How to Start a Business

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How to Start a Business

In the modern era, starting a business seems easier than ever. With online shopping markets taking an upper hand to traditional stores and telecommunication replacing office cubicles, setting up an enterprise can happen at little cost.

However, starting a business involves more than a bank account and online résumé. In this list, we will look closer into how to start a business, how businesses get going and, most importantly, how they become (and stay) successful.

Set the Foundation

lightbulb idea blackboard dream

Starting a business is a lot like building a house: you need a blueprint before getting your hands dirty. This is more than a metaphor: states don’t grant licenses to hopefuls without business plan, and businesses with a plan have higher rates of success.

But businesses and plans don’t have to start on paper. Brainstorming sessions, alone or with a group, are an awesome way to determine what customers need, what customers will pay for, and what will attract long-term buyers. In answering these questions, you establish the market and the services necessary for getting a successful business off the ground.

This set of ideas is your point of departure. Make a list of the best ideas that come from your brainstorming session, and use them to form a strategy for attracting a market at the lowest risk.

Think about the Finances

office pen calculator finance

It goes without saying that, when you start a business, finances take center stage. Especially in loan situations, maintaining a balanced budget determines from the get-go whether your business sinks or swims.

Money is only half the story once you bring other resources into the picture. Technology and logistics play a critical role in how smoothly a business runs, how it communicates with clients, and what kinds of employees it requires. A high-tech company, for example, may score in efficacy, but may also face high start-up costs and specialized employees that cost more to hire. Conversely, a start-up with more modest means may lose out to other, more-advanced competitors. In the end, it’s important to strike a balance between these two important features.

Establish a Structure

building business skyscraper

A legal structure, usually established as part of a business plan, also factors into a company’s potential to endure.

  • Sole proprietorships, for example, put owners at the highest risk because they place all responsibility on one individual: the businessperson. In this organization, the owner bears the brunt of all hardships.
  • A partnership is based on the same concept, except that, as its name entails, it gives equal weight to more than one owner. These highly-volatile models don’t lend themselves to starting a business.
  • Rather, new businesses often file as a corporation or limited-liability corporation (LLC), both of which distinguish the business from the owner.  

The final step in setting a business’ framework involves registering with the government and obtaining an employer identification number (EIN). This number identifies you as an employer, and as someone who will pay taxes as such. 

Growing the Team

people window business work

Even if your business starts as a partnership, you can always hire others and grow your team. Getting employees is one thing, though, and keeping them is another. To retain a stable workforce, employers tend to adopt a philosophy of growth-mindedness.

They work with others to build them up, and to advance the company with an adequate crew. The same idea works on the other end, too: employees should capture the “feel” of a business, and be able to show others what it’s all about.

Getting Out There

people talking discussion table coffee

Indeed, after starting a business, the next big step is getting it “out there.” Although advertising may seem daunting, it’s not always flashy images or massive billboards.

Simple networking, getting to know other big names in your sector, and making connections both online and in-person can be just as effective as a professional marketing campaign. It all boils down to showing what you do to who you know, and asking them to talk about it, too.

Starting a business can prove a fulfilling experience, as well as a stunning display of hard work and perseverance. However, this honor comes in part from having jumped all the hurdles of getting a business up and running. Many potential business leaders allow start-up costs, legal factors, and marketing strategies to deter them, but this does not have to be the case.

If you accept the long and sometimes difficult steps necessary to starting a business of your own, you too can taste the sweet reward of success.

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