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Common Mistakes Made When Starting a Business

It is estimated that something like 20% of new businesses fail within a year of starting up, and 50% within the first three years. These are grim numbers, especially for anyone who is considering starting up their own business. Fortunately, there is an upside, looking at those figures in a slightly different way, 80% of all new business survive their first year and 50% make it to at least three years.
What anyone looking to start their own company needs to do is to analyse what the businesses that succeeded did, that the ones that failed didn’t. There are in fact a number of common mistakes that failed businesses have made and knowing what they are will give newcomers the necessary knowledge to help them avoid falling into the same trap.
Business failures are often blamed on insufficient start up capital or not hiring the right people. The truth however, is that the failure of many new businesses comes down to something far closer to home, a failure to thoroughly research the potential viability of the business in the first place. Believing you have a great idea and throwing money into getting it up and running, without first having undertaken proper market research is the number one killer for the majority of new businesses. Fortunately there are ways to avoid this by carrying out relatively simple surveys yourself, without breaking the bank on expensive market research organisations before you have even begun.
Test out the viability of your business by asking the opinion and advice of your own network of contacts. Take a look at government data on such things; it is almost always available completely free of charge. Take a look at businesses operating in areas similar to yours and see if they are succeeding or failing. If they are profitable take a look at why, and find out whom they are selling their products or services to. One of the most common mistakes made by new businesses is that of over estimating the market impact that they will have. Setting up in a larger than necessary office or shop; hiring too many people and purchasing unnecessary and expensive equipment based on cash flow projections that have more to do with hope than reality, are the quickest ways imaginable to send a new business to the wall.
The importance of accurate market research and enforcing a strict cost control regime cannot be overstated. Never be afraid to seek professional, expert advice on financial issues, preferably from an experienced business accountant or financial adviser. Make sure you have enough money to get your business idea up and running and have contingency plans in place should it fail to take off in a short period of time. Also be aware that situations can arise that are entirely beyond your control, such as interest rate rises, for example. Having healthy cash reserves to get you through an unforeseen crisis is an absolute requirement in this day and age.
A professional business plan is an essential tool for starting up a new business successfully and it is highly advisable to draw one up, or have one drawn up for you, before you embark on your new business venture.
If you can avoid these common mistakes, your business will have a much greater chance of becoming the profitable success you obviously expect it to be.It appears that your web host has disabled all functions for handling remote pages and as a result the BackLinks software will not function on your web page. Please contact your web host for more information.…

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Business News

New Age Entrepreneur – Overcome These 6 Obstacles

Entrepreneurship has been growing in popularity the world over. The benefits in my opinion far outweigh the cons so I’ve written this article to overview my personal opinions in hopes of helping others. Procrastination is probably the number one defeating tendency that cripples many would be entrepreneurs before their journey ever even begins.
I’ve created my own top Six List to help others overcome what can hinder success as a budding entrepreneur.
Entrepreneurship Obstacle One: It’s Easy.
Its human nature to make assumptions and it’s no different when an individual judges an entrepreneur on a superficial level. They dont necessarily recognize the hard work and perseverance that a person may have gone through on their journey to success. When we recognize a successful business lets use a restaurant for a hypothetical we immediately tend to think of the obvious. We may simplify it believing if we had a good chef, great food along with a busy location presto instant success.
This is looking at the potential opportunity at its most basic level as an entrepreneur you must learn to dig deeper into the mechanics of the operation to determine what actually makes it tick. A great example in staying with the same hypothetical would be to consider the HR skills to acquire great people, followed by the training requirements needed than onto marketing and learning how to get people through the front door in the first place.
Negotiating a lease on the commercial space required in addition to the kitchen equipment. Setting up payroll, employee benefits and more are just some of the mechanics that make the business you’re seeing successful. By understanding what it takes and what’s happening behind the scenes is what sets entrepreneurs apart.
Obstacle Two: Entrepreneurship is Hard.
The term contradictive may be running through you mind just about now but let me explain and define what it is I’m conveying here. Entrepreneurism is like architecture and it does require a valiant effort and the right building blocks to really achieve great success. Writing and following a properly structured business plan will be worth its weight in gold. Remember failing to plan is planning to fail so a business plan should never be overlooked or ignored.
Achieving success comes down to executing a well thought out plan. Taking predetermined steps that will guide you through the tough times and allow you to thoroughly enjoy good times. Many will immediately dive into the exciting aspects of starting a business then become intimidated with all that’s required on the backend.
The reality is that it’s only as difficult as you choose to make it. There have been countless successful entrepreneurs and if you have a willingness to learn and follow the proper steps you can easily find yourself among there ranks.
Obstacle Three: Most New Businesses Fail
Most of the stats will indicate that an enormous amount of new business start ups will ultimately fail within the first 5 years. True Entrepreneurs do not focus on such negativity if they did how many new businesses would even bother making the attempt. If you’re among those fortunate enough to have children would you ever tell them not to bother trying because they will only fail. Of course not so dont let yourself be shackled by the same short sighted limiting beliefs.
Your success and your failures will all be a learning experience building on your confidence to ultimately succeed. You success will not be predetermined by some run of the mill statistic that’s been a common household quote regarding new businesses for decades.
Always remember that the number of people succeeding will always be less that the volume of people failing. Negativity travels 4 times faster than that of positivity so bad news seemingly is always recalled first and in turn becomes an obstacle you must mentally overcome to succeed.
Your only focus should be on positioning yourself within the 1% of entrepreneurs who achieve success and forget about the other 99% in other words only focus on your most desired outcome.
Obstacle Four: The Risk is High.
The word risk has many different meanings and will be interpreted very differently from person to person. For example starting your own business is not going to kill you but how many of you even think twice about jumping in your car when driving is actually far more risky if we were to sit down and label it. We as entrepreneurs can not eliminate risk it comes with the territory but we do our best to minimize it through proper research and development and following a business plan with the greatest chances of achieving the success we desire.
Risk if often times mistaken as fear of the unknown. When you understand how to accomplish something you dont see much risk in …

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Business News

Advice for Starting a New Business

Starting a new business can be very scary. For a new business owner, it can be very difficult to know where to start. If you are looking for advice, then you have come to the right place. This article will help you get started and give you tips for where to go next.
The first step to any successful business is a business plan. You need to make sure that you have one of these laid out. Throughout the life of your business, your plan will adapt and develop as your business grows.
Your plan will contain many important points. Firstly, you will need to look at your budget. Do a cost count and do a projection of the setup costs for the first 12 months of operation. When doing this, look at the costs month to month. If you can, factor in both the worst case scenario and the best case scenario.
Next, define your business strategy. Define your target market. Who are going to be your clients/customers, and why have you chosen this group. Do a SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats). By considering the current state of your market you can look at what sets you apart from the others and where you stand.
When starting a new business, you need to access what makes you unique. You are competing with already established business. You need to give potential customers a reason to come to you instead! This leads on to the next item you need to consider; an exit strategy. If you cannot draw the customers, you will need to have a plan to get out. Is it therefore wise to get others involved? Can you be prepared to sell your business? These questions are tough but you need to have answers for them.
On top of a business plan, you should also consider getting a mentor. A great mentor is an important asset to your business. They can give you a different perspective on your business decisions, and provide wise advice. As long as you are prepared to listen to tough advice, a mentor will be of great help to you.
The next question for you to ask is who should be your mentor. Don’t only look to advisors within your business field. You are first and foremost an entrepreneur. Look to a successful entrepreneur who has a proven record in business.
Lastly, be sure you register as a business. To register in Australia, choose a business name with the ABR (Australian Business Register), the ASIC (Australian Securities and Investment Commission) and your state’s Department of Fair Trade. Make sure your business name is available. Otherwise, your business will not be counted!
Starting a new business can seem overwhelming. Don’t worry; its not that hard! The important thing is to keep a cool head and not get overwhelmed. With these tips you should be setup and running in no time.…

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Business News Articles

Unemployed? Put Yourself to Work!

The latest figures show the unemployment rate in the US is topping 10%’s one in ten people out of work! And, the future isn’t looking particularly bright. Recent reports estimate the lack of work will continue through 2011, at least. You can’t sit around and wait for big business or the government to turn the economy around, so it’s pretty much up to you to take control for yourself. How can you get your financial life back on track? Put yourself to work!
Starting a business of your own is the best and only way to take complete control of your work life. Working for yourself means no layoffs, no wage freezes, no begging for a day off, no hoping that the big bossman will grant you a meager year-end bonus. When you work for yourself, YOU set your income goals and work as hard (or not) as needed to reach those goals. YOU develop a company culture that fits your personality. YOU establish your own work hours. And YOU decide when it’s time to grow.
Of course, starting a business requires a good bit of time and effort, but at least the work you do is just for you. When you want to earn more income, you put in more work. When you want a little time off, you take the time you need. Because it’s all on you, you will do the work to control the risks and because you are taking control of your worklife, you are more likely to stay motivated.
For many new entrepreneurs, the toughest part of independence is taking the first even figuring out what that first step would be. If you’re just not sure where to start, start here:
Define Your Goals
Take a look at where you are now and where you want to be. Write it all down and cover all areas of your life.
Make the Tough Decisions
If you are drowning in debt, decide how to handle it. If you hate your job, set a deadline to make the change. If you don’t have any startup cash, figure out how to raise it. Look at the gap between where you are and where you want to be and create a concrete plan to close up that gap. If it seems like it will take forever, don’t let that bother you. If you start today, you are one day closer to where you want to be!
Pick a Startup
Brainstorm business ideas, find a modified version of your own big idea, talk to your friends and family about startup opportunities. It really doesn’t matter where you start with your independence, just that you get started. Most wildly successful entrepreneur change direction a number of times before landing on the perfect opportunity. And, more opportunities seem to appear once you’ve taken the first step.
Educate Yourself
Entrepreneurship is its own separate profession. Becoming an expert requires that you learn the fundamentals of a bunch of other professions, including accounting, marketing, financial management, sales, logistics, even secretarial and janitorial duties. Beyond that, you will learn to incorporate all those basic skills and add the key ingredient to success – innovation. Innovation is finding a new, better way to get things done. It might be a change in the product, the sales process, or even in administrative functions, but innovations are the one factor that will make you a success. To be able to identify those innovations, you have to know the basics.
Watch for opportunity
Once you have taken the first leap into entrepreneurship (which might even just be making the decision to go out on your own!), you will begin to see opportunities all around you. Don’t be afraid to pursue multiple opportunities. As long as you manage your time well, having a bunch of hooks in the water will multiply your odds of catching some fish!…

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Business Owner

Kill the Starving Artist!

“I’m going to do it. I’m going to start my own business.”

Chances are you said that or something like it at some point in your career. And here you are, a solopreneur with your own company, reaping the rewards of having control of your own career. Ain’t it great? Or maybe not so great? Perhaps things aren’t quite how you had pictured them. Or it’s taking longer than you thought to get traction. Or there are loads of tasks and decisions that you have to attend to that you hadn’t anticipated.

It is pretty common for a different reality to hit us once we take the leap into solopreneurship. Often it’s a deep passion that motivates the transition, and with our heart leading sometimes the head needs time to catch up. Too bad this isn’t all there is to it.

In all the years that I have been a solopreneur and I have coached solopreneurs, there is one obstacle that keeps cropping up. No matter who, no matter what, no matter where-this obstacle is the single biggest hindrance to the forward progress of the solo business owners around the world.

In short, the biggest obstacle to your success . Not you, the person who believes passionately in your business and who is willing to do whatever it takes to be successful. Not you, the one who knows you can do it. I’m talking about the part of you whose beliefs will keep you spinning your wheels or taking two steps back for every three steps forward.

This is the part of us that I call the Starving Artist.

The Starving Artist whispers things like this in your inner ear:

You have to earn your success, and it takes time to do that.

It’s going to be hard, but stick to it and you’ll get there eventually.

There’s no gain without pain.

Suffering is what brings out your creativity.

Let go of your suffering and you’ll lose that creative spark.

Money corrupts, and wanting to make a lot of it is not a noble goal.

Any of that sound familiar? Essentially, the Starving Artist embodies all the limiting beliefs you have about your own knowledge and abilities. They may have come from parents or teachers, from siblings or peers, or from decisions you made about yourself and about how the world works. Wherever they come from, these beliefs will sabotage you and the growth of your business.

What does your Starving Artist say to you? If you have a hard time answering that, try this: What repeating patterns in your business have held you back? Here are a few examples that indicate the influence of the Starving Artist in your business:

Your only clients are people who can’t pay your standard fees or who pay really slowly after a lot of follow up.

You seem to have a portfolio comprised only of “difficult” or high-maintenance clients.

Every time you have a big, exciting success, it is followed shortly by something that limits or negates it.

You go through frustrating up and down cycles that end up keeping your business in the same place or, worse, slowly eroding.

What can you do about your Starving Artist? Well, it may sound extreme, but you’ve got to KILL the Starving Artist to be successful. Unless the Starving Artist is killed, or at least silenced, there is no action or strategy that will have a lasting positive impact. That inner saboteur must be eliminated before breakthroughs can happen. This is why whacking the Starving Artist is the very first thing we tackle in my coaching program.

If you have not bound and gagged or, better yet, killed, your Starving Artist, I strongly urge you to get to it. You will be amazed at how much faster and more effortless your business growth becomes once that pest is stifled!…

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Business News Articles

Starting a Business From Home – 9 Tips on Starting Your Business

Starting a business from home can be both scary and exciting at the same time. In today’s economy many people are going into business for themselves and want to be the boss and earn the money that they deserve. This Article focuses on 9 important tips that can help you have success with your new venture.
Tip #1 – Check with you local business agencies or the sba to see if you need any license or permits to run a venture from your house. Some states do require these licenses and without them you can face fines and have your business shut down.
Tip #2 – Build you venture around the skills that you have, if you are a great graphic designer, then make sure to offer that as a service. Trying to learn a new craft and making a living off it is very difficult and it is not recommended at all. Your goal is to start making a living right away from your new venture, use your skills that made you some money in your former job.
This may sound funny but some folks try to build a new business around new skills that they have not polished yet and it ends up costing them their business, clients will leave you quickly and the complaints can build up quickly too.
Tip #3 – Make sure to have a website with a catchy domain name, if you are a graphic designer then make sure to include those keywords in your domain name. This will tell your clients what your business is all about, this builds branding right away.
Tip #4 – Build or have someone design you a professional website or blog. Image is everything and a sloppy looking site or blog will simply tell your clients that your business is sloppy too. If your site looks like a site from the 90s, then forget about having clients take you and your venture serious.
Tip #5 – Check on your competition and see what they are doing and how they are running their business. You will want to do this for sure, see how their site looks. Look at their products and services, see how much they are charging and what their unique selling propositions are.
Smart business owners do this all the time, they get tons of information from their competition and use it to their advantage and build a stronger more profitable business.
Tip #6 – Make it easy for your clients to order from you, do not make it an obstacle. If you plan on selling online then simply add a PayPal button to your website and make sure that your shopping cart works without any problems.
Tip #7 – Make sure that your site is not too heavy on the graphics and flash banners, slow loading sites will drive visitors away and this can reduce your sales drastically.
Tip #8 – Offer great customer support and make sure clients can contact you if they have any problems or issues. Having great customer support was how Dell became such a success.
Tip #9 – Delegate your weakness to someone who is stronger. If you strength is at graphic design, then make sure someone else does your marketing for you. If you are bad at accounting, then hire a cpa. This is very important, you can’t do everything by yourself and need help at times to make your business run smoothly.…

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Business Plan

Want To Start Your Own Home-Based Business? 3 Great Ideas For Success

If you have been thinking about starting your own home-based business, there is no better time to start than today! It has never been easier to start your own business from home than it is today with the ease of the internet and the fact that it is widely used across the world. While it may seem like it will be easy, you should realize that it is in fact a real business, so be sure to attack it with plenty of motivation, desire, and determination. There are a few really great ways to make your income, some of which can be very lucrative if you know what you are doing and are ready to work hard.
Here are three ways you can build a legitimate home-based business in a relatively short period of time, they include:
1 – Selling affiliate products
While this can mean many things, basically being an “affiliate” means you are selling someone else’s product and receiving a commission every time you make a sale. This is the fastest way to start selling something, however it is not the most lucrative, since you do not get to keep all of the profits from the sale. If you are not interested in creating your own products or offering a service, this might work well for you.
2 – Your own information products
If you have some knowledge or expertise in a certain area, you can create ebooks, audio courses, and video courses, and then sell them on a website. While this may take some time to put together the products, the reward is well worth the time since you only create the product once and then make money from it for years and years to come. If you do have some expertise in any certain area, this type of business can be very lucrative and is worth consideration.
3 – Consulting
Do you have a lot of experience in something that others will pay your for? If you do, you can start a consulting service and help people 1-on-1 via telephone, email, or even face-to-face. While this type of business may take more of your time since you must be there to consult, it can be very lucrative since people are willing to pay big money for others to help them with the topic at hand. If you are an expert in any field, you should strongly consider this type of business. You can even do a combination of #2 and #3, creating products to help others as well as offering your 1-on-1 consulting as a high-ticket item.
Whichever form of business you choose, be sure to explore the pro’s and con’s of each, choosing whichever fits your personality best.…