Ready to kick that unfulfilling job to the curb and become your own boss? Excellent! But before you quit your steady job and pop the Champagne, take a look at this quick guide to help get you started with your own business.
Do Research to Be Your Own Boss
So you’ve decided to become a business owner! Your first step is to do your due diligence to make sure you’re not taking on too much risk. Research your potential market and customers and ask yourself these key questions:
- Is there a need/want for my product/service in the marketplace?
- Will my product/service provide convenience?
- Who is my target audience?
- How will I reach my potential customers?
- Are there similar options already available for consumers?
- Why would my product/service stand out?
- How much can I charge for my product or service and how much will it cost me to provide it?
Small Business Field Testing
Now it’s time to test the waters! Find someone who works in the field you’re interested in entering, and offer to work for them a few hours a week to get your feet wet and learn. After all, imitation is the highest form of flattery!
Then ask family and friends for help testing your offerings. Gift them your product/service to test and ask for feedback. Use free social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter to show off ideas or prototypes and gauge the level of consumer interest.
You can also sign up and take part in local markets and festivals for a personal approach to marketing and to hear feedback from your potential customers.
Get Your Workspace Organized
Where there is chaos, there is always confusion. Keeping your workspace organized, clean, and distraction-free will help create a productive environment. Start scouting a designated workspace that fits your budget: a monthly co-working space, office unit, library, or a home office. And be sure to incorporate a few software apps to streamline and help run your business. Using tools for payment and invoicing like Square and cloud storage in Dropbox can cut down on wasted time and help you keep orders, fulfillment, and payments organized. After all, wasted time equals wasted money.
And be sure to incorporate a few software apps to streamline and help run your business. Using tools for payments and invoicing like Square and cloud document storage in Dropbox can cut down on wasted time and help you keep orders, fulfillment, and payments organized. After all, wasted time equals wasted money.
Understand The Risk of Starting a Business
Now is a good time to talk about the risks and sacrifices you’ll face as a new business owner. All responsibilities are on you! You are the CEO, supervisor, employee, accountant, and marketing manager. And you may be doing this all on little to no sleep. Welcome to entrepreneurship!
For many, the reward of owning your own business can outweigh the risk. But it’s important to have a plan on when you expect to see a return on your investment and when you can be profitable. You’ll want to take calculated risks aimed at the highest reward.
Reach out to your local entrepreneurial community for support and to ask how successful small business owners make decisions. Find your business-owners tribe on social media, free online forums, meetups, and local co-working spaces to connect and seek perspective. Surrounding yourself with driven like-minded individuals will give you proven strategies as well as strength in times of need.
Protect Your Business Idea
It’s important to start your business off on the right foot by taking care of essential legal paperwork. You’ll want to protect your great idea and your future profits! Check out these 10 Steps to start your business to get you going.
For a DIY approach, go to your local state’s website and head to your county clerk’s office. Tight on time and have a little extra cash? You can pay a local certified public accountant (CPA) or an online platform like LegalZoom and MyCorporation to set up your business.
Start Small and Keep Going
Use any and all available time to do something in your business every day. Start by making a daily “to-do” list; perhaps it can include some of the steps suggested above!
Next, considering changing your existing social media profile to reflect your new business. You’ve already built relationships and trust with your followers — capitalize on the free exposure! Pro Tip: Give speedy responses, focus on customer service, and be sure to thank your consumers.
Grow Your Small Business
Once your business is up and running, try to stick with your full-time job as well until you’ve saved six months of living expenses in the bank. Wait until you’re sure that you can securely replace your job income with business profits before you quit your day job.
As your business grows, continue to educate and research your craft. You must keep up with the ever-changing trends in your market or you’ll be eating the competition’s dust. Now that you have the time to reinvest into your business, get ready to scale and level up!
Being your own boss has its pros and cons, but having the freedom to live life on your terms is worth it! Don’t limit yourself! Have a side hustle like direct selling and affiliate marketing? Brainstorm how you can transform it into a thriving business. Be creative — the sky’s the limit!