Starting New Business
“We all have tremendous potential, and we all are blessed with gifts. Yet, the one thing that holds all of us back is some degree of self-doubt. It is not so much the lack of technical information that holds us back, but more the lack of self-confidence”, rightly quoted by Robert T. Kiyosaki, Author of Rich Dad, Poor Dad. Self-confidence and motivation are two major pre-requisites for anyone wishing to commence any undertaking. The crucial ingredients for starting new business are positive thinking, consistent upgrading knowledge and interacting with people.
Below are 10 innovative ways to get your business started:
1. Research: First step is to identify the business idea by researching what local community needs and that your product or service is solving that problem. Unhappy and inconvenienced customers or consumers often express desires of certain products or services that would solve their day-to-day problems or fill a void. Do not toy with the idea for too long as it will waste your precious time, instead act and start as soon as possible. There are ways to identify the need which includes research, discussion with the focus group, and pilot test (trial and error).
You need to ask fundamental questions before venturing into the new business like:
1. Does community really need this service/idea?
2. Who are my target customers?
3. Who are my competitors and how different my offering is from them?
4. How my business will accommodate in the current market scenario?
5. Gauge strengths and weakness of competition!
2. Pilot Test: Pilot test analysis and assess the potential market for your new business idea and serves as a reality check. The pilot test will route your idea into a process that will either validate or disapprove. Tip: Any idea that solves the current problem, fill the void or need that community desire is bound to get successful.
3. Planning: “Failing to plan is planning to fail.” Planning for your business is like laying a foundation for your business empire. Planning gives a clear window of future and helps in creating solutions for problems that might pop up in future. One should think ahead passionately to avoid wastage of time and chaos.
4. Finances: It is very critical to plan financials even if your business doesn’t require a lot of money. To determine whether your business plan is viable or not, financial plan carries more weight than the business plan as it is this section that will attract investors. Estimating start-up expenses realistically and jotting them in a spreadsheet is a must. There are two types of expenses which are one-time expenses and recurring expenses. Budgeting for both is necessary and for recurring expenses anticipating costs at least for a year should be prepared. One-time expenses include licenses & permit costs, property or the machine leases, launching events, marketing and branding, insurance, inventory, etc. whereas the costs for rent, production, travelling expenses, supplies, salaries, electricity bill etc., sums up the recurring costs. There are certain ways you can raise funds for your business: Savings, family and friends, bank loans, business grants, angel investors or crowd-funding. Bootstrapping is another way to commence your business which implies using minimal capital. If there is a will, there is a way hence you should navigate through various options to get the business off ground. The most vital system is your accounting system as it will help creating and managing the budget. You can either handle by yourself or hire an accountant to get it done professionally and without any loopholes.
5. Designing Business Entities: You will be required to choose your business structure by reviewing advantages and disadvantages of various structures available and choose which one will benefit you most. You can choose the entity among sole proprietorship, a partnership, a limited liability company or a corporation depending upon the size of your company and gauging which type fits your goals. Consulting chartered accountant for finalising the right structure is worth investing.
6. Choosing Business Name: Picking up a great name for your business may seem a simple task but it is indeed a daunting one. Even though it is one simple aspect of your whole business but it should meet various criteria like simplicity, alluring, legitimate and comprehensible. Ensure that it is not trademarked and try registering the name as early as possible.
7. Zeroing Location: Choosing and setting up your business location is a very critical aspect of your business. Considering the type of business required equipment and overall set up should guide you in choosing an ideal location. Whether home-setup, rent or owned but designing the space is very important as you and your team will operate there on daily basis and it is the second home for all. You will need to think about your location, equipment, and overall setup, and make sure your business location works for the type of business you will be doing. You also need to consider if it makes more sense to buy or lease your commercial space.
8. Obtaining Licenses and Permits: There will be a lot of paperwork involved whilst setting off your own business. You should research what kind of licenses and permits will be required for start-up process.
9. Setting up Your Team: Hiring is an extremely complex line of work as you need to outline the positions for vacancies at different levels. You can also think about outsourcing on a freelance basis, hire a consultant or sign an agreement.
10. Promoting Your Small Business: Devise your USP and accordingly create a marketing plan to induce clients and customers. A marketing plan will help promote your business in an effective way.
While there may be many roadblocks while starting your own business, don’t forget that success doesn’t happen overnight. For your business to lead to the success path, you will have to do things at a fast pace; the work culture should be very simple and you should be full of confidence. Instead of worrying about failure, stick to your business plan, work consistently and success is all yours!