Do you have a great idea for a new product or service? Are you thinking of flying solo and starting your own business? Great! Before you embark on your new venture, however, be honest and ask yourself “Do I have the right skills to start my own business?” If you’re not 100% sure, read on. Below you’ll find some of the basic things you’ll need to know and be able to do in order to get your business off the ground and to make it profitable.
All businesses must at some point in time, undertake marketing. This covers areas such as logo and/or brand development, business stationery, printed materials, advertising, social media and other web-based activities. Before you even ‘go to market’ with your business idea, you must first identify a need or desire for it by undertaking some market research. If you’re providing a service like mechanical repairs or book-keeping, you don’t really need to go to this effort, but you will need to check out your competition and determine how you can differentiate yourself in your local market. For start-up ventures, marketing can make or break you, so it’s important to know what you’re doing. You don’t need to go and do a degree in marketing; just brush up on some key marketing principles and adhere to them. Some courses, such as a Diploma of Business Management, will provide you with all the marketing know-how you need in order to start your own business.
While many new businesses are solo ventures, you may need to employee staff in order to start up or shortly thereafter. There are a number of things you’ll need to know about here:
- The best ways to recruit the people you need
- Interviewing candidates and selecting the right person for the job
- Organising and submitting all relevant government paperwork (e.g. taxation documents).
In addition, you’ll need to understand some basic principles of how to manage staff and to deal with any issues should they arise. Most importantly, you’ll need to be aware of your legal obligations as an employer and ensure you are compliant across these at all times. If in doubt, maybe consider doing a business course from an educational provider such as Evocca College – these courses are often designed to skill you up in order to start your own business.
This is a crucial skill you will need to start your business, but more importantly, to make it thrive rather than just survive. If you’re borrowing capital to get your venture up and running, most lenders will require a business plan which provides market analysis, marketing strategies, legal compliance, risk management, operational tactics and revenue projections.
The idea of running a business is often glorified and glosses over the tedious jobs that need to be done on a daily basis. This includes things like book-keeping and constantly tracking your expenses versus income. Linked very closely to business planning, managing your finances is like looking after your heart – it’s essential to the life your business. The first year is typically the hardest in any new business and many start-ups do not turn a profit in their first financial year. Being prudent and knowing when to spend and how to reduce overheads, is absolutely fundamental to the success of your operation.
Starting your own business is a major life project. It looks and sounds great, but the reality can be very different. To make sure you give your business idea the best chance of becoming a successful reality, it pays to educate yourself on exactly what it takes to be your own boss.