Before Starting Your First Business, Do These Things

Life often begins under less than ideal circumstances, leading to less than idea decision-making, resulting in less than ideal outcomes. If you find that you are living in one of those less than ideal outcomes, you are not alone. And it is not necessarily your fault despite everyone telling you that it is.

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Ultimately, however, it doesn’t matter whose fault it is. Your life is yours to work out. That means finding a way to successfully navigate the obstacle course in front of you no matter how unfair it happens to be.

One of the ways people are finding to help them navigate their particular situation is to start their own business and become their own boss. While a noble path, it often does not pan out. While a lot has changed in the past decade, the reasons new businesses fail are not among the things that have changed.

Being online has not magically fixed the problems of not finding your niche, failure to communicate a value proposition, and refusal to listen to and act upon customer input. The age-old mistakes are still the mistakes being made today, just by a new generation.

Among the biggest of those mistakes is failure to do the necessary prep before starting the business in the first place. So before you launch your new adventure, be sure to cover the following bases:

Complete Your Education

After you start your new business, you will be working 16 hours a day. You are not going to have time to go back to school to advance your education. Take the time to do it now. Perhaps you are only a few math credits short of a degree. Take advantage of online study tools and take the class in Properties of Analytic Functions that has been holding you back.

There are lots of benefits to completing your degree. It provides you with added credibility which is very important for attracting clients. When you were working for a company, customers trusted the company, not you. The company was providing the credibility. When you go to work for yourself, you have to provide the credibility. Clients have to be able to trust that you know what you’re doing. A degree hanging on the wall provides quiet credibility and confirmation to the client who has to decide whether or not to trust you with their money and their future. Complete your education first and good things usually follow.

Get Your Personal Finances in Order

The very reason you need to start a business is usually to help get your personal finances in order. But for your business to have the best chance at success, you need to get your finances in order first. If you don’t, the negative implications of your personal finances will adversely affect your business.

Start by opening a checking account. You are about to enter the business world, you are going to have to get over your fear and distrust of banks. This is not 1922. You are about to do a modern thing. And you are going to have to enter the modern world of finance. Parking your money under the mattress is not a viable option. You also need to do as much credit repair as you can.

There are many ways to improve your credit score that stop short of paying off all your debts. People who fail to make a go of their business are often people who failed to tame their personal finances first.

Figure out Your Marketing

Unless your business will consist only of your friends and family, you need to know how you are going to get the word out about your project before you begin. It is naive to believe that if you build it, they will come. While not completely accurate, a better saying would be, “If you build it and tell people about it all the time, they will come.” Waiting until after you start your venture to devise a marketing plan means that a lot of your efforts will go unnoticed by anyone. Capitalize on your efforts from day one by putting together a marketing plan first.

Yours doesn’t have to be one of the new businesses that fail provided you do a few things first such as completing your education, getting your personal finances in order, and figuring out your marketing strategy.

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