3 Keys to Starting a Small Business
An idea will remain an idea unless you act upon it. But oftentimes, the hardest part of a journey is getting started. The same is true for launching a small business, but with a few simple tips, you will soon be on your way.
The first step is to decide on your vision. Before you dive into research and everything else, define your goals and how you’re going to achieve them. It’s a good idea to write them down or make a voice recording–whichever works best for you. Talk about it with anyone who will listen. This could include family members, friends, neighbors, or other business owners. As you talk it out, you’ll be able to define your mission more succinctly and ensure that others also resonate with your idea. As they offer input, you’ll find out the strong and weak points of your plans, as well as ways to improve your products and/or services.
Another key is spending ample time doing research. Consider all aspects of starting and running a business, including the industry you’re entering, the needs of your “target audience” and how best to fulfill them. Think about both your short-term and long-term vision. Imagine where you want to see your business in five or ten years from now. Be prepared for failure (by setting up backup plans), and don’t forget to be poised for success as well. You might tend to overlook the latter scenario, but suppose your business really takes off–you’ll need to be ready so you don’t come up short on staff, get burned out, or fall behind on production and delivery.
Remember that there’s no need to reinvent the wheel. Other business owners have found tried and true ways to do what you’re doing as far as building, financing and sustaining a company, so look around yourself for sources of wisdom and experience. Who inspires you professionally? Who could be a mentor to you, perhaps even in the years to come? Take initiative to reach out. Meet with them over coffee, come with questions, and find out if you can shadow them. As you learn from what they’ve done, be sure to ask questions concerning all of the major components of running a business, such as interacting with customers, maintaining the administrative side, and keeping up with accounting.
With these important tips in mind, you can take your idea on the road and see your small business start to come to life.