Going into business is a huge step to take. Whilst working for somebody else has its downsides (and quite a lot of them, at that), you need to make sure that you know what you’re doing before you dive into the world of being an entrepreneur, and there are a few questions that you need to ask yourself in order to be certain that you’re doing the right thing.
We’ve put together five of them here, so that you can go into business safe in the knowledge that you’ve prepared as well as you can for the success that you deserve!
1. Is this person a good business partner?
The likelihood is that you’re going into business with somebody else, and before you sign up to working alongside this person, you need to make sure that they’re the right business partner for you. It’s a good idea to make sure that they have strong values, integrity, and that they will be honest with you so that you can make the business work together. However, a business partner can have all of these respectable traits, but still not be the right fit due to issues with communication. Find somebody who you can talk to, as you’ll need to have important discussions when you’re going through stressful times.
2. Are you going to bring something valuable to your customers?
There are many businesses in operation that don’t start out with the intention of bringing something valuable to their customers, and they have to learn the hard way that a business without passion and values is a lot harder to run. If you wake up every day, and drive to work knowing that you are providing a useful and important service, it will make your role as an entrepreneur a lot easier, and a lot more rewarding. Of course, it’s important to find gaps in the market, but you may be able to find a niche in your field that works because the passion is there, so think about this before you start out.
3. Do you know the fundamentals?
Business is one of those things that you learn about as you go along, but in order to make a success out of it, knowing the fundamentals before you begin is key. For example, do you have the sufficient knowledge about tax, legal processes, contacting an appeals lawyer in case of any issues, and the financial side of running a business? If you don’t educate yourself on these things – or get educated by somebody else – then you could risk seeing your business fail within your first few months as an entrepreneur. Prepare yourself, and learn all that you can about business before you get the ball rolling.
4. Do you have a business plan?
Whatever field you’re going into, however big or small your business is, and whatever you’re hoping to get out of this endeavour, you need to have a business plan. If you’re new to being an entrepreneur, you will soon discover the importance of planning, and you will also see that without a plan, problems are much more likely to occur. Even if you only have a plan to give yourself a sense of security (and the feeling that you’re not at the helm of a business that doesn’t know where it’s going) you need to make sure you’ve got one. Focus on your finances, the direction of your company, and your annual profit expectations and startup run rate.
5. Are you ready to sacrifice?
All successful entrepreneurs have to sacrifice something, whether it is their current job role, their social lives, or the time that they would usually spend with their families. The truth is that if you want to be successful, you have to be putting the hours in, as your competitors are going to be doing this, too. Of course, it’s better to work smart than to work hard if you can do this, but the likelihood is that in your first few months of business, you’ll need to sacrifice some things in order to keep it going. Before you start out, ask yourself whether you’re ready to sacrifice these things for a while.
So, if you’re about to start out as an entrepreneur, you need to ask yourself a multitude of questions, but these are some of the most fundamental ones. Whatever you decide to go into, make sure that you’re not just stumbling into it blindly, and you could be on the road to business success in no time. Enjoy being an entrepreneur!