No one wants their business to fail and yet, many start a business without taking the time to give themselves the best chance for success.
It takes passion. As an entrepreneur you have to be passionate about what you are going to do, otherwise you are simply giving yourself another job. A new business takes dedication and lots of time so if you don’t have a passion for it, things will quickly become tedious and your efforts may be less than what is necessary to build a successful business.
Get things right the first time. Business registration, municipal business permits, HST, income taxes, payroll, WSIB, insurance, etc. Missing components or not understanding a regulation can mess things up and can actually take more time and cost you significant money down the road when you try to clean them up. Take the time to learn what your responsibilities are before you start the business, get everything set up properly before you begin and then operate accordingly.
Planning. A Business Plan can be an owners best friend, and should be updated on a yearly basis. It is important to plan out your marketing, employee training, new product introduction, etc. Without a plan you can fall behind on tasks, or miss out on important government reports that can cost you a great deal of money and time.
Don’t go it alone. Every business owner needs a support system, and not only at start-up. Family and friends offer support in many ways, even just being able to bounce an idea off of someone you trust is valuable. There are also programs available to small business owners that can provide Mentors who will offer their experience. Take advantage of these programs.
Look for customers before you begin the business. In the early stages it is often difficult to pay yourself as you are searching for customers. So try to attract them before you open. Get out and talk to people about your business, attend networking events, make contacts !
Do your research. You must know as much as possible about the industry you will be working in. You must know about the products of course, but you must also know everything possible about regulations, your competitors and what your clients expect. Research will always be important as your business develops. Change is inevitable. Just look at how Social Media has impacted the world of advertising. If you are not staying abreast of change you will fall behind and your business will suffer.
One person does not know everything. Surround yourself with professional people who will advise you or possibly take care of the things you don’t know. Many business owners have wasted valuable time performing tasks that they are not qualified to do, only to discover later that they could have hired someone to do it for them at less cost than what they could have earned during the same time, and with a great deal less stress.
Take the time in the beginning to set up your business legally and make sure everything is organized. It will go a long way to help you build your business with less stress and more opportunity to be successful!