5 Things You Need To Successfully Start Your Own Business!
Some entrepreneurs can sometimes be afraid of failure especially if they are first time business owners. What they may not realize is that failure does not have to mean the end of your business, but rather it is simply a teaching tool to help you coarse correct back onto the path of success. That being said, there are some things that you can do to keep you on that path longer and ensure the successful start and quicker growth of your business. I have put together five of the most essential for you here.
Write A Business Plan
Nearly all reputable business advisors will advocate you create a business plan and I would be willing to bet that any successful business you could think of has created one. If you have never written one before, it can be a little daunting and overwhelming, but it does not need to be. Think of a business plan as simply your road map to success. In your mind think of what your ultimate successful business would look like in as much detail as possible. Now reverse engineer that vision from there to where you are now. That is your business plan. Remember, that you business plan has an expiration date of 6 months so you will need to update it at least twice a year. Here are a few things you will want to include;
- Who you and your business are.
- How is your business structured and who are the key players?
- Who is your target customer and what is their most urgent need?
- What products or services do you provide and what problems do you solve for your customer?
- How do you make your customers and potential customers aware that you have the products or services to solve their most urgent need?
- How do you deliver or fulfill those products or services?
- What does it cost to do what you do and, what and when are your projected profits?
- Who else in your industry does what you do and how are you the same or different from them?
Your Business Structure
I am not a lawyer and if you do not already have a business lawyer, I strongly urge you to get one. How you structure your business will have an impact on your business both legally and how you pay your taxes. You need to make sure that both your personal and business assets are protected, and that you are not under or over paying your taxes. Each business is different and your needs in this area can change from ear to year as state and federal laws change. To help keep you on track and protected well before problems arise make sure you are giving your business a detailed once-over by trained eyes of a reputable attorney and CPA.
Business Licenses and Permits
Nothing will cause you more headache and close your business faster than not having the right business licenses and permits for your particular type of business. These days it is fairly easy to do online. Just go to your state or cities website and you can usually file for all your licenses and permits using just your debit card. They are usually sent to you in the mail. If you have a traditional brick and mortar business be sure that you post them where they are clearly visible.
Employees or Private Contractors
If you hire employees you will need a different business structure, business license, and it will impact how you are taxed. The main difference between the two is that when you have employees you shoulder more of the tax responsibilities while private contractors will carry more of the burden themselves. There are pros and cons to each way of engaging people to work for you and this is defiantly when you need to consult both your business attorney and your CPA before you hire anyone.
Particularly if you provide a service to your customer, it is vital that you have a customer contract. You customer needs to see in black and white what they can and can not expect from you and your business, how payment is expected to be paid, your refund policy, any disclaimers you may have, your privacy and confidentiality policy. When everything is clearly spelled out it makes for a much happier customer relationship and protects your business. Once again this is when you will need the help or a skilled business attorney.
I know this can all be a bit daunting when you are first getting started. To help you to a smoother and less stressful start I have created an actual Small Business Toolkit and right in the very front is a checklist broken down into segments that you can literally check off each step as you are creating the foundation of your business. Once you are ready for the next step the tools you need are already there for you and they are laid out in order so you don’t forget anything or miss an important step that could end up needlessly costing you a lot of money. We want to see you generating money, not spending it to fix needless and expensive mistakes.
Post a link to your business Twitter page in our Twitter Chat and tell us about which one of these five businesses essentials has had the biggest impact or played the biggest role in your business success below. Have a business question? I would love to hear that too! You can also Contact Us and send us a private message or join in on our Twitter chat!