Starting a new business is always fun and exciting! I should know. I have successfully launched 3 businesses and I am working on my fourth! But before you get carried away with the rush of starting a new venture, ask yourself a few questions.
#1. Is There a Market For My Product or Service?
Is there a market for your product? You may love it, but does anyone else? Can you convince people to part with their hard earned money? Check your competition. Is there lots of competition? Then how are you going to make your product stand out. No competition? That may be because you are the first, or it may be that there is no market for your product.
#2. Do I Have Enough Money to Get Me Through the First Year?
Do not expect to become an overnight success! It does happen, although it is rare. Starting a business can be very expensive. Just getting the word out about your product can burn through a lot of cash. Make a financial plan, assume almost no income for the first year, and make sure you have enough to cash to carry you through. Many businesses that fail, would have eventually succeeded if they had enough cash for their launch period.
#3. Do I Have a Plan?
Or maybe even two or three. You could have a marketing plan and a financial plan, but at the very least every business should have a business plan. It does not need to be complicated or long, it can be just a page or two, but it should be in writing. What are your goals for your business, and how do you expect to achieve those goals? How do you see your business one year from now, how about ten years from now?
#4. Who are my Advisers and Mentors?
Do not be a lone ranger and try to do everything yourself. Find a mentor who can give you good advice, and give a different perspective on your business. Find a tax adviser, someone who does more than just fill out tax forms. An excellent tax adviser will help you maximize the tax savings of your business, and will most likely save you more than their fees. Good legal advice will also save you money over the long term.
Answer these questions and you will be ahead of the game when it comes to starting a successful business.