When times get tough at work, nothing seems more tempting than working for yourself. After all, you can pick your hours, your responsibilities, and everything in between, and you don’t have to answer to anyone but you. However, it’s vital that you also recognise that starting a business isn’t easy and that there is a lot of work that needs to be done before you can consider yourself successful. To help you get a clearer picture of what could be in store, here are four things that you need to consider before starting a business.
- The Idea
Before you can start to plan anything else, you need to come up with a great idea of something that your business can sell. This could be a product or a service, but it needs to be unique and marketable. If you haven’t got any ideas yet, then take a look at a few problems you face in your personal life, and see if you can come up with a product or service to solve one of these issues. Doing this means you’ll be passionate about your business, which will be a great motivator.
- The Legalities
The legalities of business can get quite complex and complicated, but they’re something that needs to be followed if you’re to avoid getting into trouble with the law. Because of this, you may want to consider speaking to professionals to help you out. For example, an agency like Your Company Formations is useful if you intend to trade as a limited company. You’ll also need to make sure that you’ve got any required permits and licenses before you start trading.
- The Plan
Many entrepreneurs decide against writing out a proper business plan and instead opt to “wing it” and save themselves time and energy. However, drawing up a plan is always a useful idea, as it helps to guide you through the rough times, and gives you the motivation needed to achieve your goals. It’s also a vital tool if you intend to borrow money to finance your business. Thankfully, this task is also rarely as time-consuming as people think, so there’s no excuse not to have one.
- The Money
If businesses could be built on passion and willpower alone, then many more people would be running them. Unfortunately, they aren’t, and often need a fair chunk of cash to get going. Most entrepreneurs finance their startups themselves, using savings, but if this is something that you can’t do, then you’ll need to consider alternatives. These include lending from banks and angel investors, borrowing from friends and family, and crowdfunding from lots of people online.
Starting a business of your own is a huge decision, and as such, requires a lot of thought. After all, the last thing that you likely want is to be among the many small businesses that fail every year. Before making any solid plans, make sure that you understand what you’re getting yourself into, and that you have support available when you need it.
This post has been contributed by Ryan Gatt, it may contain affiliate links.