You want to start a business? Excellent!!
Starting a business can be very exciting, but, it can also be very nerve wracking and scary. But, with the right focus, the right timing, and taking scary out of the equation, you can successfully start a business!
I have put together a list of 5 questions for you to ask yourself to help you decide if starting a new business is right for you, and if so, how to find YOUR business.
1. Can you afford to start a business?
First, it is so important that you have money put away so that you can live comfortably while you start a business. Starting a business will take alot of your time and effort. The last thing you will want to worry about is how to put food on the table.
Recognize that most start-ups take anywhere from 6 to 12 months before they see any money coming in. So, be sure you have a little nest egg before you make the jump.
2. Is it the right business for YOU?
You have alot of skills. You are talented, bright, energetic and are excited for this new chapter in your life. This business is for YOU, not anyone else, and not for anyone to tell you no, you can’t do it. I am here to tell you, YES!! YES you can do it! And YES, you will be great at it!!
So, how do you get there?
Take the time to write down the things you are good/bad at, the things you do/don’t like doing, and the things you fear/welcome. Be honest with yourself. Take a good look at your pros and cons. The more honest you are with yourself before you start a business, the more pitfalls you will be able to avoid.
When you think of ideas for your new business, think about you…….who you are, what drives you? Then match your skills and likes and dislikes with a business. For instance, if you don’t like to sit behind a desk, then you won’t want to start a business that puts you behind a desk. If you like being outdoors, then by all means, find a business that puts you outdoors. Simple. But, not everyone does it.
YOU fit the business. The business does NOT fit you. Because in the end, YOU are the business!
Your passion will drive you, your passion will get you up in the morning and your passion will keep you going when you don’t want to.
In addition to passion, you should have some knowledge or experience in the business or industry you want to get into. Of course, you could learn from scratch if you absolutely needed to, or just have a desire to completely start afresh.
3. Do you Hear the Need?
Listen for the need in the marketplace. Listen. Listen. Listen.
How do you listen?
You listen with your eyes.
Read magazines, articles, online resources, comments that people make about a product, industry, business, etc., look for complaints, look for things people want/need that the marketplace is not meeting. Seek and ye shall find!
The Most Dangerous Person is the one who listens, thinks and observes. – Bruce Lee
You will find a niche, you will find a need, keep after it!! Then, once you have found it, address it, fulfill with your new business, and voila, you are off to the races.
4. Brainstorming sessions?
This is the fun part. Brainstorm and put your ideas down on a piece of paper, or in a computer. Just keep typing, writing, and let the ideas come. Don’t critique them, not yet. Spend a good week or two or three or more brainstorming. However long it takes you. Put all your ideas, solutions, concepts, theories, etc. down, no matter how crazy, silly, or far-reaching they may be, put them down.
After you have done that, take a break. Leave it alone for a day.
Come back the next day, refreshed, and read your list. Then, read it again. Then, start eliminating and narrowing down the ideas and concepts you think will work. Get your list down to 2 or 3 ideas.
Then, expand on these ideas and thoughts further. And brainstorm again. Same process as above. Take another week or two or three. It’s important you do this to flush out all of your creativity and exhaust all your ideas.
Once you have your list, take another break. Leave it alone for a day.
And then come back the next day and start your homework – #5 below.
5. Homework done?
Now the work begins.
Surely you want to start a business, but first, there’s work to be done. But, this last step is critical to the success of your business. Without thorough research, know-how, etc., it will be extremely difficult to start a business.
What work you say?
First, take a look at your competitors in the industry. Study them – learn what they do, learn what they don’t do. Can you do it better, faster, cheaper? Get to know your competition. Get to know your industry. Learn from other people’s mistakes, it will save you alot of money in the long run.
And, if at all possible, go and see your competition in action. Go to them, watch, listen, and listen for what is missing, listen for what customers, consumers, clients, etc., are saying. Be a student in your business.
Now, if there is no competition, then either there’s no money to be made (very possible), or hallelujah, you could be on your way to being the next Google!
I hope this blog provides you with some insight into yourself, what you want, what you are after, and how to get there so you can realize your goals and dreams.
Remember, we climb a ladder one rung at a time.