Starting a business is a nerve-wracking experience. Whether you’re considering giving up the day job and trying your luck at becoming the next Elon Musk or earning some extra cash on the side as a part-time hustle, these five essentials must be on your priority list before doing so.
1. Equip yourself with the required skills
Before starting anything that impacts you and, of course, your bank balance, ask yourself this: Am I prepared for the challenge at hand? Do I have the necessary skills I need to run this business?
You might want to hold your horses and tick that off your to-do list if the answer’s a no.
Running a business is a holistic process. Just because you think you know the market or are an expert on a particular product doesn’t guarantee success or company growth. All it guarantees is a money pit you won’t be equipped to handle when the cash starts flowing in and your business expands into multiple departments.
To always have that ace up your sleeve, consider enhancing your skillset before stepping into uncharted waters.
Analysis techniques, economics, accounting, or a degree closely linked to the product/service you plan to sell would be monumental to how you make your first sales pitch and the number of clients you attract.
Perhaps a degree in Data Analytics or, more popularly, an MBA be your locomotive to success, so have some accredited MBA schools narrowed down.
Soft skills such as leadership and team management also play a huge role in how you multiply your productivity and successfully start your business.
In addition, think carefully about the areas you’re lacking and work on setting them right.
2. Identify what problem your business solves
Every successful business identifies an issue or need in a particular group of people and solves it. You need to do the same. Not only that but your product or service must also be at the top of its game and solve that problem faster, better, and more remarkable than its market competitors.
A smart and proven way would be to ask around and conduct surveys. These could be online or in-person, whatever you are comfortable with, though a combination of both would be the best.
Ask the targeted consumer what product or service they would want for a particular problem; without revealing too much about your business to potential copycats, ask them how much they’d be willing to spend to solve it.
After such a thorough analysis, the last thing to do is figure out how to cater your business to these masses and identify ways to monetize it profitably.
3. Niche and market
Does your business serve people in general, or does it only cater to a small but profitable group? Remember, your market campaigns are ineffective if you haven’t figured out who you’re advertising to. Every kind of group requires unique and special attention. One size doesn’t fit all. For this reason, you need to look closely at the niche you’ll be working with.
A market survey shouldn’t be too far behind either. A burgeoning market doesn’t mean you will successfully establish your business. You need to know if you’re capable and knowledgeable about that market. If you’re not, consider shifting your passion towards another one, but if you’re adamant that the one you’re eyeing is the true jackpot, put more effort into learning about the ins and outs of the market.
Get both information and practical experience to polish your preparation for starting your business fully.
4. Draft a finance and marketing plan
Drafting a finance and marketing plan should be the next logical step.
Who’ll be investing in your business, purchasing your product/service, and how you’ll convince them to jump on board is the million-dollar question you must have a cheap and quick answer to.
If you haven’t already found sponsors and people to financially support you, you better hurry and start scouting them now.
5. Have a strong support system
Alone you can go faster, but as a team, you can go further. And in a business, sometimes what matters isn’t how fast you achieve success; after all, success can be fickle and short-lived. What matters is your resilience and ability to stand the test of time. And how much sustainable growth and profit you can make over a long period.
For your business to soar high, a solid, loyal, hardworking team and support system is mandatory.
These could start from friends and family and eventually expand to the employees you hire. Their values should be inclined towards your company values, and they must be passionate about the work you plan to do and create.
Ready, get set, go
If you’ve crossed out the five things mentioned earlier, congratulations. You are now ready to start your own business and are holistically prepared to deal with its ups and downs.
Hope you enjoyed the article thoroughly and got a gist of what important things you must do before starting a business – whether a small or big business.