So, you have a new great idea, looking to become your own captain, wanting to build a legacy or just sick of building up someones else's legacy. If this is you and you have a dream, be prepared for some exciting but sometimes rocky times ahead. The rewards can be great but when your starting out but a lot of work and dedication is required. You don't need to be rich and you don't need a degree to start out (it does help though 🙂 ) but you will be challenged and extended so if this is not you and you are comfortable with a weekly wage, think twice before jumping in.
This is a quick primer to get you thinking about some of the things you will need to consider. It will tie the ideas raised to other sources of information on the internet to give you a more in-depth view.
1. Identify and research your idea.
Know what it is your looking to archive with your business. Research your idea(s) to see if there is a market, what that market looks like and who is already in that market today. This is not your business plan but more getting to know the target audience that is going to be using or buying your product or service.
You may have more than one idea or service. At this stage, we are gathering information and identifying possible markets so the more information the better. Your research will help lead towards the best option for your success. Here's a couple here you may want to consider.
2. Choosing your idea(s) or niche(s) carefully.
Once you have researched and identified your best options, look at each and ask yourself, is this something I like? can I enjoy working with it? will I stick with it? If the answer is NO then move on to the next idea. Motivation is a huge factor. You have to be enjoying something and have a love for it to truly make it happen. You will understand this during the "harder" times when you have to find sources of inspiration and motivation to drive you forward. If your not enjoying it when your in the good times, you will certainly not be enjoying it during the hard times.
Create a name for your idea or service. Something that inspires you.
3. Define a business plan.
Business plans can be as in depth as you like. At the end of the day, you are the one who is going to have to execute it. This small business planning wiki can help define your business plan.
4. Goals, Goals, Goals. Set short, midterm and long term goals.
Your goals should be obtainable but should also stretch you. Allow yourself some room to move in times of change but ensure you have a set of targets or goals you can work towards all the time. Without a goal or target you have no direction!!!! Right.
5. Launch and track your progress.
You've done all your planning and ready to kick off. But hang on, what happens if ... this is an exercise you need to do to ensure you have the bases covered. Develop small contingency plans for the what if's and got ya's you can think of in your business plan. These may include engaging lawyers or getting a patent or trademarking your work. What ever it is, you will have a plan for it. You wont be able to plan for everything but the more you can think of in the early stages, the less you have to worry about later.
6. Tracking your progress and changing plans.
Track your progress towards your goals. Be flexible and if you need to, alter your plans to continue to move forward. Everything changes at a very fast pace today. Being flexible and moving with change is a basic prerequisite today. Gone are the days of creating a business plan and sticking to no matter what. You don't want to be person "still selling fax machines" while everyone is buying "internet access". (Fax machines are ... never mind ... you get the picture) You don't want to be left with a white elephant.
This is just a primer. More to come ...
Just aside, a book you might like to read is "Rich Dad's Before You Quit Your Job: 10 Real-Life Lessons Every Entrepreneur Should Know About Building a Multimillion-Dollar Business" by Robert Kiyosaki. It will prime you as well as help you to ask and answer questions of yourself.