Sunday, March 16, 2008

My 8 Pieces of Advice For People Starting a Small Business

Statistics show that the majority of small businesses started in the United States fail during their first 6 months. There are many reasons a business could fail, perhaps the owner didn't properly prepare for the time frame it takes a business to become profitable, maybe the owner was just not passionate about what it was he was attempting to do, or maybe he wasn't prepared for the amount of hours goes into being your own boss. Whatever the reason, there are ways to better your small businesses chance of survival and I am going to attempt to give you some quality advice from someone that has been there and done that.

When deciding to start a business be realistic with yourself about a few things:

1. You will not get rich overnight, it just won't happen, no matter who says otherwise.

2.You must be willing to put in many long hours or you must have a very large bank roll to pay others to put those hours in for you. I can remember 18-20 hour days when I first started.

3.Marketing is very important, fail to market properly and you have cut your own throat. Decide not to market at all and only friends and family will be your customers. Forget you ever heard the phrase "If you build it, they will come". How do you think they will find out you built it without marketing?

4. Research your business prior to starting it, is there another company making money doing the same thing? Can you do the same thing better than them at a lower cost ? If you answer either of these questions with "No" , the chances of you succeeding greatly drops.

5. Don't be afraid to alter your business plan, while business plans are nice to have, they are nothing more than a general guideline and sometimes situation will dictate making changes.

6. Never promise more than you can deliver, it makes your whole company look bad and you can do a perfect job 99 out of 100 times but it is the 1 time you fail to deliver that will be remembered most.

7. Do Not let whatever happened yesterday affect you today, the past can't be changed so learn from it and move on.

8. Do Not be afraid to fail, It is rare for an entrepreneurs first business idea to be a success but learn from your failures, it is fine to make mistakes as long as you don't repeatedly make the same mistake.


Bubbles said...

Concise yet very relevant. Thanks

Brenda said...

Nice post - great info and advice. Thanks.