2 answers
Asked Viewed 334 times Translate

whats the first step in owning your own business?


The first step is to write a thorough and detailed business plan. With a bullet proof business plan you can solicit financing or investor backing and have a document that clearly presents your business, it’s goals and your projected plan for success. Connect with a mentor through SCORE (https://www.score.org) to get free business advice and a review of your business plan. Good luck! Alwyn Velásquez

+25 Karma if successful
From: You
To: Friend
Subject: Career question for you
4
100% of 3 Pros
100% of 1 Students

2 answers


Updated Translate

Parthey’s Answer

Hi Luis,


It's great to see that you're interested in owning a business! I hope I can provide some advice based on my experiences with my family. My family has had a couple different experiences with owning businesses. First, my parents owned a general goods/grocery store for 3-4 years. After those years and a lot of incredibly hard work, they switched to working corporate jobs for a few years. Then they entered the hotel/motel business, where they have been for the last 7-8 years. Here is my advice from what I have seen:

  • Understand that owning a business means that a 9-5 job does not exist. If your goal is to have the freedom to be your own boss (which is definitely a great benefit) you must also understand that if any issues come up in your business, you are ultimately responsible. For example, if an employee does not show up for their Friday or Saturday night shift, you might have to run and take the shift for them, no matter what your plans are for the weekend.
  • Get used to potential swings in your income. You may not see a regular paycheck for the same amount every week or every two weeks as you would working for someone else or for a company. Your income will depend on the success of your business and how much work you put into it.
  • Flexibility is a huge plus-side. Sure, you may have to work during odd hours sometimes to meet the needs of the business, but you can also take a morning off for a doctor's appointment, leave early to finish errands, etc. This requires organization and planning in advance, but immense flexibility can be achieved if planned correctly.

Parthey recommends the following next steps:

Keep asking questions. In owning a business, you should always want to have an attitude of learning. The steps I've given here are only a place to start. The learning never ends when owning your own business. You must always strive to learn and keep up with the world, with the news, with the changing times, so that you can keep supporting your business. I hope this helps!
Saved!
Learn about how loans work. Many times, people have wonderful ideas or passions but are not able to fund their plans. Learn about what it takes to secure a business loan and what is needed to keep the business running using a bank's money.
Saved!
Find someone that is willing to let you shadow them. See what it feels like to live a day in the life of a business owner. Maybe offer to work as their assistant for some time to really experience the ups and downs of what it is like to own a business.
Saved!
Learn about what type of business you want to get into. Very often, if you are genuinely interested in the work that your business does, you will have a better time putting in extra hours to learn all about the industry and find success there.
Saved!

1
100% of 1 Pros
Updated Translate

Tom’s Answer

Hi Luis,

The first step is knowing that there is no right first step! Parthey has a great list of recommendations for next steps but I'll answer from a different perspective

I retired from my corporate role to start my own 'thing' which I thought would offer me a lot of flexibility in terms of setting my own schedule, spending more time with my family, and feeling more secure. All of those things "could" happen, but don't happen right away. You need to be patient, be willing to adapt daily to new challenges, and always take the customer point of view. To that note, here are a few things you can do to get started:

Tom recommends the following next steps:

Meet with a mentor, colleague, or someone else who has started a successful business. Ask A LOT of questions. The more you know up front, the better off you'll be
Saved!
Doing something you're passionate about. You can start a business selling anything, but it really makes the hard work you'll put in worthwhile.
Saved!
Do a lot of research. Get out and ask people about how they might interact with your product or service. Just because you're in love with something or would buy it, it doesn't mean everyone will. Keep personal tastes in check.
Saved!
Think about your financial risk. Do you want to put up your own money or borrow? Each has their pros and cons. Can you moonlight? Meaning, can you keep your full time job and then start your business on the side? This takes some of the risk out of the equation which will ultimately allow you to take the time in getting things right.
Saved!
Think 3 years ahead. What will the market look like in your opinion? Will there still be a need for your product? How easy would it be for a competitor to steal your idea? Think about your strategic competitive advantage. You don't always have to have a completely unique product/service, you just have to get people on board with why you're doing what you're doing.
Saved!

1
100% of 1 Pros