6 Start-up Tips For New Entrepreneurs
How did you become an entrepreneur? Was it something you always wanted to do or did you have an ‘ah ha’ moment that propelled you into a new career path?
For my self was it was a comfort level I already knew existed. Having been employed full-time out of school for nearly five years, deep down I had an itch to become my own boss. That’s how I imagined it growing up as a kid with dreams of business ownership and the ability to create something out of nothing.
Despite the failure rates surrounding any start-up business, I wanted to give my business idea a go, and succeed while avoiding to become another negative statistic.
Almost four years later after the launch of my commercial cleaning business, the drive to continue being a business owner still exists within me, and the business its self is thriving. That’s why I wanted to take a minute today, and share with you 6 tips when starting your own small business.
1. Research Ahead
Research is typically dull and boring, but researching your market, competition, industry trends, target market is essential to inform you on what steps you need to take to make your business a success.
2. What makes your different?
Every industry has its big players, and the bottom feeders that get a bone thrown their way. In order for your business to succeed you need to have a clear idea about what problem your business is solving, and how are you going to do it differently than your predecessors
Ask your self: What am I going to do in order to do things better than my competition?
3. Listen & Accept Feedback
You’d be surprised at how many people have poor listening skills. They let their egos get in the way. Rather than being students of the business, they throw their half-ass knowledge out. You can be different though, by simply listening, asking and accepting feedback. Trust me, this is where you’ll learn a lot about your business and possibly about your self as well.
You’re probably thinking now; “This is so obvious.” However, you’d be surprised at how many new small business owners forget about basics like this.
4.Try to Have a Debt Free Start-up
Poor cash-flow is one of the biggest reasons why small businesses fail to make it to the next level. Failing to manage money properly in the early stages of your business can make the numbers hard to stack up. One sure way to avoid cash-flow pitfalls is to have a debt free start-up or with little debt as possible. Maxing out credit-cards will only make it harder down the road as the monthly bills keep on piling up. Eventually you’ll be paying everyone else, and have nothing left over for your self.
5. Outsource As You Need To
In the every early stages of your small business you’ll probably be the marketing person, accountant, advertising rep, sales rep and the general office clerk. Eventually business will start to pickup, and your skills will be more useful elsewhere. This is the point where you need to suck it up, accept it, and spend a little money by outsourcing certain tasks.
More importantly, you as the small business owner needs to recognize that you won’t be great at everything. So, why not pass it onto someone who’s more skilled and knowledgeable.
Develop a relationship with your accountant, graphic designer or your printer, treat them as a business colleague vs. an expense. Eventually through time and many business transactions, you’ll develop a relationship beyond a business, and these people will become someone you can bounce ideas off, and someone who’ll make recommendations for your business as well.
6. Test and More Test
Thousands of people right now are holding down full-time jobs while starting a small business. I was one of those people, and for the most part still am today. My day doesn’t end at 5. It instead continues sometimes well into the night. People who work like this are often referred to as the 5-9 shift, although in reality the hours are much longer.
The beautiful part of testing the 5-9 shift is that you don’t have to commit to your business full-time, still earn a living, and more importantly test whether your small business and being an entrepreneur is right for you.
Readers, can you suggest anymore tips for new entrepreneurs?