5 Things to Consider Before Starting Your Own Business

Starting your own business is a practical alternative to job searching, as long as you do your homework on the logistics and strongly consider the following points.Have you made it a goal to start your own small business? It’s an admirable endeavor, and often a smart move, especially as corporate America is increasingly downsizing and outsourcing. Starting your own business is a practical alternative to job searching, as long as you do your homework on the logistics and strongly consider the following points.

1. Money

Do you have enough? Be honest with yourself. You will need enough money to buy (or even rent) equipment, purchase inventory, obtain insurance and develop marketing. Furthermore, can you afford to hire employees, either full or part time? Can your business stay afloat if you don’t meet sales projections right away?

“It’s more common than not for new businesses to fail in the first year or two and to not operate in the black until the third year or even later,” says Arnie Fertig, MPA, in U.S. News & World Report. “One of the most prevalent causes of failure is undercapitalization from the onset.”

2. Drive

Can you do it all? In order to succeed, you will need to have the true motivation to do so, and that also includes the humility — and ability — to take on tasks you are not used to. Perhaps at your last corporate job, you had an established set of responsibilities. With a new startup, that will not be so. You will be acting as reception, maintenance, marketing and more. Do you have time for that? Do you have the skills to complete these tasks effectively? These are all questions to contemplate before starting your business.

3. Work Environment

Will you miss the conversations had daily by the watercooler? Oftentimes in a new small business, you are the only employee. While it’s great that you are accountable only for yourself, it can also be a double-edged sword — and feel a bit isolating.

“When you are at home, it’s easy to be distracted by this or that task that ‘just has to get done,’ and despite your best intentions, it can be hard to carve out the hours necessary to get your business off the ground,” Fertig explains.

4. Passion

Although you are obviously passionate about the subject of your business, you must also be passionate about selling those goods or services. People often turn hobbies into businesses, but they are quick to learn that a business is about a lot more than having fun. Are you willing to spend more time helping others do what you love to do than actually doing it yourself?

5. Distinction

“Are you prepared with a solid answer to this question: Why would anyone besides your friends, family and existing contacts want or need to do business with you?” Fertig offers.

You need to be able to differentiate your business from others that offer similar goods and services. Usually this happens through marketing, so plan to work with an expert to position your business as better-quality or more economical than the competition.

If you can assuredly answer all of these questions and still feel excited about the prospect of your business, then you should feel confident moving forward in the process of starting your company. With any luck, you will find both financial success and personal fulfillment.


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