I am contacted all the time by people who want to start a business and need my services, but who don’t realize that they actually aren’t ready. So then what does it take to BE ready to start a business?
The majority of clients who contact me about starting a business only have an idea in their heads. They don’t have a business plan, they haven’t saved up the cash they need for capital expenditures, and they haven’t thought through the costs of actually running and marketing the business. All of these entities are requirements for setting yourself up for success; skipping any or all of them can cause you to stumble later on down the line.
It’s important to note that creating a solid brand takes time and varying amounts of cash. Have you calculated how much money you need to create a website, create your image and brand identity, and create your marketing materials? Have you saved up the money to cover those costs? And if not, are you trying to get started on the cheap by hiring the most inexpensive (and often least professional) help possible, thereby setting yourself up for failure before you even begin?
Lately my advice to new clients has been this: take some time, research your market and competition, write down your expenses, and save some capital to fund your endeavor. When you have done that, I can do my job and help you grow. And you will be ready for success.
So, think you are ready to start a business? Use this list as a reference:
Have you written a business plan?
Have you researched your market and competition?
Do you really know what you need to get started?
Do you have enough money saved to cover your capital expenditures?
Are you capable of funding marketing activities for your business once it’s off the ground, and do you know what those will be?
Have you set goals and targets for your business so that you can gauge whether or not you are being successful?
Starting a business is not an easy endeavor, nor is it a fast one. Because everything in our society is so fast, people want to get their businesses going quickly without having to put in the time and effort.
But remember: you have to do the work first in order to be successful later. Take the time to plan, save, and research so you set yourself up for success. Consult with a professional so that you know what you are doing. That way you have a better chance of achieving the ideas and dreams you are so passionate about.