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What to consider when Starting a Small Business, Part One

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Are you thinking about starting a small business?

It can be an exciting and challenging endeavor, although it’s more likely to succeed if you plan ahead, take it step by step, and surround yourself with trusted, experienced advisers.  Of course, such an important endeavor – not to mention a life alternating event – requires hard work, ingenuity and more than a little legal advice.   You can start by going to our webpage on What to Ask When Staring a Business.

Keep in mind that there might never be an absolutely perfect time to start your own business – so for starters you need to take stock of your mental state and make sure you’re as ready as you will ever feel.  

Part of that question is whether you’re enough of a self-starter to maintain momentum and handle the various responsibilities involved in getting a business launched.

If the answer to that set of questions is “yes,” the next step is to determine what type of business you want to start.  Among the questions to ask yourself is whether you simply want to own a business or actively run it yourself. Particularly if the answer is the latter, it’s important to explore your passions, and it’s smart to create a list of those to help you brainstorm and figure out if you have a hobby that might lend itself. It’s also important to satisfy yourself that you have particular skills and experience needed to succeed in the endeavor in question.

Other questions include whether you want to go solo—say by building a consulting business in an area of expertise that would not require any hires—or whether you would prefer to lead a team of people in opening the doors to a new retail outlet, for example. And you should research how the sector you are thinking about entering is currently performing, to make sure it’s a growth business and not a declining one. 

As a corollary to that question, you need to examine who your competitors would be, and how you would compete and win against them. And you should calculate a metric of how many customers you would need to have, and how regularly, to reach the profit margin you would like to achieve, at least over time.

Once you have chosen your type of business, it’s time to think about your business model—in short, the strategy you have in mind to bring your idea to market, show potential customers what they have to gain from your product or service, and ultimately earn a profit. Among the many business models you might choose are e-commerce, software-as-a-service, coaching and consulting, and providing a freelance service like writing, designing or programming.

Once you explore those questions, you’re still several steps from being ready to open your doors. We will explore those steps in a series of weekly posts this month, so stay tuned!  

You can also explore some of the many resources we offer on our web site (https://www.bellas-wachowski.com/business-law.html) to new and established business owners.  Experience matters.  We have been helping businesses get started since 1971.