Sponsored by National Business Capital:
Starting a new business can be a frightening and exhilarating venture – especially for young entrepreneurs. And while you may be tempted to fall back on some of the things you learned in school, higher education can only take you so far.
That’s because a degree won’t turn anyone’s head in the “real world.” Rather, experience and applicable skills are more valuable than a collegiate pedigree. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to give your company a flying start to life as a business owner –– no matter what you studied in school!
Identify a Need
Passion does not equate to success. Just because you’re passionate about crafting three-headed troll-doll ornaments, doesn’t mean anyone wants to buy them. Sometimes turning your hobby into a business makes sense, and sometimes it doesn’t. That’s a harsh reality, but the sooner you come to grips with it, the better your business will function.
Resist the urge to throw money at a passion project that lacks viability. Remember, starting a company is about one thing at the end of the day: making money. If your product or service doesn’t solve a big problem, then you need to go back to the drawing board.
Hire Smart People
Well duh, right? This step is easier said than done. Of course, everyone goes into the hiring process looking to find smart, engaging people who they get along with. However, more often than not an undue amount of preference is given to how you vibe with a prospective employee or partner. Fight the temptation to go into business with someone simply because you like them (this goes double for friends and relations.)
More important than your compatibility is how you complement each other. If your business is going to succeed, you need people who can challenge your ideas and who can spark dynamic discussion. A sailboat doesn’t get anywhere in calm seas.
Finance, Finance, Finance
We can’t stress it enough –– your company needs funding if it’s ever going to get off the ground. Dreams aren’t built on hard work alone – they’re built on money and resources as well. So do everything you need to do to secure capital for your venture.
Whether that’s exploring options like small business loans, cash advances, a business line of credit, or more unorthodox methods like crowdfunding – make sure you’ve got the money to cover your projects. Without a steady cash flow, especially in the early days of your company, you’ll struggle to accomplish any important goals.