January 18, 2020
BIGGEST Mistakes I Made as a NEW Entrepreneur (I almost got SUED!?)

BIGGEST Mistakes I Made as a NEW Entrepreneur (I almost got SUED!?)

What’s up everyone? Welcome back to my channel. In today’s video, I really want to share with
you some mistakes that I’ve made while building my business. These are mistakes I’m a little bit embarrassed
to share, but I also feel can save you some headaches, some embarrassment, some time,
and some money. So if you really want to learn about my journey
and my mistakes so that you can avoid making the same ones, then keep on watching. By now you probably know my style, so let’s
just dive right into the video. The first mistake that I made is probably
one of the most embarrassing cringeworthy mistakes ever, and that is me stealing someone
else’s terms and conditions. Yep, you heard it right. Even me saying it out loud on my YouTube channel
just makes me feel so small. But it’s true, I stole someone’s terms and
conditions. And when I was starting out building my website,
I didn’t really know much about anything at all other than the fact that you need to have
a terms and conditions, privacy policy, all of that in order to make sure that your website
is legit. So for me at the time, I had no money. I really was super ignorant, and I didn’t
really know what I was doing. And what I heard from a lot of people to do
is to just take someone else’s terms and conditions, so that’s what I did. I took another person’s terms and conditions
and their privacy policy. I copied and pasted it, tweaked it a little
bit, and then I put it on my website. And honestly, I did this without a second
thought, and that just really proves my ignorance. Essentially, I had it there and then a month
later I got an email from that person’s team, and my heart just dropped. It was such a scary moment for me, and I’ll
never forget it because I was like, oh my goodness, my career’s over. This person’s going to sue me. This person is going to, I don’t know, expose
me. I had just started my coaching business and
it was just such a horrible feeling. After that experience of realizing I had indeed
stolen someone’s property and put it on my website, that gave me a sense of urgency to
take everything that I’ve ever made and put it towards my own contracts and creating my
own terms and conditions, privacy policy, earnings disclaimer, all of that, all of these
contracts I’ve mentioned in this video right here. But I had spent $3,000 on making these contracts
and so through that process, what I realized I had done is I had essentially stolen someone
else’s property, and when you are taking someone else’s contracts, copy and pasting it, you’re
essentially taking someone’s money. They had paid thousands and thousands to work
with lawyers to create those for their business. And for you to rip that off is stealing. It’s copyright infringement. Luckily for me, that person’s team just let
me go. Not that they were super nice about it, but
they didn’t say anything after I took it down right away. But having that experience alone was truly
a blessing in disguise because now I’m super careful. I make sure I credit people. I make sure that I’m protecting my own business
and I make sure that I’m also teaching others about being careful about copying other people
because the line between inspiration and copyright infringement is very thin. I almost pretty much got a heart attack overtaking
someone’s terms and conditions. Imagine if it was something that was even
more grave and I think that a lot of new content creators, we have a tendency of taking inspiration
from other people but not realizing that it’s actually straight up copyright infringement. So I really want to share this really big
mistake that I made with you guys so that you guys don’t make the same mistake, don’t
get that same email because you could really lose everything in that one day and I’m really
lucky that no legal action was taken on my end. Speaking of legal issues, the second mistake
that I made in my business was going to a lawyer before going to an accountant. Now, for a lot of us new entrepreneurs who
are starting out, a really big question that we ask ourselves is how do we actually make
our business official? Do we do LLC? Do we do incorporation, sole proprietorship,
business license, whatever country you’re in it’s a different term. But that is a major question that a lot of
us have. Now, a mistake that I made is I did so much
research on the Internet and I came to the conclusion myself to incorporate my business. And then the first person that I went to was
a lawyer and I had paid $1,200 or 1,250 or something like that to get my incorporation
documents done. Now, obviously I felt like a pro and I was
like, yay, I got incorporated with a lawyer. But months later when I actually hired my
accountant, I realized that I should have gone to the accountant first. The reason for this is because an accountant
is the person that’s going to be able to look at your personal taxes, look at all of your
income, look at your goals, and really give you their advice and their counseling on which
type of corporation or which type of business you should do. Should you be a sole proprietorship based
on your personal tax issues, based on your employment history, should you be in incorporation,
should you have an LLC, should you be an escort? Whatever it is, an accountant is the one that’s
going to be able to advise you best. And then what happens is that that accountant
will then connect you with a lawyer and how it’s supposed to happen is that a lawyer and
an accountant should be working together to formulate those documents for you. And the reason why those documents are really
important is because those documents are going to dictate the structure of your business. Now, the mistake that I made is because I
went to a lawyer first when I gave the documents to my accountant and when I told her about
my goals and everything that I wanted to do in my business, she told me that there were
actually some mistakes that were made in my documents. And the consequence of that is I had to pay
a little bit more to actually get some of my documents corrected. That could have easily been avoided if I had
went to an accountant first. So I really want to share this piece of advice
for you because a lot of us, we really underestimate the power of accountants and we straight up
go to the lawyers without really doing our own due diligence and doing our own research
with an accountant, with experts to get the best advice possible on how you want to structure
your company. Now, jumping out of all of the legal topics,
let’s talk about mistake number three. And mistake number three has something to
do with pricing. Now, really big mistake that I made in the
beginning of my coaching business when working with clients is that I would always forget
to charge more for my payment plan. For those of you who aren’t familiar, generally
when you work with a client, they either have the option to number one, pay in full or you
give them the option to split the payment into payment plans so they pay you monthly. Now for me, a bad habit that I would always
do is I would always forget to charge more for my payment plans. So for example, if my entire service costs
$1,500 and a client wanted to actually choose the payment plan, then I would tell them,
okay great, I’ll invoice you $500 for three months. The issue with this is that when you are splitting
up the payments, you’re going to have more transactional fees, there’s going to be more
admin fees to it. So you’re actually losing money if you’re
charging the exact amount and splitting it by the exact time frame without charging a
little bit more. Best practice tells you that you should probably
charge about 10 to 15% more for your payment plans to account for all the additional fees
that you might incur by splitting up those payments in the first place. Not only this, if you don’t increase the price
of your payment plans, it doesn’t really give a client a good incentive to pay you everything
in full at once. For majority of us that are in the service
based industry, we prefer having people pay us in full versus hoping that they’re going
to pay us month by month because it increases your risk. That client might default on their payments. That client might not pay the invoice. So if you actually increase the amount that
you charge for a payment plan, at least you have that extra security every month. That’s a big mistake that I made when I was
first starting out my business. I kept on forgetting to charge more for my
payment plans. So I definitely want to make sure that you
guys knew about that. Speaking of clients, the fourth mistake that
I made early on in my business was taking too many sales calls. Now, obviously to a lot of you, you’re probably
thinking what? Having too many sales calls, that’s a perfect
problem. But what you don’t realize is that not all
sales calls are really worth it. What I mean by this is that earlier on in
my business, I was constantly saying yes to all of these applicants to my one on one coaching
business. And what I would do is I would hop on so many
sales calls to the point where my entire day it was gone and just dedicated hopping on
call to call to call with potential clients. To be honest, when I really reflect back on
this, on why I was hopping on so many sales calls is because of two reasons. The first was, I was running off of a scarcity
mindset. I was worried about, oh my gosh, what if this
is a fluke, what if I’ll never get clients next month? I have to hop on this call. I have to, and that was a really bad mindset
to have. The second thing is that I simply didn’t really
have the guts to say no. I didn’t like to reject people. I wanted to give them a chance just to hop
on that call to see if we were really the right fit. Even though when I was looking at the application,
sometimes they really weren’t a good fit for my business and oftentimes they might’ve even
said that they actually can’t afford my service. And in the beginning, I was still choosing
to hop on calls with these people. As a consequence to this, my entire day would
be wasted just hopping on these calls with people that truly weren’t a good fit to my
program. It really got to the point where sometimes
I would hope that these people would cancel their sales calls with me just so that I didn’t
have to hop on. That’s when I realized that I had a huge issue
on my hands because if I already know I don’t want to work with them, why would I waste
my time on a sales call with them when I could actually use that time to do something else? So a big problem that I had is I spent way
too much time talking to prospects versus spending that time actually growing my business. Not only this, I realized it was really hard
at the time to say no to people who literally told me, hey, I have the money and I want
to work with you. But at the end of the day, what I realized
is that just because someone can pay for your service doesn’t mean that they’re an ideal
client. With that being said, if you are a newer entrepreneur
who works with clients, I completely understand feeling the need to want to hop on every sales
call, but really understand that this is your business at the end of the day and your time
is really valuable. Don’t fall victim to having a scarcity mindset
like I did because the more people that you take in onto the sales calls, the more that
you’re actually blocking space for potential clients that are ideal for your business because
what’s going to happen is that you’re going to be fully booked up with all these sales
calls, with your non ideal clients and therefore your ideal clients who have rockstar applications
are going to have to wait weeks before they can even talk to you and you’re just essentially
wasting your time and you’re wasting the client’s time. So I highly recommend that you increase your
standards in terms of the people that you want to hop on these sales calls with. Because at the end of the day, like I said,
your time becomes even more valuable as you grow in business. Not only this, what I also have to quickly
add is again, just because someone has money does not mean that they are an ideal client. If a client or potential client is lazy, not
an action taker, has a bad attitude, it doesn’t matter if they’re willing to pay me 10,000,
20,000, 50,000. Your experience as a service provider, as
an entrepreneur, as a freelancer or whoever you want to call yourself, is more important
than the money. You don’t want to have clients that are going
to treat you like crap and just don’t fall victim into just thinking that it’s all about
the money because your experience of owning your business is also very sacred and you
need to be very, very picky about who you let into your space. Now, the next mistake that I made in my business
is poor bookkeeping. Now, when I was first starting my business,
I was using DIY bookkeeping/accounting apps like QuickBooks, FreshBooks and Wave. Wave is actually the one I recommend if you
are someone who’s on a budget, wants to do bookkeeping and wants to do invoicing. FYI, I’ll leave the link in the description
box below. But anyways, when I was using these tools,
I realized that I had no time or desire to actually do proper bookkeeping and therefore
I had no visibility in terms of what was coming into my business and what was coming out. Not only this, I also wasn’t categorizing
my expenses properly, so I really was just a financial mess. Not only this, because I had very little visibility
in terms of my monthly expenses. It was really hard for me to actually plan
for my future in my business and also plan for my taxes as well. Because what you need to realize is that when
tax season rolls around for corporate taxes, taxes are applied to your net profit, not
your revenue. In order for you to really think about how
much money you want to set aside for taxes, you should technically have a good idea of
what your expenses are so that you can understand your profit. For me, because I had such poor bookkeeping
habits and I really was so lazy on keeping it organized, I really had no idea about what
my profit could look like for the year and therefore it was really hard for me to understand
how much money I really need to put aside for taxes so that I don’t end up going bankrupt
when tax season comes. That’s why for me, knowing the fact that I’m
not on top of my bookkeeping and I personally have no desire to do it, I actually outsourced
it to a company called Bench Accounting. Now, I am not paid by Bench to mention them,
I actually pay for the service myself. But essentially what bench accounting is is
that it is real bookkeepers that are actually helping me do my bookkeeping. I get added to this piece of software and
I’m able to track all of my expenses. All I have to do is actually hop on a call
with them once a month and they advise me and they give me a really good picture of
what my finances are like. Now, if you want to use Bench Accounting or
you want to try it out, definitely check out the link in the description box below to get
20% off your first six months. And again, this is not sponsored by Bench,
I actually asked them to be an affiliate just because I love their service so much and I
think that it is awesome and it is very handsfree, especially if you want to go next level in
your business. Not only this, Bench Accounting also works
with your accountants to make sure that everything is all right and it’s just been such a pleasure
having them and I’m so, so grateful for them honestly. Now, regardless if you decide to use something
like Bench Accounting or you want to do it the DIY route and do it yourself, at the end
of the day, good bookkeeping is essential. You really need to understand your expenses. The moment that I actually shaped up my bookkeeping,
I was able to see how much money I was actually spending in certain areas of my business,
which actually allowed me to cut down on some of my expenses, change softwares, and actually
save some money. For example, after cleaning up my books, I
realized that every month I was paying over $500 for my email marketing software where
I could have easily switched to another email marketing platform and pay a lot less, pretty
much half the price for the same amount of subscribers. And that was just through better bookkeeping. So I highly, highly recommend that you do
not make the same mistake I did and actually start early when it comes to having better
bookkeeping habits. Now, so far in this video we talked a lot
about business mistakes. Now, make sure you hit the notification bell
because in the next video I’m going to tell you all about the skills that you need to
have in order to be a successful entrepreneur in business. So make sure you hit the notification bell
so you do not miss it. In the meantime, while you wait for that video,
if you want to learn more about social media, business, and life in general, make sure that
you also check out these two videos right here. As always, guys, I hope you guys have a great
day, a great week, and a great life, and I’ll see you in the next one. Bye guys.

100 thoughts on “BIGGEST Mistakes I Made as a NEW Entrepreneur (I almost got SUED!?)

  1. How do you like the business/entrepreneur content? I'd love to answer any other questions you might have ๐ŸŽ‰

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  2. Vanessa, I would like to ask how long does it take to get accepted into the Fearless Boss group by average?

  3. SUper awesome video, you have come long long ways in this time I enjoy a ton watching your videos, I remember your video crying about this being so hard to get done and you have done it was so good to me to realize that someone is telling the truth due to so many people just showing the good stuff and making it look so easy to do, however you came out showing all the struggle detail by detail I value so much people like you, you are a fighter and I'm honestly so happy that you are having all this success cause I could relate to those videos you made and feel so frustrated sometimes, really you are an inspiration to me and I just wanted to let you know that, because it is important to let people know of all the good they do maybe without even realizing it… keep all this good stuff coming, you deserve all you got and much more! I just wanted to say thank you! that's all!! Thank YOU! Hi! Cheers! Saludos! from Utah!

  4. Hi my friend glad to see you today ๐Ÿ˜Š love your videos all the time I'm so excited for every video every week โคโค

  5. Vanessa you are AWESOME! I am no where near that level of business yet, but I'll get there one day. It's AWESOME how you always give straight, no BS, talk and even share your own personal experiences (terms/condition incident). This topic is really good to know. Especially about the Accountant / Lawyer / Documents. Thank you for your great work and great channel!!! ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘

  6. thank you for the tips! Loved them! I have been thinking of possibly incorporating as well so it was very helpful!

  7. loved the video and the topic! a quickie from my side about the sales calls: what is the right way to say no to a client? how do u handle situations like these? it is such a sensitive topic and I was wondering how you go about it ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. The first and saying no to certain people, I'd've figured, but the other details, wow! Thanks, Vanessa, very informative! Thanks for your transparency.

  9. Love hearing your tips and that you are brave enough to share missteps – it definitely helps the community!

  10. There's people perusing other people's terms and conditions to see if they've violated their copyrights?

    Has a very patent troll feel to it.

  11. There is some really great and concise information here for businesses starting out – I didn't realise a lot of these things were required! Really great vid, thank you for sharing!!

  12. How do you find the right balance of how much free info to give out without giving too much that they donโ€™t need one on one coaching?

  13. Great video Vanessa. Definitely gave me some things to think about and I see some room for improvements within my business.

  14. Hey Vanessa! could you dedicate some videos to show the back-end systems of your business? Sales processes, follow-ups, closed deals etc. Thank you!!

  15. I love that you mess up and still have such a good attitude! Hey you learn as you go! Thanks for this!

  16. I love her and her channel, she inspired me to create my channel…. I am new here and I need some support from you, if have anyone to help me to grow up, I will support back to you….

  17. WOW! Vanessa is such a huge inspiration! I have been watching her videos for the past few months and she has inspired me to make my own vlogs! I would love if you went over to my channel, subscribed and checked them out! ๐Ÿ™‹โ€โ™€๏ธ๐ŸŒŸ

  18. https://youtu.be/CL_bOTTCTVs at 10:30 says that we shouldn't have Instagram on a business account? Which is better for us? On or off the business account?

  19. Oh you always say yes and never say no lol ๐Ÿ™‚ You need to hire some sales mate. Actually people normally won't sue you unless they had large advantage when they sue you otherwise they are only want to scare you.


  21. A susprising number of copyright issues involve advertizers wanting to publish their content on your site. Taking the problematic material down isn't what they want. They are parasites. There are a number of entities that buy creative commons material creators downloaded legally and filing copyright infringement complaints to try to get creators to permit a cost free advertising platform for their material.

  22. Thank you soo much for this video & for being.brave and sharing.
    You have actually confirmed what I have been doing thus far and I donโ€™t feel bad for acting on the side of caution. If I could give this 10๐ŸŒŸ I would !!

  23. Vanessa really good point on not taking bad clients just for the money. Some a-hole clients aren't worth it. On another point, you can also have commission-only salespeople (who you trust) take those sales calls for you. And yes, I would love to see more sales videos from you ๐Ÿ™‚

  24. Love you so much!! My IG may have just gained some traction thanks to your beautiful tips and YouTube videos!!

  25. thanks for sharing! i know some of these will definitely save me time and money in future (especially seeing an accountant and sorting out bookkeeping). i'd honestly never even thought of some of the things you mentioned

  26. Such good advice. This is an excellent video. My accountant also gave the best information and I did the same as you. Became a LLC and my accountant said mmmmmmmmmmm you didn't need to do that yes.

  27. Thank you for sharing this! You have a great channel! Iโ€™m your new subscriber ๐Ÿ˜Š looking forward to more videos

  28. Hi Vanessa, I'm editing videos and listening to your video at the same time at Blenz hahaha Like your videos well done.

  29. Just when I had a bad experience with a customer who paid me last year for 2 sessions and now, nearly a year later, he wants to continue, whereas I told him the time has passed and payments are no longer valid.
    Oh dear, but I never had a contract!
    Big LESSON learned! Put everything in writing, even for the silliest small amount!

  30. This is so helpful! It all depends on the country you live in. For instance, in Argentina it isn't always legal to increase the price for a payment plan.

  31. Thanks Vanessa. Another great video. Thanks for being vulnerable and sharing this invaluable and insightful information! Love the work you do.

  32. Where there's money, there's a lawyer ready to grab it. It's a good thing you were broke. Great video!

    In thinking about this, my comment above, while true, doesn't add anything to this conversation. I guess I learned something today. And this young lady is very intelligent, giving valuable information. I'm glad I subscribed earlier this month.

  33. The thing is that so many websites use templates for terms/conditions, earnings disclaimers and so forth.

  34. Wow, I wouldnโ€™t have known that the terms and conditions, etc. are copyrighted as well! Thanks for all the useful information! I plan to have my own business one day so this is good stuff to know. โ˜บ๏ธ

  35. Thanks for you honesty. This was so helpful. I truly appreciate you. Iโ€™m a Boss too btw ๐Ÿ˜‰. Congrats on your success ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿฝ๐Ÿ˜Š

  36. I would love to lean herb more of this kind of stuff and how to create an online course ( video course ).

  37. O M GOOOOOOSSSHHHH!!!! THATS WHAT I DID!! literally copied and pasted an overseas competitor's returns policy!!!!! thank you for this

  38. Vanessa – Thanks for sharing your insight. I have a few questions about the video:
    1. Do you have a method for weeding out those people or businesses that aren't a good fit for your business?
    2. How do you decide it someone would make a good potential client before taking the sales call?
    3. How did the other company learn you used their "Terms and Conditions" on your website?

  39. Thanks for all the advice, Vanessa! And to anyone watching this don't forget to SMASH the like button.

  40. Absolutely love this business content! Thank you for being so transparent and giving REAL money-saving business tips!! โšก๏ธ

  41. Love this video so real and one thing I also love that you started doing was giving us a little sneak peek of what the next video is going to be I know for me it makes waiting for it so much better because i already what itโ€™s going to be on !

  42. Hey Vanessa for your followers. Here is a company that helps people develop a custom made privacy policy if you on a mega small budget. You will need to read and update or have an attorney friend read through it.

  43. Hi! What program or website do you use to make those icons and words moves in your videos? Thx Vanessa!

  44. Really really informative video. Even I was thinking that tweaking terms and conditions is alright. Thank God I watched it before. You saved so many of us. Trust me u don't need to feel embarrassed…. Anymore

  45. Good Video for sure i was reluctant to click on other videos as a lot of females use themselves for click bait but this was definitely worth my time thank you.

  46. It's so refreshing to watch an entire video full of info and not full of improvisation or unnecessary introductions. Thanks!

  47. Iโ€™ve started multiple businesses and never had to go to a lawyer. Legalzoom.com has been amazing. Inexpensive and gets the job done easily. I do however have an accountant for sure!

  48. THANK YOU !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! โญ๏ธโญ๏ธโญ๏ธโญ๏ธโญ๏ธ

  49. 5:14 payment plan, if you let a customer pay with separate plans(payment plan), then up the price by %10-%15 to make up for extra transactions cost and to give them a reason to just pay in full

  50. Thank you for this video and the great advice. What stood out to me is when you talked about copy writing. Some of my content comes from different websites. Normally I do add it to my description, but I am not certain if I added it to all of my videos. So, after watching this video, I am going to go back and check all videos. I am glad you shared your experience. ๐Ÿ™

  51. I've just discovered your channel and I have been binge watching all of your videos since. I was always hoping that I would find a youtuber like yourself!! Really appreciate all the information you are sharing with us xx

  52. Thanks for this info,but feeling bad for saying the truth,my dear that's what makes me to like you and keep watching your videos,you inspired me.Thanks

  53. Iโ€™m an accountant and tax professional and Iโ€™m looking to partner with a business attorney or lawyer

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