A HELPFUL GUIDE DETAILING THE STEPS TO CONSIDER WHEN LAUNCHING YOUR VERY OWN SMALL BUSINESS
- HAVE AN IDEA BUT NOT SURE IT’LL WORK.
Thinking through the potential of an idea is an important part of starting a business. Do research and gather data that can help decide if it’ll work.
– What are the practical realities of running my own business?
– What skills and abilities should I focus on to be successful?
– Does my business idea really excite me?
- I’VE DONE SOME PRELIMINARY RESEARCH, WHAT ELSE SHOULD I CONSIDER?
Consider various types of research to make sure you have a complete picture. Conduct surveys and interviews with potential customers, gather data from public sources and research your competitors to understand the strengths and weaknesses of those selling a similar product or service.
The types of questions you may ask will depend on the product or service. However, you should always include questions to determine the following:
– Preference (flavours, features, how they prefer the service to be delivered to them)
– Consumer behavior (how often they would purchase this type of product or service?)
– Pricing (how much do they currently pay for this service? Are you able to compete?)
- I’VE GOT A VISION FOR MY BUSINESS BUT IT’S STILL A WORK IN PROGRESS
You should spend some time establishing a clear vision statement; this is a critical step in planning a business. It should define what you expect your business to be in the future.
– Include what you would like your company to be in 2, 5 and 10 years.
– Your vision statement should be succinct, vivid and inspiring.
– Your business vision should align with your personal vision and goals.
- IS HAVING A BUSINESS PLAN REALLY ALL THAT IMPORTANT?
YES. A business plan will outline your short and long term objectives, and most importantly it will help you see whether your business makes financial and operating sense. It is essential.
– Include your short & long terms goals and how you’ll accomplish them.
– Show an understanding of the market, the competition and your customers.
– Indicate how you intend to finance your business.
- IS THERE ANYONE ELSE WHO SHOULD BE ADVISING ME ON MY BUSINESS?
As a small business owner you will be called on to wear many hats in order to run your business. Involving the right advisors early on will help you be more successful in your business venture.
– Include a lawyer, an accountant and a small business advisor on your team.
– Make sure your advisors are qualified and specialized, referrals are best.
– Choose advisors who are compatible with you and understand your needs.
- HOW DO I SECURE THE FINANCING I NEED TO START MY BUSINESS?
A combination of financial sources may be the best way to raise the money you need to launch your business; including loans, credit lines and credit cards. To prepare for getting financing make sure that.
– Your business plan is up to date and has clear measurable goals.
– Your financial statements give an accurate picture of your finances.
– Have your accountant review both your personal & business statements.
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