We entrepreneurs love to lie. Shocker, huh? There's nothing particularly earth shattering about that revelation, but it's the specific lies that entrepreneurs choose to tell, that are the most interesting. These lies aren't specifically directed at customers, it has more to do with the lies business owners tell in order to pump ourselves up. These are the 3 biggest, most common ones I've come across over the years:
1.We inflate our numbers. Sometimes a lot. Whether it's to impress potential investors, other business owners, or coveted employees, we exaggerate how well we're doing. The funniest part is, it's all easily refuted. Anyone who's going to take a deeper dive into your financials is easily going to see how you're really doing when they get the official documentation. This is definitely a case of taking everything you hear, and dividing it in half.
2. We never have to hustle for new business. It just comes to us. This one is my favorite. I laugh out loud when I hear this one. I'm not sure why entrepreneurs try to perpetuate the lie that potential customers are falling all over themselves, dying to give said entrepreneur their business, but I hear this one a lot. Maybe some entrepreneurs think it makes them look more successful. In reality, it makes them look silly and amateurish. In this day and age, when it's difficult to get your message out there, everyone is hustling as hard as they can to not only get, but keep business. That's why companies have entire departments devoted to marketing, business development, and sales. Don't believe otherwise.
3. We know what we're doing. Yeah, this one is the biggest lie of all. We have no idea what the hell were doing. There's sometimes no rhyme or reason as to why some business strategies work and why others fail. Sometimes you have everything on your side: funding, market conditions, proven model, a killer team, and you fail. On the other hand, we also live in a world where entrepreneurs have figured out how to build multi million dollar corporations selling water and gourmet coffee to the public. So none of us really know what we're doing. We take our best guess and hope for the best.
So why lie? I suppose in a world where image and positioning can go a long way, it's advantageous to some entrepreneurs to lie as much as they can. But here's a concept... instead of spending all of that energy on lying, how about finding new ways to build a better business?
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