4 Mistakes to Avoid in the Stock Market

Trading can be challenging, but most of all it is risky. Successful investors and traders all agree that making mistakes is part of learning. However, you do not have to repeat the mistakes done by others. We can all learn from mistakes.Here are four mistakes that you should avoid in the stock market for a successful career in trading.

Using margin

As a new investor, you should never be lured by what is presented as free money. A margin is money extended to you by your broker as credit. Without experience in trading, buying on margin could land you in unnecessary debt. Stick to buying stock using your capital which places you within the risk profile that your capital allows you. This way, even if your positions do not yield, you get to live to trade another day. When your investments all flop and you bought them using margin, you land into debt in addition to losing your capital.

Chasing stocks

Wise investment entails purchasing a stock at the right share prices and selling when the price hits your desirable point or when the loss cannot be sustainable. Chasing the sock entails trying to fill an order by bidding successively as the rice moves. This is reactionary bidding, and you might lose your focus pursuing an order without being strategic about the risks and leverage that you hold. Avoid this at all costs. Purchase at the right time and pull out at the strategic time. Don’t chase.

Don’t hope

Trading is all about speculation, but don’t be deceived that it is a game of hoping and praying for the stocks to turn in your favor. So don’t hope. Instead, strategize based on philosophical and logical analysis of the market conditions. This is the only way that you will remain objective in selecting your positions and making the calls.Buying stock hoping to sell them at a profit requires more than hope.It requires discipline in sticking to your strategy and conducting performance analysis to determine how each trade performed, the lessons learned and your profit and loss vis-à-vis our portfolio.This can be determined by carrying out a post-trade analysis.

Underestimating yourself

Most investors, especially beginners, have been scared to the point that they think less of themselves when it comes to excelling in the market. Success has somehow been reserved for the sophisticated investors with years of experience. But don’t be deceived. Beginners can also be successful; it does not have to come after years of trading. However, it also depends on how you define success. For a beginner, success should entail mastering a strategy that flips your $100 to $150 after two days. It is all about getting returns on your capital. And as you get used to trading, your capital also increases in line with your risk tolerance. That is the definition of success. So do not underestimate your abilities and potential to be a successful investor.

I’m Not a Sales Person But I Have to Sell – What Do I Do?

After thousands of hours of study and many years honing technical skills to be a competent professional in your chosen field, it can come as a rude shock that you now need to sell your services and capabilities as well. In today’s busy market, a competent selling capability isn’t a nice-to-have it is an essential business and life skill.

Interestingly, the topic of selling and growing a business often doesn’t feature in those university lectures does it? In fact, selling is in many cases covered over and, if spoken about at all, was only mentioned as an unsavoury aspect employed by the desperate. ‘We don’t have to sell because we are…’ are the famous last words of many failed professional or small business owners who focus only on their domain of expertise as the distinguishing factor. Well those days are well and truly over.

This myopic view of the essential life skill of selling has often left people feeling vulnerable, confused and financially worse off. No longer can you rely upon only your technical competence to guarantee your success or wait around for passive referrals.

The bad press that often accompanies the profession of selling doesn’t help either. Often the only ‘selling’ stories we hear or read about in the media are those about shonky operators exploiting anyone they can, especially the vulnerable and weak. For instance, the plethora of insulation businesses and telemarketing firms exposed as fraudulent and incompetent has done nothing for the PR of selling. This type of behaviour is labelled as ‘selling’ by the media which I argue is incorrect. The type of behaviour and intentions exhibited by these operators and other ‘shonk merchants’ is actually fraud and deception, and in some cases bullying and intimidation. That is not selling. This is one reason why many people don’t want to be in sales. Who wants to be associated with ‘shonk’?

There is another issue too, the old Australian legacy of the ‘tall poppy’ syndrome. Heaven forbid that you take proactive control over your destiny by getting out there and promoting your business and your capabilities so others may benefit. Heaven forbid that you actually make a name for yourself. ‘Who do they think they are?’ or ‘They’ve got tickets on themselves’ are some of the catch cries from people who begrudge those who get up and make what they do visible to other the people.

These syncs often confuse proactive, ethical self promotion, prospecting, and selling practices with self- grandiose, boasting or big noting. Sure there are a few people for whom this is true; it’s all about them. While these people can be highly entertaining in some instances, people often tire of them if there is nothing of real value and substance to support them. The truth is one can lead a very successful sales career without becoming a boastful, self-absorbed git. In fact, the research into highly effective sales professionals shows they are often humble, highly self-aware, collaborative, see the big picture and details, effective at what they do, and have a ‘we’ not ‘me’ focus. They are very capable, resourceful, and engender trust on all levels. They are worth knowing. Is this what most of us want for ourselves? Don’t we want people to know that if they work with us they will be better off as a result?

Despite the overexposure of those shonky operators by the media or the cringe factor brought about by the ‘tall poppy’ critics, there are a lot of good untold stories about ethical selling practices out there. They often don’t make the mainstream media or general conversations because they are happening everyday in millions of ways. It’s a bit like IT, we never celebrate or talk about the fact that our IT system hasn’t crashed we only hear and complain about it when something goes wrong.

Yet many people struggling with the concept of selling pay good money to go on selling skills courses to learn how to sell and yet they never put it into practice. So before you pay money for selling skills, examine the state of your mind; the beliefs, feelings, and intentions you hold about selling.

Your beliefs, not your abilities, could be holding you and your career hostage. Before you can dedicate the energy to become skillful and masterful in something as complex as selling, you need to want to sell.

So let’s cut to the chase, for those of you who now need to consciously include the capability of selling in your business mindset and skills here are a few things to consider:

  • Why do you need to sell? Who will benefit from you being able to sell competently?
  • How will ethically and proactively promoting and selling your capabilities help you and your clients?
  • What is your current view of selling? Do you hold onto a view that makes you feel ashamed of selling? How is that view affecting your ability to keep your business healthy and viable?
  • Can you reframe your thinking about selling? See it as a way to make what you do visible to the people who need to know about you so they can benefit from your skills and talent?
  • How do you feel about the statement ‘everybody lives by selling something’?
  • How can selling be incorporated into your business and align with your ethical values and desire to run an honourable business?
  • Do you feel worthy of being able to earn what you are worth?

Sadly limiting beliefs about selling are a significant issue for many people and something that can be overcome with patience, clarity, and persistence. If this is an issue for you please feel free to contact us to discuss this further. We would be happy to help you get started on your sales career.

Remember everybody lives by selling something