Top Tips for Starting a Small Business as a College Student

Some of the top global brands like Google, Facebook, and Microsoft were started by students while still in college. Many other students are following the same footsteps, setting the foundation for very profitable businesses while they still pursue their academic goals. The big question is, how do they manage their time when pursuing both?

Student entrepreneur

photo credit: Christina Morillo / Pexels

Some of these young founders hire fellow students.  Some of them chose to outsource things – not only business operations, but also academic projects and tasks. There are professional services  that answer the question “Who will write my coursework, so that I can create more time to set up my businesses without interfering with college grades.”

The things is, regardless of all the help you can get as mentioned above, as easy and practicable as it may appear, starting a business while in college is not easy. It may take a toll on your health since you are forced to sit through the business plans for long hours. You may also miss classes and exams in your attempt to meet clients or deliver supplies. Eventually, you will lose the opportunity to learn.

To avoid all the issues above,  here are excellent tips on how to start a small business while in college.

Pick the right idea

While you are at liberty to start any business, some ideas might not work simply because you are in college. The idea may be too demanding yet you still need to complete your class work. In other cases, the idea may require a lot of resources. Some ideas have died because the student did not possess the right skills for the job.

The best idea is one that you can execute without losing focus on your academic work. Avoid a business that requires you to serve people full-time during the day unless you can afford to hire employees.

Online businesses are the most plausible for college students. You can serve your customers remotely and schedule interactions to take place away from your class hours. In case you need to establish a physical store, the idea should allow flexible working hours so that you can still attend lectures.

Organize your time

Academic work in college requires you to dedicate time. Unfortunately, time is still limited. You must organize your time in such a way that you attend to your academic responsibilities and at the same time meet the requirements of your business.

Isolate the mandatory class hours. Do not miss class to focus on a business whose future is unknown. Attend classes and complete your homework on time.

Squeeze the time you use to rest or attend social events to accommodate business development. It means resting fewer hours or avoiding unnecessary social events. Such are the sacrifices that you have to make for your business to succeed.

Sacrifice for your business

What do you have to drop or sacrifice for the sake of your business? Is it social time or personal time? Will you avoid or minimize expenses on entertainment to grow your business? You could also spend less time with friends so that you can serve more customers.

A business requires a lot of sacrifice at the initial stages. It explains why some of the famous founders had to quit college to focus on developing their ideas. Prepare for long working hours, fully-packed weekends, and early mornings working on the business instead of sleeping or reading.

College student busy preparing for an exam

Take advantage of your student status

Your status as a student comes with valuable goodwill. A lot of partners and venture capitalists are looking for brilliant business ideas to fund. Your business will also be exempted from taxes or duties because of age and your student status. Take advantage of such goodwill to grow your business.

The school also has an alumni network that you can tap into for help with your business. Career fares and incubation centers in colleges also offer resources you can use to improve the chances of your business doing well with limited resources. Such opportunities will be nonexistent once you leave college.

Build the right networks and partnerships

It takes a variety of skills and resources to set up a thriving business. You cannot master all these skills on your own. The resources you need might also be beyond your reach just because you are in college. The best option is to build a strong partnership and network that can support the growth of your business without draining your resources.

Tap into the resources of your college peers. Some may be good graphic or web designers to support at the initial stages at a reduced fee. Consider selling a state at an appropriate time to generate the capital you need for your business.

Do not ignore your academic work

You remain a student only to the point where your grades are decent. In case they fall below the allowed standard, you will lose your chance in college. Do not neglect your academic work as long as you still desire to remain a student. Such goodwill improves the chances of success for your business.

A small business in college will get you the money you need to improve your college experience. It is also the beginning of a project that might turn out to be a global brand. While you are still in college, pay attention to your grades so that they remain impressive to warrant you continued status as a student.


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