If you are in the position of having had enough of working for others, there are always a range of steps you can take to get out of that situation. Probably one of the more exciting of these is to think about starting up your own business. This is of course a huge challenge, but it’s the kind of challenge that is doable and that plenty of people do from time to time, so you should be sure that it’s not impossible nad you are not alone. However, if you are to run your own business, you will need to make sure that you are going to approach it in the right way, and the very first thing you need to look into is working out whether or not you are actually ready to do so. In this post, we are going to take a look at some of the things you might want to do to make sure that you are truly ready to run your own business.
The Power Of The Idea
The most important thing a new business needs is a purpose to exist. This should be clear, but it’s amazing how many businesses get started that don’t actually have a clear purpose behind them. So before you do anything else, you should make sure that you have a strong idea which is going to give your business a true purpose, and which can help to get it up and moving in the first place. The trouble here is that most people struggle to recognize a good idea from a bad one. If you have an idea and you are unsure as to whether or not it is going to work, one of the best things you can do is to workshop it.
To workshop any idea, you need to talk about it out loud with other people. Ideally, they will be people who are in the know in some way, or have a certain expertise you can make use of. But even just asking an intelligent friend can often be a wise way to go. The more feedback you get, the clearer a sense you will get of whether or not your idea is any good at all, so seek out as much as you can. Be prepared for the possibility that your idea simply may not work, no matter how much you like it. Sometimes this is the hardest thing to admit, but it is always possible, so you need to get yourself ready for such an eventuality.
The more you work on your idea, the more likely it is that you will be able to find one that is going to work. Of course, you never know for absolutely certain whether or not an idea will land, so you just need to make sure that you are going for something that is as good as you can hope for. With any luck, it is something that will help to drive your business forward, and you will experience some success and luck with it in the future. In any case, you have to start somewhere, so this is where you should probably begin.
How Businesses Start
One very common mistake that a lot of people make is assuming that a business must go very fast or not at all. This isn’t quite true, and the sooner that you can get around this idea, the better. Actually, it is usually best to start up your business in a slow and steady manner, rather than trying to do it all at once. This is important because when you try to do too much too fast, you generally only end up with a less strong business and less of an idea about where to take it. Conversely, if you go slow, you will generally find that you're more likely to learn the necessary lessons along the way, as well as being able to not put too much pressure on the business in the early days. So how can you make sure that you are actually doing this in practice?
It’s actually pretty simple. All you need to do is set up a plan for your business, so that you can more easily pace it out. With the right plan in place, you will find that you can keep it going at a steady but slow pace, which is the way to make sure that it goes in the right direction. It will stop you being too stressed too, which ultimately means that you get more done. If you can do that, you will find starting up your own business much easier.
Know The Theory
Technically, absolutely anyone can start a business. As long as you have a strong idea, and you have a good attitude, starting and running a business should not be too much of a trouble. But you will find it considerably easier to do so if you also know a little theory behind running businesses and how they should operate. There is, after all, a lot of communal and shared experience out there which you can make use of, and you should absolutely think about doing so if you want to make sure that your business has the best possible chance of success. Fortunately, there are a number of ways in which you can learn about the necessary theory which should help you to start and run your business.
One of the easier methods to learn this stuff is to get an online business degree, which you can do in your spare time from home, so you know that it is relatively easy to do. You can usually take such courses at your own pace, and yet you will end up with all of the relevant information that you need to get started with your business. Alternatively, you could think about going to university to get a similar degree. This might be extensive, but for that reason will take much longer, and you probably don’t need to do that to make sure that you can start up a planned business. Get whatever knowledge you feel you need to get, but remember that the number one important thing is simply to have the relevant experience in the field you are starting your business in. If you have that, there is no reason you can’t expect to run your business with success.
Working With Others
It can be quite an interesting experience going from working for someone else to working for yourself. It’s even more interesting to then transition to having others work for you. When you start out in business, you are going to have to decide pretty early on whether or not you need others to work alongside you. Knowing whether or not you need employees is hugely important, and you can only really discover the answer to that question by planning out your business thoroughly, as that will highlight just how much work there is to do and what kind of employee base you really need. If you do think you need others, you will need to work out how many - and then you have the bittersweet experience of having to hire them.
The recruitment process is always tough, and you will quickly learn that you need to have a thick skin and not be afraid to say no to people. That can be hard, but in time you will pick it up, and learn how to do so without upsetting people too much. Apart from that, you will also need to work out how you are going to know who to hire and who to avoid hiring. It’s a good idea to draw up a list of qualities and characteristics that you feel people should have, so that you know what to look out for when you are scanning CVs and giving interviews. This will help to direct you, and it will likely prove very useful indeed for that reason.
Be fair with people, but be firm. There is little use in hiring someone who is only going to get fired in the near future, so it is better for everyone if you ensure you get the recruitment process right straight off the bat. If you can do that, you will find that you are much more likely to hire the kind of people you really need - and that is hugely important for the start of any business.
It’s never too early to start marketing, and the best methods for doing so are actually relatively easy to do. One of the very best marketing methods, for instance, is word of mouth. This really is as simple as speaking to as many people as you can about your business until more and more have heard about it. If you can do that, you will find that you are soon developing a strong reputation for your business, and that is all you really need to focus on here. You should also make a point of engaging with other free marketing tools, primary amongst them being social media. That is a hugely valuable way to promote any business, especially in the early days.
This is a contributed post and contains affiliate links.
Solicitor, Magic Circle firm
Working with Alice was a real pleasure. Her friendly, non-judgemental, helpful and practical approach helped me reach some decisions I’d been toying with - but not quite making - for a long, long time. I would encourage anyone who is looking to make a change, however big or small, to get in touch - you certainly won’t be disappointed!