Top 10 Do’s and Don’ts Of Starting A Business

Starting a business takes a great deal of planning, researching and networking, as it’s important to thoroughly prepare before starting a business. Adapting to change is also extremely important but knowing what you don’t know before you go into it can be a big challenge.

Having started a business myself years ago, I understand the pains, frustration, uncertainty and excitement that goes into starting a new business. This is not to say that I didn’t do a great amount of research and networking to help with the ‘I don’t know what I don’t know‘ mindset.

3 years later and I’ve learned great many lessons, so to assist in the process, I have put together the following checklist of do’s and don’ts in hopes it helps my fellow business owners looking to fill in the blanks.

THE TOP TEN DO’S

  1. Save, Save, Save – Most entrepreneurs will live off their savings until their business is fully up and going. Determine what the goal amount should be and start saving!
  2. Be an apprentice & learn your business by working for someone who has a similar business & can teach you the basics.
  3. Evaluate how you wish to start – part-time or full-time.
  4. Identify the benefits of starting a family business.
  5. Understand the competitive landscape & determine how will you set your company apart.
  6. Understand roles & responsibilities to determine which can be outsourced.
  7. Create a focus group to get feedback on your products & services – truly listen to your customers. Feedback is crucial to staying relevant with your customers.
  8. Network with people in the industry – get to know your competition, vendors, pricing & trends to help stay competitive.
  9. Make a SWOT analysis of all opportunities you are considering – Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats
  10. Create a business plan, adjusting as you learn along the way.

THE TOP TEN DON’TS

  1. Don’t rush into starting a new business – be sure to do thorough research.
  2. Start your business without a legal business name, a website and social media to help build your brand.
  3. Don’t quit your job without first identifying a plan of action.
  4. Hire family and friends who have little to no experience in the industry or good work ethics. It never ends well!
  5. Open a business in a field you do not enjoy or don’t have experience in.
  6. Take unnecessary risks – have a plan and budget before starting.
  7. Select a business that is too high-risk, not recession proof or has too much of a niche market.
  8. Industry pricing is too low to be truly competitive or profitable – know your cost and expenses to help you learn how low in pricing you can go without losing a profit.
  9. Don’t go into business super-confident of success – always be ready to be flexible and revisit your business plan, industry trends and implement cost-effective measures when needed.
  10. Over-Promise, Under-deliver: Customer retention is imperative for any business, gain and keep the trust of your clientele.

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