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4 Fast case studies in the Entrepreneurial Growth Trap
Nov 8, 2017  |  Kenelm Tonkin


Once explained, you understand the Entrepreneurial Growth Trap conceptually. Now let’s see what it looks like in practice.

Here are 4 fast case studies in play at this very moment:

Gerald lived frugally for years and had saved $27,750 towards his dream start-up. He even had a cash flow projection which said he needed slightly less. A friend offered capital from his savings too but Gerald wanted to have total control and go it alone. Despite being frugal with every penny of his savings, he’d spent $23,000+ in just 12 weeks. His cash flow assumptions proved grossly unrealistic. Not wanting to lose his investment, control and pride, Gerald continued to grind away for 2 years, barely making a living, before going out of business. Today, he works for a big company and has no savings.


Fiona owns a nail salon. For 7 months, she’s been at a dress-circle location but the rent is emptying her bank account too quickly. Her plan was to hire 3 staff to begin but there’s just no money. She works all week to pay the landlord. It’s just not turning out the way she imagined.


Lincoln is busy. His chiropractic practice is pumping with patients. He starts daily at 8am and goes through to 6pm with a 30 minute lunch. He has an administrative assistant Monday, Wednesday and half day Friday, but she’s seemingly always making mistakes and is constantly running behind. He promises to train her better. On Tuesdays, Thursday and Friday afternoons, he answers the phone during consultations. Last Wednesday, the final patient leaves for the day and Lincoln remembered to spend a little time training his assistant.

She left an hour earlier and there’s a pile of unanswered messages. One is from an upset patient. Another is from his accountant who needs up-to-date bookkeeping records tomorrow morning.

At 7:45pm whilst doing administrative tasks, he noticed an envelope. His assistant resigned without notice, citing inadequate training and more hours elsewhere. His instant reaction is “Well, it’s less hassle without an assistant.”   


Anthony owns a software company. He’s a developer who spends 80% of his time writing code but siphons off some time for marketing amidst everything else.

All his business comes from Google AdWords. He’s an IT guy and figures this couldn’t be so hard. “It’s a software platform after all”, he rationalizes. So he bangs away month after frustrating month with mixed success, with whatever slither of a time he has for marketing.

One day, he notices the company’s bank balance has gradually slipped to critical level. He looks at his poor marketing results and blames Google AdWord’s terrible system. But he has no money to pay an expert now.


These are all variations of the one overarching mistake made by business owners.

The proven technique for escaping the Entrepreneurial Growth Trap is Systemize & Scale.

Dive into Entrepreneurs Life now for more on this and related topics. It’s a treasure-trove of tested growth insights which entrepreneurs can instantly apply and 100% jammed with videos, innovations, infographics, lists, how-to guides, self-assessments, tools, recommendations and ebooks.

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