In the startup world, there is no shortage of entrepreneurs willing to share their experiences and secrets to success. Many of them tend to share similar advice for aspiring founders -- write a business plan, build a great team, research your customer, etc.

While most of these commonly-dispensed tips are wise to follow, not all of them are actually effective. In fact, some will ultimately steer you and your new business in the wrong direction.

That's why we asked a group of entrepreneurs to share some often-repeated startup advice that they disagree with. Below are seven tips they don't think you should follow and why.

Ignore your emotions.

Making business decisions based on logic sounds like sound advice, but it doesn't always work, says Blair Thomas, co-founder of eMerchantBroker. Instead, he recommends combining logic with passion.

"Finding out all there is to know -- facts, research and stats -- about any industry is important, but motivation needs to be a part of it too," Thomas says. "Logic and knowledge are used to make those emotion-based decisions fueled by passion, motivation and zeal."

Get outside funding.

While many startups believe they need to raise tons of investor money to compete with the "big guys," Stephanie Wells, founder of Formidable Forms, thinks it's better to self-fund if possible.

"Bootstrapping your startup will allow your company to start small and grow, as well as be cash-flow positive sooner," Wells adds.

Focus on the product first.

Founders are often told to focus on the product and the right customer base will find their brand. However, Syed Balkhi, co-founder of WPBeginner, believes startups should work backward: First, identify a customer base and pin down a pain point, then create a product that solves their problem.

"When you work backward, customers are far more likely to find value in your product," Balkhi explains.

Automate everything.

According to Nicole Munoz, founder and CEO of Nicole Munoz Consulting, Inc., new businesses that try to automate and scale everything will fail in the long run.

"If you don't cut your chops, and with a good amount of sweat and even old school sales, your business will never flourish," Munoz says. "You have to be willing to make the calls, get your hands dirty and put in the long grinding hours."

Keep your team lean.

Startups on a tight budget often choose to keep their team small at first and try to handle everything themselves. While it seems like a smart idea to rely on yourself to get things done, you will ultimately burn yourself out, says Thomas Griffin, co-founder and president of OptinMonster.

"To succeed, you need to be willing to spend on hiring and pay employees fair and honest wages so they can do the work and quality that's expected of them," Griffin says. "Don't cut corners in this area."

Say 'yes' to every opportunity.

Zach Binder, co-founder and president of Bell + Ivy, acknowledges that opportunities come from everywhere, so he understands why entrepreneurs don't want to miss out on them. However, agreeing to every single opportunity that comes your way isn't a great strategy.

"Understanding when to say no is what makes you a good entrepreneur," explains Binder. "If you say 'yes' to everything, your business will be so scattered and unfocused, no one will know what it is you do."

Stay the course.

New entrepreneurs are often advised to stay the course and not give up if they don't experience success right away. While it does take time for businesses to get off the ground, it's important to know when to change directions.

"A business owner should remain confident and allow time for the business to develop," says Matthew Podolsky, managing attorney at Florida Law Advisers, P.A. "However, if there are problems with profitability or other aspects of the business, you should look for solutions and improvements. Simply staying the course may not be a viable solution."

Published on: Aug 12, 2019
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.