Starting a Business – Starting Strong!
Starting a “small” business is a big decision. It can be overly exciting, sometimes it can be difficult and uncertain. As a business owner, it is easy to spend all your time and resources on the BUSINESS: every business owner must be ready to face countless sacrifices and challenges; from huge achievements to big flops, if you are not fueled by willpower at every step of the way, your job is much harder. During tough times, remember why you started the business and let determination be your driving force.
Entrepreneurship is rewarding, it is a marathon; It takes courage and determination to transform an idea into a profitable business enterprise. However, before starting out, it is important to conduct market research, take only calculated and careful steps to achieving success in the business. Additionally, gauge the market demand for your proposed product or service(s) – do not start a business If there is low market demand for your product or service(s).
Every business starts with an idea and turning that idea into commercial success requires planning, research, financing, marketing among other things.
Like Life, your business may not always work out as planned. Notwithstanding, it is important that you have a plan that details your strategy for business sustainability, your business goals; how these goals will be attained. An effective plan serves as a guide to business success.
It is important to understand the industry that your business falls under. The knowledge would help you develop an effective strategy for growth in the Industry. Also, you must have a thorough knowledge of your customers and their behavior. No business venture profits without customers; your success depends on the customer’s relationship with your product or service(s). Equally important, you need to study the demographics of your potential customer base and understand their buying habits.
A law professional can provide guidance on how to structure your business legally. This is important because the legal structure you use to support your business will influence your tax payments, legal liability, and potential for future investment.
Most small businesses are launched with personal finance and capital from friends and families. You can also seek capital from external sources like private lenders, government loans & grants, venture capitalists, angel investors. Importantly, do not start a business with unguaranteed capital.
As a novice entrepreneur, you ought to fully understand the timeline of funding that the business needs to survive the startup phase; the numbers that shows the state of health of the business and align it with your expectations. Develop a strategy that leads to reduced operating cost and increased revenue. The amount of cash available to the business would influence the number of calculated risks you are willing to take for the business.
Many external factors determine the fate of a business. Every business owner is expected to understand, calculate, and manage their business risks. For a new business, the industry risk must be assessed before moving on with the business plan. Starting your business with debt is dangerous especially if you are a first-time entrepreneur. A start-up is inherently very risky; it is advisable to self-fund your business idea and then go for funding when the business starts experiencing growth. This way you can reduce the business risk relating to credit.
Lastly, no educational institution can fully prepare you for starting a business, most of the learning happens on the job. Still, you can equally learn from mentors; business professionals or businesspeople with proven records.