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5 Small Business Killers That Will Destroy Your Progress And How To Tackle Them


By Paula Conway, President of Astonish Media Group

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If you want to build a business and expand your brand and wealth base, you have to show up and make it count. Now is the time to put all of the old baggage behind you and push your skills and raw talent forward. Discerning between the do’s and don’t’s in business can be confusing, so let’s get really clear on what will move the dial and what won’t.

Here are 5 business killers that will destroy your progress and leave your business (and your dreams) in the dust if you don’t destroy these dead-beat ways now:

1. Thinking small.

Have you ever heard the saying “go big or go home”? Well, that saying is a great mantra to have if you really want to succeed in business. Thinking big requires dedicated time set aside for divergent brainstorming to set clear, yet attainable, goals. If you start by removing current barriers to your goals, and then work backwards (i.e. how to eradicate those barriers), you can find a way forward to reaching those larger business goals.

2. Trying to be like someone else.

Everything you did in your career has brought you to where you are today, and you have your own unique experiences and talents that no one else has, so don’t comparison shop. Instead, embrace who you are and all of the wonderful talents and experiences you have and own them. Your unique perspectives are exactly what is needed to move your business goals forward.

3. Lack of focus.

If you spread yourself too thin, you will always be playing catch up and never really doing any one thing well. Make a list of all of the items on your list and then prioritize them.  From here, eliminate the things that are not going to make you money or advance your business goals today. Your short list should be just that: short. And these top few items are what you should be focusing on immediately. A great book that helps with prioritizing is “Listful Thinking: Using Lists to Be More Productive, Successful and Less Stressed“.

4. Fear of success.

Fear of success is as common as – and as crippling as – fear of failure. Fear of success is largely rooted in the feeling that you are not good enough and that there are too many unknowns, such as: What is the price of success?  Will I be alone at the top?  will others resent me? Can I handle it? A great quote by Winston Churchill puts this into perspective “Success is not final, failure is not fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts.”

5. Holding on to dead weight.

Imagine what it would be like if you removed the dead weight in your company. That clear picture should be a nice driver to your next steps. While loyalty might be keeping you from letting go, it is also a contributing factor in your lack of business growth. You need to decide if you want your business to survive or thrive. Remember too, letting go of the dead weight will sharpen your business, it will also open new doors for those let go; growth for you is also new horizons for them. 

Remember that your original dream is what drove you to start your venture, but dreams can be left in the clouds unless you have something drive them. The other half of that equation is you, and you are only as good as every last thing you did to drive yourself and your business forward, which means that each minute of each day counts.   Be a constant practitioner of your success and you are sure to succeed.


Paula Conway

Paula Conway is a well-known starter, media and communications expert, author, guest speaker, publisher, and the President of Astonish Media Group. in New York City. Her agency boats among its roster Fortune 500 companies, media conglomerates, celebrities, and early stage startups. An award-winning author and writer, she has contributed to In Style, the New York Times, Robb Report, Good Housekeeping, New York Post, and New York Daily News among others.