Getting ready to start up your new business is exciting. You are going to be your own boss and determine everything from your hours to who you work with. However, you will need to take some specific steps to promote your success. Here are a few must-dos you should have before you set your plan into motion:
Clearly defining your business plan is essential to gain clarity of purpose. The more concrete you can make the details, the better. What kind of a business is it and what are you offering? Who are your customers and how are you going to reach them? What will your promotion look like? You should also consider who your competition is and how your business will set itself apart from them. Additionally you should think about the day-to-day running of your business and what that entails. Where are there possible roadblocks and how can you overcome them? What do you need to get started? And where do you see it possibly going in the future? Lastly, you will need a clean and clear budget to define how you are going to make money. If you don’t have an idea of how to create a budget, find yourself someone who can help you through it. There are many online tools out there to help you think about the questions you may need to answer for yourself. Here are two with templates and other useful hints:
Yes, we’ve just covered how your new business needs to be clearly and concretely defined. However, you must also have the ability to react and adapt to unforeseen circumstances. This might mean going against some of your initial thoughts within your strategic plan. Your market might change, new possibilities might present themselves, etc. This doesn’t mean throw your plan out the window, just be open to what comes.
Nothing comes from nothing and a little money is essential to start up a new business. The amount will of course depend on your individual needs and what kind of business you are starting. Make sure that you have enough funding to start out right. This might mean using savings or turning to friends and family to help you out. And then, of course, you can approach a bank for a formal business loan. For some specific information about doing this in Germany, you can read some tips from the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs.
According to Forbes online, a common trait among successful entrepreneurs is the ability to stay focused. This is true for every aspect of your business, whether it’s sticking to your budget or just getting things done on a daily basis. Running a business is work, and only if you are dedicated enough to stay on top of it, will it succeed. Not only does self-discipline translate to business success, but it also can attribute to your overall satisfaction and happiness. For some tips on how to stay on task, check out this advice from Entrepreneur: https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/230268
Or even better a support group! People who have more experience in your industry and are willing to share their thoughts and advice with you are invaluable, especially if you are entering uncharted waters. You can learn from their expertise and even their past mistakes. Having someone there who is willing to hash out your ideas and discuss your challenges with you is priceless. There are many local entrepreneur support groups, and Meetup.com is usually a good place to start, although there are many other locally organized ones out there.
These days, you can’t have a thriving business without having somewhat of an online presence. It used to be that you needed a team of experts to set up a website. But with hosting sites like WordPress and Squarespace, you can easily set up a basic one in a matter of hours. Along with this, some social media presence is recommended. This doesn’t necessarily have to be too extensive. With Facebook and LinkedIn, you can easily set up free business pages. Of course, even better than just having an account is to engage your audience (hopefully of potential customers) to show that you know your stuff and that your business is alive and kicking.
Yes, it seems like a rather old-school practice, but still effective. Successful business comes down to personal interactions and people are more likely to remember you handing them a business card than exchanging contact info digitally. Plus, you never know when you are going to encounter someone who could be a potential client or important contact.
Starting your own business is hard enough without the additional stress of conflict at home. To ensure that everyone in your family is buying into your new venture, try including them in the planning and/or running of things. This will involve them and get them more personally invested in your business. In the end, you will need your loved ones to support your endeavors, be understanding and give you encouragement when you need it.
Small businesses are by definition, small and are not always ideally set up at the get-go. Expect growing pains and deal with them as you go. Get over the impulse to wait for perfection to start. The sooner you start, the better. Just do it!