How to Get Over Screw-Ups in Your Business
Spoiler alert: making mistakes in business is inevitable.
How do you get back on that money-making train after a big screw up?
I’m here to talk about how to get your confidence and mojo back.
There will always be broken links. You will send out the wrong emails. You’ll annoy people. You'll get your prices wrong. That's a really big one. You'll screw up your launches. You'll screw up your marketing, and you know what? It's all okay.
It’s how you pick up the pieces that matters.
The 3 Most Common Areas to Make Mistakes in Business as an Entrepreneur
I've noticed that a lot of entrepreneurs tend to make business screw-ups in three common areas.
- Investing in the wrong things
- Pricing your products and services wrong.
It’s common for entrepreneurs to internalize these really normal problems and make it mean something about themselves, like maybe I'm not good at business, maybe it's a sign from the universe to quit.
It can be really tempting to just throw it all in and just not risk it anymore.
Before you do that, stop. Mistakes are a rite of passage and can actually be important milestones to celebrate.
If you’re feeling sick and anxious, let’s do a reframe.
Business Screw Up #1: Boundaries
We all know that we should have good boundaries with clients, but it's really easy to screw this up. Why do so many entrepreneurs have a tough time setting boundaries with clients?
Maybe you’re conditioned to be nice to people. You might be a people pleaser, who feels like a mean bitch for saying no or putting boundaries in place.
I have struggled with boundaries but without good money boundaries, clients can take advantage of you. They can drain you, even if they don't mean to. Your resentment can build, you can get burnt out, and maybe end up quitting your business.
Here are some things that I see around boundaries all the time that are really small, but they add up.
- Running over allotted time with your clients. You might think that you're being generous in giving them more time and space, but it's not always the best way to serve people. It can be really overwhelming for them and for you.
- Overdelivering. Maybe you let clients add more work without extra pay. This is known as scope creep. Oh, I'll just do that for them. Oh, I'll just do that for them, and then before you know it, you're super burnt out.
- Being too available for your clients. Maybe people are messaging you day and night wanting your support and help.
Most of the time, these boundary problems come from a place of wanting to be generous and available, but it can have a detrimental effect on your business. You get burnt out and don’t have the bandwidth for anything else.
When you're overdelivering, you might find that you attract clients who still feel like it's never enough. They’re never happy. That sucks.
So, good boundaries are a business essential, but it takes trial and error to learn them.
What's the biggest boundary violation that's causing you stress at the moment?
Is it around invoicing? Time? Is it people paying late? What can you automate? What can you put in place? How can you teach yourself to say no?
And don't worry, I've got tons of resources including scripts to help you at the end of this post.
Setting boundaries doesn't make you mean. It's a necessary part of being in business, and it can make your business interactions feel nice and clean and clear, and your clients feel like they're being taken care of.
It's never too late to renegotiate your boundaries and fix this. Start with a thing that stresses you out the most.
Business Screw Up #2: Investing in the wrong things
This one is so painful. At the start of your business especially, you don't necessarily feel secure enough in your decision-making.
You don't know what to do. So, you jump on a course because everyone else is buying it, or you think you need a big sexy website. This is where you need discernment about where to invest your money
I see a lot of people get into trouble with this and get into a ton of debt.
It’s important to invest in your business, but making decisions out of FOMO, can lead to investment in the wrong things, things like hiring the wrong staff, taking business advice from the wrong people, or signing up for things that you don't really need.
Learning the power of discernment will save you money and it will supercharge your success because you’ll start to attract more of what you want because you're clearer.
Here's a tip for you. Before I invest in anything, I ask myself two questions. Firstly, “do I really need this right now?” just to see if I’m investing out of FOMO.
The second question I ask is “how many of my own products and services do I need to sell to make this money back?”
Maybe, you really don't need it right now, you're just getting caught up in the marketing hype, and sometimes it's not actually going to help you make money in your own business.
We've all been there. Please forgive yourself for any of those past money decisions. It doesn't mean that you shouldn't invest in your business going forward. You can just learn from it
When I make a bad investment decision, I say to myself, "Lucky we're rich". I started saying that right at the start of my business, way before I was making money because it made me laugh when I made a bad decision and it puts it into perspective.
Nothing's forever. There's always more money.
Business Screw Up #3: Undercharging
This is something that as a money mindset mentor, I can help you with. When you underprice what you do, you get burnt out because you have to serve so many people.
You feel resentful because you're giving too much and you're not receiving in return, and it can get you stuck in a scarcity cycle because you have to take on clients just for the money, and it becomes a self-fulfilling thing.
Before you get bummed out that you've made some pricing mistakes, know, that you're in charge. You're the boss. You can change your prices anytime you like. Prices are just made up. You can increase your prices however you like. There are no rules around it.
If you're getting great results, if you've got a big long waitlist and you know that you're giving more value than is reflected in your prices, you're allowed to change your prices.
You're allowed to renegotiate with clients, no matter how long you've worked with them. You're allowed to say no. You're allowed to push back and tell people that extra work is out of scope, that you'll be charging if they want it fast.
It's your business.
There are customers at every single price point. You don't have to undercharge because you're worried that nobody will work with you anymore. It's totally safe for you to charge great prices.
How does it feel to affirm that:
- It's safe for me to charge good prices.
- It's safe for me to increase my prices.
Pricing problems are not permanent. I've got a great resource for you at denisedt.com/increase.
Come and get your free step-by-step guide to increasing your prices with integrity and class. I’ve made it super easy for you.
How do you get your confidence back when you've made these mistakes?
There are a couple of things that you can do to instantly feel better no matter how big or small the mistake was.
Regain Confidence Step #1 Reframe your thinking
Mistakes are just part of your apprenticeship, your learning curve as an entrepreneur. You need to be able to take those risks as an entrepreneur.
So, if you've screwed up something recently, reframe it as an important rite of passage.
Everybody makes these mistakes. Perfection isn't the goal. Perfection isn't going to make you money.
Showing up consistently, trying things, telling people how you can help them even imperfectly, that's the way you make money. Not by being perfect.
Regain Confidence Step #2 Forgiveness
Forgive everybody involved, including yourself. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself chewing over it every night, at 3am for the next year. I want you to let it go. Make a conscious decision to forgive yourself.
It's important to release the resentment so you can move on.
You can cut the chords. You can burn shit if you want to. You can get as woo-woo as you like, but it's really good to let it go so it doesn't become part of who you are.
Regain Confidence Step #3 Take Responsibility
If you’ve made a mistake, you have to own it. I have had people in my business make big mistakes and not tell me about it. I was way more upset about that than the mistake itself.
If you've screwed something up, admit to it, apologize and move on so you don't have to think about it anymore. Sometimes that energy can feel really gross.
If you have to apologize to your community for screwing something up, just do it. You can hide under the covers and hug your cat, but you need to release it so you can get up and do it again. It's totally fine.
Regain Confidence Step #4 Look for the Lesson
This is going to help you reframe everything. When you look for the lesson it becomes a really useful event for yourself and other people. Whenever I screw up, I think, this’ll be such a good chapter for my next book.
Everything is useful, especially if it can be a cautionary tale for other people, or you can share what you've learned.
Here’s a funny example. I recently got a ton of photos done, and I had this really cute jumpsuit with a dropped crotch. When they came back, in every single photo I look like I have this giant schlong or a saggy diaper because of the dropped crotch.
Instead of feeling upset about the waste of time, energy and money I made schlong lemonade out of those photos. I made a funny video, and I used it because there's a lesson in everything.
There's content in everything. You can write cautionary tales. You can write about it on your blog. You can share it in videos. You can make a song out of it. You can share and help other people with what you've learned. Never buy dropped crotch jumpsuits.
Everything that you have screwed up, you can learn from it, and of course, don't just make schlong lemonade.
You can do practical things, like changing up your client policies so it doesn't happen again. Change your T&Cs so it doesn't happen again. Nothing is wasted.
Nothing is forever either, and this too shall pass. You’ll come out of this so much more experienced and wise.
Even if it feels shitty right now, even if you feel bad, even if you've screwed up in ways that have hurt other people, apologize, let it go. Nothing is irreversible.
Even if you feel like you've screwed up your pricing, remember, it doesn't have to be forever.
Even if you've screwed up some boundaries, it doesn't have to be forever. It's your business. You're allowed to change anything you like. Your business, your rules.
If you’ve made any of these common mistakes about being overgenerous and not charging enough, you can increase your prices literally this week.
In my free resource, I'll give you word-for-word scripts on how to have tricky pricing conversations with your clients, plus a really simple strategy to increase your prices without freaking out, without losing all of your customers. Go to denisedt.com/increase.
I hope you feel better about your mistakes. I know you're going to remember the schlong lemonade for a long time!
Remember this, this too will pass, and it's your time, and you're ready for the next step.
Get my Ultimate Guide to Pricing
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