The Ultimate Guide To Entrepreneurship
It doesn’t matter whether you are a newbie to the world of entrepreneurship, or whether you are a seasoned veteran of startups, there is always mammoth amounts to learn.
Entrepreneurship is forever changing and developing as technology improves, methods of working develop and marketing becomes more nuanced. Taking your first steps into this realm can be daunting yet ultimately hugely exciting too. However, there are thousands of people who talk about taking the plunge but who never do.
The fact that you are willing to say goodbye to your steady wage, your promotion prospects and reliable work pattern means that you are already committed to your endeavor.
The chances are that you’ve been considering a move into entrepreneurship for some time. Many people have a burgeoning idea but do nothing with it until a curveball that is thrown at them shifts their perspective on life.
Instead of being part of the rat race they now want to follow a passion, work for themselves and be their own boss. It is this element of regaining control and being the master of your own destiny that is so appealing to many.
However, what is it that makes entrepreneurship so perilous and what can you do to ensure that you don’t fall at the first hurdle?
- You need to be resilient, be willing to learn from your mistakes, and you need to be humble.
- Ask for help when you need it and read articles like this one, helping you through those first few months of launching your very own startup.
- Take a look at how you can become the master of your own destiny without having to forego your quality of life.
Remember, you are seeking a better work life balance, so read on to see how you can achieve this while securing a successful startup.
The most important part of any startup is the cold hard cash.
You will need to ensure that you have enough capital to get your idea up and running, you may need cash for production, supply chain, premises, cash flow and order processing. If you are launching with staff you need to keep their wages a priority.
Squandering cash is not an option, so it’s vital that you are able to manage your money effectively.
If you need to secure funding for your startup, head to the bank to seek out a loan. Don’t just turn up on a whim unprepared. This should be a meeting that you have been working towards for months.
Your business plan will form the basis of your plea for funding. It needs to be a working document and not something that you have rustled up on a couple of sheets of paper.
You need to have conducted market research, addressed any potential risks that you might face within your first eighteen months of trading, and show how you are going to mitigate this risk.
Don’t assume that risk is a bad thing. Having no risks is unreasonable and unrealistic.
Instead, show the bank manager that you can tackle this head on and overcome it.
When presenting your business plan, you need to be ready for the bank manager to read through it and pick holes in it. They will want to test and interrogate you. If they ask you about your net profit in year two, make sure you know the figure. Don’t confuse your gross and your net, and always be prepared for questions on your finances.
Sometimes the bank manager isn’t the route down which we want to go for our funding. In the twenty first century, there are plenty of options to secure the much needed cash injection to get your venture off the ground.
Look into business angels. These seemingly celestial beings are experts within their field. They come with a wealth of knowledge that you can tap, and they will also have a huge array of contacts that you can network with. If you manage to secure funding from a business angel, you are not just securing money but a worthwhile business ally.
This individual is investing in you as much as your business so they must feel like your venture has solid money making potential.
Funding can also come from crowdfunding. While a little abstract, putting your pitch online for the amateur investor to take a punt on can enhance your online presence and get your name out there.
While you might not be able to raise thousands, having hundreds of micro investors championing your venture is heartwarming and can lead to much greater exposure for your new startup.
The Power Of The Internet
Being online is crucial in the twenty first century. Businesses that refuse to move with the times and adopt a strong online presence are falling by the wayside. This is why it’s important to hone your branding and emulate this across your website and social media channels.
The mythical beast of SEO is a tough one to master but it can be a worthwhile aspect of your business to outsource to ensure that your website is optimized to appear at the top of the Google search results.
Social media is key to ensure that you remain relevant and can communicate effectively with your customer base. If you sell custom made tee shirts for toddlers, being on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram allows you to hone your business voice. This would be informal, chatty and as if you were one of the moms having a catch up over coffee.
Being this sort of business makes moms with cash to splash feel more comfortable. If they have a query they can contact you over Twitter and you can respond straight away.
Don’t be that entrepreneur that never updates their feeds or posts. You must remain relevant and post regularly to enhance your following and have your branding shared globally.
Instagram is one of the best platforms to show off your wares and services. Being highly visual you can create a product that is aspirational. If you sell worldwide tours, whip up some perfectly filtered shots of the Himalayas, the Taj Mahal and white sandy beaches. Image really is everything, so to compete with the big guns, you need to be able to show what you have to offer.
If you are finding that your startup takes off in a big way, you need to ensure that your hardware catches up. There’s nothing worse than a website crashing because it’s too busy. This is lost business. Instead, get yourself some windows VPS hosting and enjoy the perks of a private server to host your site.
With unlimited bandwidth, greater security, and your own operating system, there will be virtually zero downtime, no matter how busy your site becomes. If your social media is working well and you are managing to direct new business to your site every day, a VPS will handle the increased visitor numbers allowing your startup to go from strength to strength.
If you do find yourself having to hire staff and you rent premises, ensure that you fill the office with new laptops, rather than second hand desktops. While cheaper, they can create a false economy leading to a less productive staff team through no fault of their own.
More modern technology needs to be utilized by new businesses so don’t go for the cheaper option just because it saves you a few bucks.
Developing a staff team with high morale and strong levels of productivity can be hard. Don’t become seduced by the swanky resumes full of experience and an Ivy League college degree. Instead, opt for personality and demeanour.
Anyone can take a look at your accounts, but who can do it with a smile on their face as part of a small close knit team?
Ensure that you allow your staff to air their opinions and views. Don’t become that boss who closes off to alternative viewpoints. A good boss welcomes challenge and is willing to listen and act upon excellent ideas for the good of the business.
If you find yourself with a small staff team, make sure that they have an environment that is fit for purpose.
Forget the desktop booths and go for more collaborative working pods. This fosters an atmosphere of idea sharing, team working and water cooler moments.
You want to hear a positive buzz in the office when you walk through every day, rather than be greeted by a sea of morose faces.
Be a decent boss, and your team will buy into your vision, be productive and do their best for your business.
Being an entrepreneur is full of potential pitfalls. However, by focusing on the important aspects of your business plan such as funding, your online presence, your hardware and your staffing, you can create the perfect storm in which your business can flourish. While you may make mistakes along the way, you can learn from them and become a better business leader because of them.
© New To HR