Set-up Your Standard Before You Start Your Company


Guest post by Jane Hurst, http://www.lifehack.org/author/jane-hurst & https://blog.getresponse.com/author/jane-hurst

 

You’re here because you want to start your own company. That’s an important first step. Too many people start this journey without having enough information on the subject and they ultimately fail. You should know from the start that starting your own company won’t be easy. You’ll face many obstacles on your way. However, if you’re determined and flexible, you’re already on the right path.

Having covered that, it’s time to move on to the actual steps that you should take on your journey.

 

Know Yourself

The ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu once said “He who knows others is wise; he who knows himself is enlightened”. That’s exactly what your first goal should be: knowing yourself. Many people start businesses for the wrong reasons. You shouldn’t be a part of that group. Place yourself on the spotlight and analyse a few things:

      What’s your motivation for starting a business?

      What skills do you have that can help you succeed?

      What is your main area of expertise?

      Are you willing to take a risk?

Answering these questions will paint a picture about who you are. You have no reason to lie in your answers, because you’re lying to yourself. Don’t think of this step as an obstacle that’s going to stop you from starting your own business. Instead, use the knowledge you gain from these answers and create a better plan. It’s never enough to be passionate about something. You also have to dedicate yourself to the cause.

Try to be as objective as you can when completing this first task. Look for the indirect answers as well. Discover your strengths and weaknesses based on what you’ve just learned about yourself. Often, people are held back because they’re unable to overcome their weaknesses. Even worse, some people don’t even acknowledge them.

The more information you’re able to gather about yourself from the start, the better prepared you’ll be for the obstacles that are yet to come. One thing that you need to understand is that once you get started, chances are that your new business venture will take up most of your time. This can take its toll on someone who’s not prepared.

 

Ask Yourself More Questions

More questions? Exactly. You should always strive to better yourself in every aspect of your life. Life becomes dull when you stop and that could be disastrous for both you and your new company. Here are some tougher questions that you can ask yourself:

      Is making a lot of money important to me?

      What if money wasn’t an issue?

      What matters to me the most?

      Am I prepared to make sacrifices?

      What can I learn from the people I admire?

By analysing your answers, not only will you learn more about yourself, you’ll also discover the areas which you can improve. For example, financial stability is something that everyone dreams of. Some are satisfied when they reach the floating line, while others feel the need to push forward. Knowing this about yourself will guide you on your path towards running a successful company. If there are entrepreneurs that you look up to, studying their habits and set of skills could transform into a major benefit for you. Improve and pick up new skills at every step of your journey.

 

Make Everything Legal

Without a doubt, this is a crucial step. Practically, registering your business is the very first step towards making your dream come true. There are different types of companies that you can register. Like with the previous steps, take your time and get to know all the pros and cons of the different company types. Don’t get lost in the details but don’t proceed without knowing what you’re getting yourself into.

Your best bet would be to work with a company formation agency. Companies like Rapid Formations specialize in registering new businesses. Their team of experts can help streamline the entire registration process, allowing you to focus on the more important issues. Instead of having to deal with legal paperwork, documentation, contracts, etc., you’ll have more time to focus on the scope and objectives of your business.

 

Plan As Much As You Can

Speaking of focusing on the scope and objectives: plan as much as you can. Benjamin Franklin, one of the founding fathers of the United States of America, once said that “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Many young entrepreneurs believe that they can ‘wing it’. Needless to say, they’re always wrong. Indeed, improvisation can be used successfully if the right opportunity occurs, but it’s better to be prepared for the worst instead of having to hope for the best.

A business plan is a formal document that states the goals of your business, your plans on achieving them, and the reasons why these goals are attainable. In most cases, these are valuable documents if you’re planning on external financing solutions. However, even if you will be funding the business out of your own pocket, preparing yourself for the future is the key to starting and running a successful company.

 

Open Your Shop

Here you are. The final step. You know yourself. Your company is legal. You have a business plan. It’s time to get to work on bringing in revenue. Just because it’s the last step doesn’t make it any easier. There are a lot of smaller things to take care of before your first satisfied customer.

First, you’ll need an office space. Depending on the niche you’re trying to access, this may or may not be such an important step. If you’re providing digital services, you may use your home as an office. Nevertheless, find an office location that is appropriate for your company. Once you have the location, set up the logistics: electronic devices should be up and running before you open the doors for the first time.

If you need staff members, now is the time to start hiring. Don’t go overboard. Hire only the people that are necessary. As your company grows, you’ll be able to bring in more people. Limit your spending as much as possible and be prepared for a tough start. In case something goes wrong, you’ll want to be covered on all sides, especially regarding your staff. Employing people that are of no use to your company is a bad move.

Lastly, set up your prices and start marketing. Aim to make a profit in the first months. You don’t need to overshoot, but don’t shoot yourself in the leg either. A 30% profit should be more than enough to get you going. Your first sales objective should be to attract as many customers as you can. Print flyers, create online events, etc. Don’t limit yourself to a single medium. Social media is the world’s most powerful marketing tool.

 


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