What advice do you have for starting a business?
I want to start a business but I'm not sure where to begin. I have taken courses on Coursera and read many business books such as Michael T. Porter's "Competitive Strategy" and Robert T. Kiyosaki's "Rich Dad Poor Dad" but I still can't figure out where to begin with creating my business model/blueprint. I'm hoping the experts here on business.com can help provide me with suggestions. Thank you!
I think you can try some industries that are not very difficult to start a business or go to the right developing country, such as China.
Well, first I would like to congratulate you on the start of your own business. I have a cleaning business small but, working. I am my one and only employee for right now but, I will grow and hire people with a desire to clean. I am also taking classes at a community college. Trying to learn all that I can about the business world. I have found that word of mouth is the best way to start a business.
This question is too broad and too general. The environment you are in, the education background you have, your preference and interest, the money you or potential investors have, the skills set of the management team, and so on...
Having started more than 10 companies and help over 50 Startups, I will try to generalize some points for you to consider:
1. Find out what is the real intention to startup a business.
2. Do an entrepreneur readiness test to see whether you are ready.
3. Have a compelling idea(s).
4. Look for a few partners, there will be conflicts but if the team is genuine, benefits will be more than disadvantages.
5. You may kick start out of a passion with a product/ service or an idea or just wanted to be an entrepreneur, but recognize this will help you to understand what you lack.
6. Make sure you apply a proven protocol to startup - do remember self finance small startup and VC/angel injected startup will have a different protocol.
7. Always perform a product-market fit! Missing this part increases business risks by 99.9%.
8. Clearly articulate your startup and what you like to achieve - make necessary updating while you perform your product-market fit.
9. This is almost 90% of startups fail to do - ensure you build your startup appropriately and positioned well for the next grow. Most startups just proceed to grow with poorly built startups.
10. Although I am in Singapore, I set up businesses in Vietnam before - so please remember to adjust your startup according to Vietnam environment, reframe to fully adopt an approach to startup, you need to customize to your needs and environment.
11. At all time, read a lot, go training a lot, get a world-class mentor, and so on... because the beginner as an entrepreneur or CEO is just like a little child going into the kindergarten.
All the best and wish prosperity,
I love being an entrepreneur even though I still work at a full-time job and do this on the side. I would rather be working on my business doing any other job. With that being said, I just want to make sure you are ready for what owning your own business actually entails. Here are some pointers to consider
1. You have no life for a while. You are married to your business and its all on your shoulders now. No life, no life and oh yeah, no life!!
2. The buck stops with you. You think your boss is bad, every customer is now your boss. They only care about what you can do them and they can be unreasonable as all get out.
3. Your business may fail, you have to be willing to take a massive risk and be able to sleep at night knowing it is on you. You also might not get a good night's sleep at all for a while. Just a heads up on that.
Now, if you still want to be your own boss after what I just said, awesome sauce!! The best business to go into would be an online business. The cost of entry is lower and the risk can be greatly minimized. You could even do it part-time and still work full time. You can do everything from flipping products on Amazon and eBay to selling courses online to creating your own YouTube channel on something you like and create value for those who watch it. The web is truly the great equalizer and untold riches can be untapped. Check out YouTube and Vimeo for free courses on how to start these businesses online. These are great starting points and it will help you get your feet wet in owning your own business.
Good luck and God Bless,
Owner of Excavation Dayton Ohio
The best approach is to start with a problem. This problem should be:
* worth to solve (not just minor),
* affect a number of people, and
* clearly defined.
Very often people prefer problems which are also something they are passionate about. You will work many hours without much a return on your business, so being passionate about the idea helps a lot to stick through the pain.
Analyze some relevant business and there strength and week point. Then think about your business what is your strength and week point and take a decision. Its called SWAT.
When it comes to starting a business, understanding the pulse of the market, the target audience, business activity, location, government regulations, logistics, export/import, talent pool, support infrastructure, there is a lot of checks.
In the real world, the management concepts and marketing, the business strategy might not be applied directly, each business is different and has to be taken forward that way. Understand the competition, demand for your product, use digital marketing to analyze your audience response to your services, become a thought-leader in your domain
Apply strategies and management concepts with real-life experiences and always do a test phase before you set out something large.
For business setup requirements, paperwork, admin tasks, it best to go ahead with a business service consultant to save time, effort and costs. You would be surprised by the amount of documentation and clearances required to set up your dream company.
It's alright to be overwhelmed - starting a business from scratch and making sure it stays profitable, isn't something that one master overnight, or through completing courses. Think of it as a journey or process of sorts, instead.
My advice is to do more research and identify gaps in the market that you could fill in. Focus on the value that you'd like to deliver to the people around you.
In my experience, that's ultimately what a successful business comes down to.
The very first thing I would ask you is - why you want to start a business and are you aware of the life you will live and sacrifices you will make? I know it all sounds great, and there are plenty of references to success in the world, but it comes at a cost. Are you risk-averse? Do you have a high sense of urgency? Are you social? Are you a more big picture or a detail-oriented person? If you don’t fit the model of an entrepreneur, you will shave years off your lifespan. It's only for a small group of people. Keep in mind that lots of people get rich, selling the dream of being your own boss.
Realize that the percentage of financially successful businesses is extremely small. A sad fact is that in ten years, a whopping 96% of companies fail – and it continues to go down from there.
For a viable business, you must solve a problem. I know it sounds simple, but it’s not. Are people willing to line up and pay you money for your solution?
Ask yourself, can you scale the business? If so, what would that look like and what would be required, from people, talent, space, locations, and capital. BTW, it's not necessary to scale; you can make a conscious decision to stay small – growth for the sale of growth is foolish.
How do you get out of the business and when do you get out. Please don’t laugh; this is as important as solving a problem and far too many people never think about this question until its too late. What would a buyer look like and what might they pay for your business.
What does your daily life look like? Are you hands-on 16 hours a day, seven days a week? If so, for how long? What are the steps required to change that, and at what point in revenue would that be ideally done?
Ponder the pros and cons of a service business, recurring revenue model, luxury market, commodity markets as well as B2B and B2C scenarios. Each model has as many cons as they have pros.
Start with what you are the master in. Start providing solutions to people or providing value that they like the most and mind well never just work for money. This has not to be your core objective for the business. Just give something before asking for it.
Good question! I'm a staff writer for business.com and recently wrote an article on our sister site, Business News Daily, about the topic. The piece addresses starting a business in the U.S., but many of the principles still apply if you're starting a business abroad. Here's a link to the piece: https://www.businessnewsdaily.com/4686-how-to-start-a-business.html.
If you have any other specific questions, let me know!