3 Ways You Might Be Sabotaging Your Business (and How To Stop)

How long have you been struggling to get a foothold, gain momentum, or start your business?

If it’s been awhile, then you need to step back and do some hard thinking about what you’re doing and NOT doing to get the results you want.

I’ve watched many entrepreneurs sabotage their business without even realizing it. Heck, I’ve done it myself.

But first, what is sabotage? Sabotage is the act of hampering or hurting property or processes. Sound familiar?

Here are three common ways you might be sabotaging your own business and how to stop it now:

1. Working with the wrong clients

I know, I know. When you’re first starting out, all you want is to make some money.  So you take on anyone who shows up at your door.

I made this mistake when I taught pilates.  I gave people price breaks, then they’d cancel frequently, show no respect for my time, and in the end I was so burned out.  The people who paid me on time, showed up early, cancelled early if they needed to, who I LOVED spending time with – now those were the people I needed to focus on.  But by the time I figured this out, I was too burned out and didn’t want to teach anymore.

So here’s the thing – if you don’t start with the end in mind, you’ll keep trading time for dollars, and taking clients who: 

  • Drain you
  • Don’t respect your time
  • Don’t pay you the prices you’re worth
  • …and who you really don’t like!

Stay focused on finding your right clients and customers, the clients who make what you do feel easy and fun. Find those people and fire the rest.

2. Hiring the wrong team (or having no team at all)

Outsourcing is all the rage now, isn’t it?.  And I’m a huge proponent of building a team as your business grows. But here’s the truth – having the wrong team is worse than having no team at all.

Do the same work you did to find your ideal customer to find your ideal team.

Before you hire someone, give them a test that will tell you how they communicate, if they are a problem solver and what they do with limited information. Decide what level of support you need and what you can afford. Put clear expectations in place and be sure to regularly evaluate performance and compensation. 

3. Sending the wrong message

Okay, this is a tough one. But you know how long you’ve been at it.  If you haven’t been hitting the “mark” or your audience hasn’t grown and you don’t have any clients…then you need to go back to the drawing board and think about your overall vision and message.

Are you selling products and services that no one seems interested in?

The easiest way to find out is to ask. Don’t be afraid, go ahead and ask friends, former customers and family members what they think of your offerings. If you want a clearer picture of what people think of your wares, consider asking your target market. 

If you’re getting emails, social media shares, new clients and an increase in traffic to your website, then you’re probably on the right track.

But if you’re not seeing growth in any of these areas that show people dig what you do, it’s time to rework your business plan.

Listen all y’all, it’s a sabotage…

So, what do you think? Are you sabotaging your business in any of these ways? It’s a little hard to admit that your business is either successful and growing or not…because of you.

But the sooner you drop your ego at the door and separate yourself from the business, the sooner you’ll have the objective point of view you need to start making smarter decisions.

Have you ever sabotaged your business? How did you stop?

Anne Samoilov

My mission is to teach you one thing. It's this: You have a message you want to share with the world, a piece of art you want to create, a business you want to start...get out of your own way and do it. Make room for your revolution and then launch it.




  1. nancy rick

    Loved this! Very succinct and helpful. I’m just taking baby steps at the moment in my new business (ad)venture, but loving the process, actually. Now if I could only find a business that supplies knitting capabilities…I’d be happy!

  2. Anne Samoilov

    My pleasure – I also find that it’s easy to start doing any one of these if you aren’t keeping in your vision clearly set in your mind. You start doing things that you think businesses should do, but then realize it’s not in line AT ALL with what you really want. Thanks for commenting :)!

  3. Britt Anderson

    Great advice….I never fell into the #1 trap, but see it all the time. I can see why it would seem like a good idea temporarily, but in the end, it just is never worth it! But I need to work on #3….thanks for the reminder.


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