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What is the hardest part of creating your own business?

I'm a high school student, I have taken multiple business classes that include the marketing and entrepreneurship aspect of the business. #business #entrepreneur

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Maathangi’s Answer

There are many aspects to running a successful business.

It depends on the kind of product that you want to sell -- is it a tech solution? a commodity product? a service? How are you going to build it / organize the supply of it? Do you need to set up inventory?
It also depends on who your customers might be - who's the user persona you're trying to sell to, what / where is your target market?
There's also the sales & marketing piece - this is super critical in taking it to your users.

For the tech space (that's where my experience is), there are a few critical aspects -- the CEO (who typically guides / leads the product direction & finance), Operations (who handles all aspects of running the business, logistics, etc), Technology (who is involved in actually building out the product), Sales & Marketing.

Make sure that you've thought through all the different aspects -- be very agile & lean, iterate fast (especially if you're trying out a new idea and looking to get to product - market fit), get the right people on board, and finally, be honest with yourself about your strengths and weaknesses, seem mentorship if you're not sure / feel stuck, be persistent & learn fast! Lastly, be happy about the whole process!

I'd say, for me -- looking back, the single hardest thing about an entrepreneur was to look through all aspects, especially the ones that were not my areas of strength & not reaching out for advice and mentorship when I wasn't sure! There are tons of people out there who are willing to help, if only we seek to ask :)

Maathangi recommends the following next steps:

Chart out a solid business plan & get feedback from trusted advisors
Identify your key areas of strengths & weaknesses
Who are you bringing on board for your team?
Develop a plan for financing
Set up your support team -- family, mentors, friends, etc.

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Kate’s Answer

The answer really depends on a lot of things-- what is your service or product? who are your target customers? what are the legal requirements for starting a business in your locale? will you need start up capital? will you need a physical location (storefront) or will you be online only?... Those and many other factors can be difficult or easy. For me, the hardest part was always the sales and marketing piece. How was I going to get people to find out about my service if I wasn't comfortable with self-promotion and didn't have the time or talent for a lot of marketing methods (social media, blogs/vlogs, etc.)? So, I would suggest understanding your own weakness first. Maybe you're great at self-promotion and a wizard with online marketing techniques, but not so great with organization and managing all of the documentation, timely response to customers, managing finances, etc.? Figure out what is the element that you will enjoy least/dread/procrastinate/stress over and enlist help from mentors, friends, family, or someone who is skilled in that element. Ask them for advice, help, guidance, etc. and, ultimately, pay for expert help in the areas where you are weak so you have more time and energy for the business activities that you feel passionate about and enjoy.

Kate recommends the following next steps:

outline al of the basics (who, what, when,where, why, how) of your potential business
identify your strengths and how they connect to the basics
identify your weaknesses as they relate to the basics of your business and think about ways to mitigate
research others in the same business (your competitors), what works/doesn't work for them, how will you be different/better?

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Clint’s Answer

The hardest part of creating your own business is having employees. There are many things to think about if you have people working for you. Such as attendance policies, insurance, taxes, state and local requirements. At one time I had 5 contractor employees (they paid their own taxes)who worked for me. The state changed the law and I was not aware of the change. I found this out the hard way when the IRS approached me asking for back taxes on these employees. Luckily I was able to work through a resolution with the IRS and my employees.

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Dr. Ronald’s Answer

Hi Cody,
Critical decision-making. Thus, transitioning your ideas to decisively act with purpose.
Dr. Ronald