Anyone who has ever spoken to an entrepreneur knows that starting a business is almost the easy part – it’s keeping it running and profitable that’s the real challenge.
But we also know that getting the idea off the ground at all is tough, so we put together this short guide on the steps you can take to give yourself the best possible shot at success.
This is for anyone currently considering making the leap from employee to owner, anyone who has a dream for a business, and anyone who has a great idea for a business but who isn’t sure what steps they should take toward making it a reality.
Step 1: Be realistic
The first major step towards launching your own business is to be absolutely brutally honest with yourself when it comes to evaluating your own strengths and weaknesses. If you don’t do this, something you overlooked or didn’t admit to yourself as you got going is going to come along later and bite your bum.
Step 2: Keep it simple
Making complicated things seem simple is a rare skill, but it’s vital that you apply this principle to your business plan. When starting out, you need a business plan that is simple and straightforward and which makes goals and milestones crystal clear to all stakeholders.
If your business plan is simple but it works, only then should you look at scaling up. The old adage of “Don’t bite off more than you can chew” applies here.
Step 3: Focus on your passions
A business you have passion for is a business that has a great chance of taking off. When your business is all about things that you’re passionate about, the momentum of your interest and personal investment will pick you up and carry you forward.
And it will happen far more easily than if your business came from an idea that you thought could work, but which doesn’t exactly light you up from within.
Step 4: Know your target market
Even the greatest business ideas are going to flop if you don’t understand the market you’re operating in or you don’t have a clear idea of who your ideal customer is.
Do your research before starting out and make 100% sure that there is demand for the thing you’re going to be providing, in the place you’re going to be providing it, and that you have a clear understanding of your potential customers’ needs and wants.
Step 5: Ask for help when you need it
Many of us don’t like asking for help at all, for a variety of reasons. But when it comes to starting a business, the best thing you can do is to just get over yourself and ask for assistance if you need it.
There are plenty of resources available, from governmental advisory services to organisations dedicated to helping entrepreneurs overcome whatever they’re facing.
Here are a few online resources you can draw on right now if you need to:
By reaching out and talking to people that know all about small businesses and who’ve been where you are right now, you’re joining a community of experienced, like-minded people who can guide you to where you want to go.
Whether that’s with advice, tips on how to secure funding or general support, the resources to help you succeed are closer than you might think.
Be an entrepreneur
These are by no means the only steps you will take on your entrepreneurship journey, but they are essential, so don’t skip any of them. They have the potential to help you get going and build momentum, and sometimes, that’s all anyone needs.
May you find what you need in your journey to success!