Your business’ start-up phase is one of the most exciting times you’ll ever experience, but it can also be one of the most frustrating. There’s nothing like building something from scratch, proving all the naysayers wrong, overcoming all your obstacles, and having something awesome to show at the end of it. There’s also nothing like hitting the wall – which you can feel is happening all too frequently when all you want to do is get ahead and get everything in motion as soon as possible.
Before you start your own business, here are some important questions that you should take some serious time to consider. It’s a life-changing decision and is one that shouldn’t be taken lightly.
Life isn’t fair.
Those with more money in the bank, those who are well-known, and those with influence will always have an easier time gathering the support needed to get a business off the ground. If this doesn’t describe you, you should partner with someone who can get you the help you need. Networking is an awesome way to start building up a web of connections that could help you out now, or in the future!
It won’t be easy to get financing.
There are certain start-ups that are more risky than others, and therefore financial institutions are more reluctant to lend money. There aren’t many grants available for businesses, and even fewer of those are available to start-ups. If you can, participate in a start-up program or inquire into government funding.
Don’t quit your day job yet.
You’re not going to turn a profit immediately, and in some instances you won’t make enough to pay your bills. Don’t jump ship until you’re totally sure that your business will be able to support you. Making ends meet will be a struggle and you might have to give up your luxuries, but if your business takes off, it’ll all be worth it!
Don’t start without a plan in place.
Flying by the seat of your pants is no way to start a business- there are many things that need to be done first, and in very specific orders too! Make up a checklist and follow it meticulously; don’t skip tasks because they’re too time consuming or tedious. If you put in the work now, you’re more likely to be a success later.
You will never possess all the knowledge you need.
Running your own business isn’t just one job- it involves several. There may be people that can do ten things at once and do them all well, but you shouldn’t try. Hire a bookkeeper, an accountant, a receptionist, or whoever you need before things get too busy. Decide how you’re going to deliver your product; if you can’t handle shipping in-house, hire one of the many internet fulfilment services.
Having a good idea isn’t enough.
If it was, Nikola Tesla (who invented the radio) would have died wealthy instead of destitute. To be successful, you not only have to have a good idea, you have to know how to develop and market it.
Do it right from the beginning.
Make sure you’re legally registered, and that you’re complying with all regulations and paying all the necessary taxes. Choose the right structure for your business, and buy sufficient insurance based on that structure. Economizing will only cost you more in the end. For instance, if you run a construction business without workers’ compensation coverage and a worker falls, you’ll be liable for all damages and medical costs.
Starting a business takes a significant investment of mental, physical and financial resources, and it’s disheartening to see people go through the whole process only to fail. We hope that this article has given you some of the help necessary to start a business correctly, and if it has, we’ve accomplished our goal.