How to Be in a Business State-of-Mind from the Start
Running a business is challenging, but for some would-be entrepreneurs, the hardest part is getting the business off the ground. Making the mental shift from having a business idea, to putting that idea into action is one that does not happen automatically. It is important to start growing your business from day one, if you still want to be in business beyond year one.
When Does Day One Really Start?
Day one is not the day your business finally opens its door to the public. Your business’s true day one starts long, long before that. In truth, day one is the day when you make the decision to be a business owner. Planning for future growth and success begins well before you push your company’s website live, or open the doors to your brand new store.
Important Day One Business Considerations
Now that you have decided to start your own business, you have to get serious and start thinking about what it is going to take to get your business off the ground. Now is the time to really dig deep, and to look at your business idea from top to bottom. Find out the following:
Is your idea financially viable?
Are businesses similar to yours making money?
Is your idea already taken?
If your idea is taken, can you find a unique approach to the idea so your business stands apart?
Are there any patents issued (or pending) on your idea?
Do you have any successful business models you can refer to?
Start Preparing Your Business Plan on Day One
Avoid progressing through the motions of starting your business if you have not yet come up with a business plan for it. The business plan is your roadmap to growing your business, so you do not want to start the journey without one. Writing a business plan takes time, and you want to make it professional and detailed. Do not try to get it completed in a day. Instead, take as long as you need to, in order to get it right.
Choosing a Business Entity
Is your business a one-man operation with minimal liability concerns? If so, then you might consider filing the business as a sole proprietorship. But if you are planning on having employees, then an LLC or corporation entity might be better suited for your business needs. Start researching your options and discuss them with a CPA or lawyer, so you can choose the best business entity for your idea.
Who Is Your Target Audience?
Your idea is strong enough that you have decided to start your own business, but who will benefit most from your product or service? What type of customer do you want to attract? Knowing who your target audience is will allow you to plan your business around their needs, and to maximize your potential for success.
Credit and Financing
Depending on your business model, you may need to apply for some outside funding in order to turn your idea into a business. Is your personal credit rating in good shape? Do you have friends or family who may want to invest in your business? How much of your own savings are you going to invest? How much do you actually need in order to start your company? Have you filed a DBA or LLC? Then you may consider establishing your business’s credit by securing a D&B D-U-N-S® number from Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp.
In business, new entrepreneurs often only get one chance to get it right. So start thinking about how you are going to grow your business from day one, and be better prepared on the first day your doors open.