As an entrepreneur you will have your plate full with incidents where trusting someone and handling different types of people is just about a daily affair. With everyone offering something 'promising' and word-of-mouth guarantees aplenty, entrepreneurs face the risk of being taken advantage of - even by their own family and friends. That is why, when you're in business, you should only place trust in yourself. However, you can't go on for very long without entrusting important duties to other people. As your business expands and grows, you need to surround yourself with people who have your business' best interests at heart. While this sounds ideal, it is not always the case.
Here's how you can avoid being lied to as an entrepreneur.
All entrepreneurs are surrounded by people who try to make them believe that they are better than their peers. If you're foolish enough to believe such talk, you set yourself up for failure. Similarly, if a vendor tells you that he will supply better quality material to you as opposed to what he supplies to the rest of his clientele, let his product do the talking.
We live in the world of social media where relationships are fleeting at best. However, if you want to be a successful entrepreneur, you need to understand that true power lies in long-term relationships. Focus on building fewer, high-quality relationships instead of gathering a large number of acquaintances. Don't jump into a partnership till you've known someone for at least a year.
Before bringing a vendor on board, talk to your colleagues and peers and ask them if they have dealt with that particular vendor in the past. If they haven't, ask them if they've heard any reviews about him. Do your market research before taking someone at face value. Sometimes, you will hear things about an employee of yours that will shock you. However, take it as a learning experience instead of turning a deaf ear to what people are saying.
No matter how good your relationship is with a particular client or employee, always get important things in writing. Whether it is informally over email or formally through a contract, it doesn't hurt to record an agreement. Be suspicious of anyone who refuses to put anything in writing. They are either unprofessional or they don't have your best interests at heart.
If someone breaks a promise for the first time, take it as a red flag. Don't let your personal feelings interfere with making a professional decision that is best for your business. Hold them accountable for their actions and if you have to stay in business with them, proceed with caution.
You don't have to stay on edge at all times as most people are good and they mean well. Use the above mentioned tips to weed out the liars from the rest of the crowd so your business can grow without hindrance.