My first thought while reading this book: "Uh-oh, I've done that.\u00a0 And that.\u00a0 And that.\u00a0 Oh - and I still do that.\u00a0 Oops!" It's hard not to take personally the lessons learned in "37 What Were They Thinking Moments in Marketing," by marketer Olalah Njenga. Njenga sent me this book, offering 37 anecdotes of marketing mishaps that she experienced - and includes a disclaimer right up front that names, places and professions have been changed, and that the book isn't intended to harm anyone's reputation. Phew! Did You Have a "What Were They Thinking Moment" Today? Wondering if you've done anything worthy of being featured in the book?\u00a0 Here are some mistakes folks made, and a few of Njenga's thoughts: Wearing gym clothes to a business event - this is not the definition of business casual Crossing out all the information on a business card, and replacing it with all new information (the business owner had a few months to get new cards, and with the quick printing options available, this was very unprofessional) Trying to "pick someone's brain" for free,\u00a0 several times - it's time to set up a paid consultation Bullying people in a waiting room for testimonials needed for a Website -self-explanatory Moving from new Twitter connection to pushy salesperson - be aware that social networking consists of creating relationships first, sales opportunities later Some Skin in the Game One of the chapters is titled "Skin in the Game," and it's an anecdote about how something went wrong because people weren't fully committed, and didn't have a vested interest in the outcome of an event. In the spirit of fair play, I asked Njenga to put some "skin in the game," and offer up to Small Business Trends readers her own "What Was She Thinking Moment."\u00a0 After all, even the best of us have these moments, right? Njenga laughed, and readily complied. Scene #37 \u00bd Olalah's Deeply Personal "What Were You Thinking Moment": So You Call Yourself A Business Owner? Like most business owners in the early stages of business, I was cash-strapped.\u00a0 I had just finished a project for a client and was happy to hear that my payment would be ready immediately.\u00a0 I arrived at the client's office and she handed me a sealed white envelope with my name on it.\u00a0 I happily shoved it in my purse and drove home to get a deposit ticket for my bank account. I completed the deposit ticket and opened the sealed envelope.\u00a0 The check was made payable to my company and not me personally.\u00a0 In fact, it's not fair to say made payable to my company because in fact I only had a registered DBA (doing business as).\u00a0 It wasn't an actual business.\u00a0 I was a sole proprietor. I called the client and explained that the check was made payable to my DBA and that I needed the check to be payable to me personally.\u00a0 She said to come by her office in three days to pick up a replacement check. Three days passed and as directed, I showed up at the client's office.\u00a0 She met me in the parking lot and smiled upon my arrival.\u00a0 When I got out of the car she approached me quickly, smiled again, and handed me a sealed white envelope.\u00a0 As I took it from her hand she said, "Olalah, if you're going to be in business, then be a business." What Was I Thinking? My bruised ego would hear those words echoing in my head for days after I finally cashed the client's check.\u00a0 Though I had been running my one-person company for nearly two years, the truth was, doing business under my name and social security number instead of doing business as a registered business in my state made a difference.\u00a0 It made a difference in how checks were made payable.\u00a0 It made a difference in how clients treated me.\u00a0 Little did I realize, it was also making a difference in how I looked at myself.\u00a0 The sobering words of "Olalah, if you're going to be in business, then be a business," catapulted me to the Secretary of State website where I learned what I needed in order to be considered a real business entity. Taking money doesn't make you a business.\u00a0 The truth is, you're not really a business unless other business professionals see you and treat you like a business.\u00a0 It doesn't matter if you are a business of one or 10 -- if you are going to be in business, then be a business. This was, in fact, the most powerful "What Was I Thinking" moment I've ever had. What This Book is Really About As someone who has been in the public relations business for years, I know that many things can make\u00a0 a reputation, and just one slip-up can ruin a reputation. Is it fair?\u00a0 No.\u00a0 Is it true? Unfortunately, yes. After reading this book, I realized that it's impossible to have a business and not make mistakes.\u00a0 The key take-away here is:\u00a0 look at everything from your client's point of view, and be aware of your actions at all times. And, of course, if you do realize that you made a mistake, apologize and make amends as quickly as possible.