We serve over 300 businesses throughout South Carolina with expert payroll, tax filing, tax depositing, Human Resource services, timekeeping, and management reporting services.