New Business? Your To-Do List to Start Your Own CompanyOlivia Katulka
Stop me if you’ve heard this narrative before:
You choose your field and find the company that you will eventually dedicate yourself to for decades before retirement comes knocking on your door offering beach trips and endless days with grandchildren and bingo.
Yeah – this doesn’t even happen to baby boomers anymore.
Instead, Americans are now turning the page to the next chapter. In fact, they may be closing that book entirely. According to the New York Post, 62% of Americans hope to make their dreams a reality by starting their own business in 2018.
Take it Into Your Own Hands
Although new businesses are started by people that span many generations and age demographics, millennials are discovering that becoming your own boss is
the most attractive job opportunity for them and their families.
In an article from January 2018, Forbes laid out why millennials are turning to entrepreneurship rather than working up the typical workplace totem pole; the insight is rather staggering.
After watching their parents experience tragic financial problems that resulted from the 2008 economic crash, millennials are relying on themselves when it comes to their finances – simply because you can’t trust anyone else.
Starting a business can be unsettling, especially if Business Administration isn’t at the top of your resume. Even business tycoons were “newbies” at some point when they established their first start-up. No matter how educated or experienced, everyone is eventually thrown into the fire.
Your success depends on how well you handle the obstacles that come with being an entrepreneur.
I’m sure you are wondering if you are doing everything right by your new business. There is not a definitive right way to start a business, but there are some things you should check off your list along the way.
Here are some things you may need to add to your agenda if your business is fresh to the scene:
Idea for a New Business
Your business could be just about anything. Whether it’s chasing your dream of starting a creative agency, building a custom design company, or finally opening that restaurant you have always toyed around with, ideas are the most fun part of planning your business.
But if you’ve already started your business, that means the lightbulb above your head has already been sparked. So, you can check this one off the list.
If you’ve earned a degree in business administration already know how important it is to come up with a business plan before venturing into the depths of your industry.
Having a plan set in place is a great resource when you run into business-related predicaments. It is also useful to have this in your back pocket (or filing cabinet – whichever you prefer) when you are looking for investors or business financing.
Your business plan should contain the following information and any additional content that applies to your business:
Your company background is crucial to include so that whoever is reading over your business plan knows exactly who and what your business is.
Finding out what financial future is ahead for your business can help not only investors/lenders, but it can also help you as the business owner dictate what strategies you should implement to increase revenue and stimulate growth.
Risks and Survival Strategies:
This may seem like a counterproductive game plan, but when your small business is seeking investments or small business funding, it is a great way to show them that you have thoroughly thought out how you would handle potential risks or disasters. It shows you are reliable and take your success seriously.
There are many strategies that can help you grow your business. But it is up to you to evaluate your company and the industry it falls under to decide which strategy would best increase your growth. Would an additional location add to your growth? Consider the Multiple Location strategy. Whereas, if you believe taking on another client would help boost your sales, try the New Client Acquisition strategy. There are so many different gameplans that could benefit your small business, but it’s yours to decide.
Here is another one that seems to oppose the whole plan to own a business, however, there are benefits to including this in your business plan.
No matter what your exit plan is, each one has factors that affect the way you run your business today. If you want to eventually enter the stock market, there are regulations that your business is expected to have followed from the start. If you plan to run it dry, you need to be sure to pay off all of your debt before doing so. This all is about preparation – don’t let it scare you.
If you are totally new to being an entrepreneur, don’t fret – we’ve found an excellent blueprint on how to create a one-page business plan. Keeping it simple and low cost is the best way to make sure your business is set up for success.
Set Your Budget
We all know that money doesn’t grow on trees. If that were the case, you would find me at the tallest tree in town yelling, “Dibs!”
Until our dreams become reality, it is important to set a budget for your new business – a realistic one.
That last thing you should ever do when building a business is to lie to yourself. You need to be aware of your current standings so that you can act accordingly. When it comes time to set your budget, be completely realistic and honest with yourself so that you don’t set yourself up for failure.
You’re going to need to establish what your expenses are versus your revenue to find out how much working capital you have to work with. As a savvy business owner, it would be wise to factor in any unexpected expenses; the unexpected should be – well, expected.
You’ll want to have cash stowed away for situations like this. It’s hard to be prepared for everything, but you will, in fact, need to be prepared for anything.
Another key thing to remember about your budget – revisit it frequently.
Just because you set your budget today, doesn’t mean it will remain the same tomorrow. Your business could take a financial hit leaving your budget more restricted or you could land a large purchase order and have a significant increase in sales. Either way, you need to reevaluate your budget often to keep up with the fluid lifestyle your business will endure.
There are many ways that business owners raise the funds they need to start a business including loans and micro-donations. With all the available resources to obtain that capital, you will need, you should find the outlet which will work best with your situation.
You could fund your startup with your personal bank account, but this method requires you to pull up your bootstraps and work hard – and risk everything, as well. That’s why it’s known as “Bootstrapping,” according to Small Business Trends.
You could also turn to bank or SBA loans to help finance your business, however, the qualifications are strict and the wait time is anything but convenient. Online business funders started gaining popularity within the last decade with their flexible requirements and speedy process.
If your new business is having trouble with an inventory purchase order or having the ability to hire a skillful staff, online funders like Fast Capital 360 can help you access funding to grow your business.
When you are looking to get the funds you need for your recent small business, small business funding through an online resource can be the answer you are looking for without hassle or frustration.
Small business owners also utilize resources such as crowdfunding to get the capital they need to support their company. Crowdfunding websites like Kickstarter are available to you if you think people would be willing to make micro-donations to your company.
Build Your Website
With your latest small business in the works, I certainly hope you have a website available. If you don’t, this is a crucial step in building a successful company. In the digital world we live in today, it is absolutely necessary to have an online presence. Whether it be to help customers locate your store or provide a place for consumers to buy your products, there are many reasons as to why you need to invest in a website. Plain and simple.
On top of that, you can also build social media profiles to interact with your audience. This strategy can help you know what needs to be changed within your company and find out what is working.
Make a Difference
It is totally okay to feel a bit lost in the first year (or more) of establishing a business – especially if you have never done it before. Gaining your independence from the workforce is tough, but it’s definitely not impossible.
Being your own boss may seem like a lot of work, but it is one of the most rewarding jobs to have. You can make a difference within your industry when you take control – you just need to be sure you do everything you can to help build and grow your business each and every day. It may take time – so you better get started!