There is a little more structure to being an entrepreneur as well, and it’s not all ‘flying loose and free… ‘ The name of the game is having a goal, seeing the big picture, developing a plan, learning and re-assessing constantly, being adaptable, and following through.
This article offers up a few tips and some practical help to guide you on the start of your enterprise.
1. If you’ve got a job, don’t quit straight away!
This is something which I did myself, and it really was the best thing to get me started. It allowed for me to start up allocating the time and finances I could afford to invest in the new venture, while maintaining a level of stability. It bought me the time to be able to make a few mistakes, learn the ropes, and become confident enough with the direction that things were moving in, to be comfortable with giving up the day job without going into a state of panic.
It can generally take around six months to a
Do you want to be an Entrepreneur or a Small Business Owner? Is there a difference, and does it matter?
There is a difference, and it’s easy to confuse the two or use the two terms interchangeably. A Small Business Owner owns their own business, but also actively participates in that business. Often the Small Business Owner is critical to the ongoing success of the company. Without him or her, the business either does not exist (i.e. medical, legal, accounting, consulting, freelancing) or would suffer greatly in the owner’s absence for any period of time.
We often use the term “Solopreneur” to refer to the individual practitioner who is their own boss but must personally deliver a service or create a product for their business to generate revenue. While this may certainly be better than working for someone else, it’s still about trading time for money – and time is our most limited resource.
Whether you are a Solopreneur or a Small Business Owner, you likely own a business that depends
In business it’s easy to become demotivated by making your business too complex. To succeed it’s important you find a way to keep the overview, get back to basics and understand exactly what the important elements are in your business that you want to be focusing on.
Get Access To Outside Information
You’ve got to keep yourself motivated by listening to outside information. This is a must. It helps you to broaden your perspective and puts what you are doing into a wider context.
If it’s about building your business, learn from those who are successful, and who have built successful businesses. Decide what success means for you, and focus on that whilst taking on board what others say. Investing a small amount of money in order to get the information needed that’s going to widen your view will pay you in the long run.
Want To Do Something Different
You also need to want to do something different from what you’re currently doing. If you are in business, and you want to expand your income by doing the same as what you’re currently doing, chances are that income is going to stay
“What is the difference between a living thing and a dead thing? In the medical world a clinical definition of death is a body that doesn’t change. If you don’t change, you die. It’s that simple. It’s that scary.” Leonard Sweet
I can only imagine what it would be like to be stuck as an entity that cannot progress in my desired activity of choice. How delusional and miserable it would be to try so hard just to remain in the same position year after year. Truthfully many persons struggle with the realization that their life has become nothing more than a revolving door with no way out. This is not the way life is supposed to be. Now I ask again, Entrepreneurship or workforce?, YOU CHOOSE! I want to take a split second to identify two keywords before we get started. The first word is Entrepreneurship which can mean a person who organizes and manages any enterprise, especially a business, usually with considerable initiative and risk. Second I will define the word job. A “Job” is a PIECE of work, especially a specific task done as part of the routine of one’s occupation or for an
I always dreamed about having my own business, talked to friends about it, and imagined how it might be. But it was only after two women gave me a push, that I started doing instead of dreaming. First, my former boss said to me, when we were both thinking about moving on, “I never looked for a job, I always went out and created my own.” Given her advice, I hired a business coach to help me map out my next career steps. My coach saw my entrepreneurial spirit and encouraged me to start a business. So I moved from dreaming to doing.
The first few months of my business I spent setting up a legal structure, registering the business name, implementing an easy accounting system, setting up a business checking account, establishing a line of credit and obtaining business insurance. Each item was time consuming but not difficult. The more difficult work was writing my business plan and marketing plan. I talked to professional colleagues and volunteers at the Small Business Administration and SCORE, and read books on marketing. The process was slow because I was learning along the way, but I now use both business
Why is it that you’re always hearing stories about people from all walks of life, professions and ages who have achieved online business success? Hardly a day goes by when you don’t see some article, post or advertisement on the internet about somebody who went from a complete online newbie to earning a new income on the internet. So, if you’re wondering if you should start an online business, here are a few questions you need to ask yourself first.
Do You Want A Side Business With Little Start Up Cost?
One of the key advantages of starting an online business is the low set up cost. You may want to have it as a side business to supplement your income. An online business has no real estate, inventory or employees expenses. All you need is a computer and access to the internet.
Do You Want To Reach A Large Customer Base?
There are over 3 billion people who have access to the internet so just about the entire planet can provide potential sales. A traditional ‘bricks and mortar’ business can only grow as large as its surrounding areas. If that business is focused
When my clients ask me “what is the biggest obstacle founders face?”, I always give them one-word answer “overconfidence”. In my experience, un-grounded intuition and overconfident beliefs have often been the root of poor decision making. Thus, it is important to differentiate overconfidence from a healthy dose of self-confidence, after all it is the primary driver behind a person’s decision to dive into the murky waters of entrepreneurship.
Let me turn your attention to a past but important fact:
In 2006, nearly 650,000 new businesses with employees opened their doors in the United States, while nearly 565,000 firms closed, according to the U. S. Small Business Administration. More than 99 percent of the nearly 27 million businesses in the U.S. in 2006 were small firms with fewer than 500 employees.
The capacity of our mind is bounded. We tend to focus on very narrow slices of information and ignore massive amounts. We imagine that reality is simple, that we can reasonably forecast the future, and we become overconfident as result. In short, we fail to appreciate how much we do not know — how much uncertainty we should have. Further, we tend look for evidence
American business ideas and the people whom came up with them are by far some of the most innovative and forward thinking people in the world. Americans are now and have always been, in general, very creative people but it seems that American business people have found ways to turn the needs of the masses into successful business models. Even as early as the Revolutionary War when a group of sea baring men called Privateers were in business to help support the meager naval fleet against the enemies, for a fee of course.
The earliest great American business ideas were land companies. They would cordon off a section of land and sell the parcels for a tidy profit. People were so hungry to own land they would literally race for the parcel that most suited them. As the country grew so did the formation of companies that could provide products for the American population. There were the “big” industries like transportation, public works, communication, publishing, and utilities as well as more specialized businesses like pencil making, clock making, and candle making, etc. Personal services were some other great ideas for businesses; dressmaking, hairdressing, and
There sure is a lot of talk lately about business regulation that is needed in financial markets, but one also needs to remember that much of the problems we see today are actually the cause and effect of previous regulations. Over regulation by government is almost always a bad idea, throw in a little politics and anything can happen.
Regulation in business is a tricky subject those who do not understand often call for huge amounts of regulation and so does the consumer, unfortunately, adding more regulations generally births the law of unintended consequences down the road, worsening a situation somewhere else. But, do not take it from me, rather I’d like to recommend a very good book for your read:
“The Future of Business Regulation; Private Action and Public Demand” by Murray L. Weidenbaum; (American Management Association Edition). Amacom, New York, NY; 1979
The book warns of the problems of government encroachment on the business sector, today we see he was absolutely right on the money. He cites the many growing government interventions in the 1970s and impacts in that era. We see now that things have gotten worse, much worse, American Business is
Despite all the rhetoric these days about tax and budget cuts, the reality is that we will only see real improvement in employment prospects for our nation’s workers if we start seeing strong economic growth. What’s needed is the kind of strong, sustained economic growth that provides American businesses assurance that as they hire more workers there will be sufficient economic demand for the goods and services those workers help deliver.
Tax cuts can help shore up demand for goods and services in the short run, but you can’t cut taxes enough to spur economic activity and job growth long term. And tax cuts without reductions in spending add to the federal deficit. Eventually, the kinds of massive deficits our government has been running become a major problem.
Meanwhile, reductions in government spending in the short run translate into reduced demand for goods and services. The kinds of drastic spending cuts currently being discussed by many conservatives under the guise of “limited government” could seriously undermine, or at a minimum delay, economic recovery. The only way forward for growing our economy requires the Federal Reserve to keep the money supply growing, and keep the cost of
The history of modern American economy traces its roots in the 16th century when migrants from Europe came to settle in the country. At that time, the nation was inhabited by Native Americans — indigenous peoples who were recognized according to tribes. Prior to the arrival of European settlers, tribes traded among themselves.
When the Europeans came they established economic interaction with the natives through the barter or trading of commodities. Such interaction increased tremendously over time – thus becoming the cornerstones of commerce and the foundation of a nation. From the early trading systems, business in America progressed to more complicated and more comprehensive levels. Tracing these roots, from the early barter practices through the Industrial Revolution up until the Internet Revolution can help us better appreciate why America is the most powerful economy in the world today.
The beginnings of business in America are closely intertwined with the early practice of barter. In its early history, the United States was a collection of colonies where the absence of a common currency led to the use of all sorts of substitutes, e.g. tobacco and wampum, as money.
Before we even begin to discuss some of the general business practices in the United States, there are two key points in American culture that we need to understand. Individualism and egalitarianism are two important elements in American culture that have significant effects on their business etiquettes.
According to the research and studies of Geert Hofstede, a Professor of International Management at the University of Limburg at Maastricht, the Netherlands and a notable expert on business culture having done comprehensive studies on values in the workplace, the United States has a high level of individualism in its society.
This is the reason behind Americans show more self-reliant behaviors and, aside from themselves and close family members, tend to form loose bonds with other people. American culture emphasizes and practically awards those who take the initiative and those whose goals are towards personal achievements. Status and age doesn’t matter much and what is looked at are one’s personal achievements.
Meanwhile, egalitarianism or the concept of equality is important as well. Americans believe that they should be provided with equal rights, equal social obligations, and equal opportunities. Equality, however, is still based on individual achievements. Americans feel
American love our “stuff.” Big honkin’ TVs the size of a wall, ear splitting sound systems that rival any concert hall, nice cars, big houses. The more stuff and the nicer it is the better we like it. The good part is that is exactly the way American business likes us to be. The more stuff we buy, the more money circulates.
The only problem is that we can’t afford the stuff anymore.
Until recently, Americans actually had a negative savings rate. That’s right. No money in the bank for emergencies. No money to buy our kids the textbooks they need for their first year of college. We spent more than we took in and thought it was a wonderful thing. The economy kept chugging along based on the seemingly insatiable appetite of the American Consumer to want and buy more and more and more stuff!
Then the party ended. Partly from the bursting of the housing bubble and partly from the crash of the financial services industry and partly because no one can stay drunk forever (you gotta pass out sometime!). It finally dawned on people that they couldn’t pay for the stuff they
Innovation In Business is all about not doing the same thing over and over… it sounds self-explanatory, right? But then why are organisations getting it so wrong, over and over?!
We’re Already In ‘The Future’
Business today isn’t simply changing- it has already changed. We’re already deep into an era of phenomenal and unpredictable commercial growth and evolution: segments are progressing, markets are fragmenting, demographics are blurring, consumers are vastly complicated, unique and extremely well informed, people are incredibly well connected, social media is soaring and all industries are shifting at exponential rates.
In not-so-rare-anymore examples, the change in an industry is so incredible that it almost never could’ve been imagined only a short year or so before. Take the whole Freemium model as an example, where products are no longer simply ‘paid for and owned’ anymore, but acquired for free and then compensated for with more creative, alternative ways. There are innovative organisation models in effect today, such as crowd sourcing content, skillshare, conscious consumerism amongst countless others, which are surviving successfully despite experts claiming that failure was inevitable.
As a result of this phenomenal era, big organisations accustomed to “same-same smooth-sailing” are
Consumers have so many choices when it comes to choosing the right business for their needs. The first decision they must make is whether to go with a small or big business. Small businesses are able to focus on their mission and keep their fingers on the pulse of their customers. They are also able to offer more personal attention to their clients. But we have seen a dramatic decline in the number of small privately owned businesses these past few years.
For smaller businesses today, an important point to consider is whether they should develop an online store or website. Many experts agree that an online presence is essential for most businesses, and that there are several reasons why consumers should select a small business over a big one.
While many small companies see big companies as the enemy, their real competition is other small companies like themselves. Most big businesses already have a recognizable brand name. They also have a pretty loyal fan base. They are not worried about small operations knocking them down in sales. But other small shops must continue to fight their business counterparts to get an edge in today’s market.
Too many small businesses operate without budgets. And many small businesses that do have budgets aren’t getting as much out of them as they could. We’ve seen it time and again.
It isn’t because the mechanics are difficult to manage. Everyone knows the basics of how budgets work: you track money coming in, you track money going out, and you do your best to plan for the future. In fact, the very simplicity of that formula is what leads some small-business owners to consider budgets not worth the trouble.
Therefore, what we’ll discuss here isn’t what budgeting entails, because if you don’t already know that, you can find it out with ease. We’re more interested in why you should budget in the first place. Our suggestion, to put it plainly, is that budgeting is a way to amplify the very creativity and adaptability that allow small businesses to thrive.
You don’t become an entrepreneur because you have a burning love of spreadsheets. At least, not usually. Being an entrepreneur isn’t supposed to be about budgeting. It isn’t supposed to be about paging through endless columns of variable costs or putting caps on
Running a small, start-up business has it share of ups and downs. When I launched my company nearly nine years ago, running my own small business has been both rewarding and challenging. It has enabled me to establish greater balance in my life as I have reduced the administrative burden that corporate America places on each of its employees and replaced it with more time spent on developing content for my clients.
Given the choice, running my own small business is the best option for me at this stage of my life. I can work out of my house, see my kid on a regular basis, focus my work effort on content, rather than administration, and yes golf a . That being said, I am asked continually by others “what is it like to be in business for yourself?” as they contemplate the leap from corporate to sole proprietorship.
While it is not for everyone, here are some of the points of consideration that one should mull over before making the jump to starting your own small business:
One of the benefits of being a small business owner is the autonomy of “calling the shots”.