Getting your first message out, as in this first blog article is a bit like sending a message out into a vast ocean, not knowing who’s beach it’s going to up land on. So, we’ll cast our bottle into the water and here goes!
Starting a business can be daunting. I know first-hand! It isn’t for the faint-hearted, it’s hard work! Fortunately, hard work is something that I’ve never shied away from. From the words of an old proverb “From little acorns, mighty oaks grow.” Anything worth any substance takes effort, maintenance but is also extremely rewarding when you stand back and look and reflect on what you’ve accomplished.
What motivates us to start and what keeps us going? Sometimes it can be a dissatisfaction with your circumstances, or the need to create something for yourself and a belief in what you have to offer will make a difference in people’s lives.
The reasons for starting this business, has probably been a mixture of all three and probably more. I have learnt a great deal from co-managing previous businesses, working within large and small businesses, through academic studies and also time spent living overseas.
Like the acorn, this business is intentionally small, enabling us to grow at a measured and sustainable pace. It also enables us to be agile in what we provide and how we provide it. From current beginnings, I have already learnt a great deal and would like to share some insights with you.
So, here are my 6 top POINTS to remember when starting a business:
1. Prepare, prepare, prepare.
The old brownie motto is ‘Be prepared’, and I found this to be a formula for success in everything I do. Probably the hardest part in starting a business is deciding on the specific business idea you want to run with and knowing what you need to be preparing for. You may have a few different ideas, but whatever idea you commit to, you’ll need to have your finances in order, your loans paid off, so the best place to start is to prepare financially and get yourself in the best possible position you can while you’re working out the details.
2. Observe how others do it.
Ask questions, get involved in groups, read widely. Get alongside people, whom you respect, look up to and have the skills and traits that you would like to emulate. Hopefully and most probably, your relationships with them will add value to what they do too. If you’re in a small community or in a situation where it is harder to meet these types of people, search on Ted talks, get some books out of the library, watch videos of people on YouTube whom you admire and respect and get inspired.
3. Impart and communicate your vision.
Communicate your vision to the important people in your life. Those that want to see you succeed. Their support is important for your journey, particularly as it will probably involve some sacrifices whether it’s time spent with them or in other areas. Also, that they understand why you wanting to take the step.
4. Note and write down a plan.
Make a list of the skills that you will need additional training on, perhaps on a spreadsheet and a column for measuring your progress. Then set about researching online how you will acquire those skills. Using Google search to find the topics you will find so many free tools, YouTube videos, websites you name it. You will be surprised how many resources and free training you can find online.
5. Think carefully about your why.
What are the reasons behind you wanting to start your venture? It’s your why that keeps you going it’s the reasons why that you ask yourself what you’re doing it all for, when things are getting tough and you’re up against the wall. Your why, keeps you focussed and steels your determination to succeed like nothing else.
6. Stay at it.
A little bit each day, though on some days may not seem significant but it is always ahead of the day you were before. It’s the habit and the mindset of doing a little each day, it’s that consistency and remaining committed to progress that will enable you to reach your goals. When you’re climbing a mountain you always start with one step at the bottom.
Lastly, to conclude and this isn’t necessarily a point, but it is to just have fun and enjoy the process. The start of a business is an exciting process, where you learn and discover new things every day and meet new and interesting people. Enjoy the growth experience and make the most of each milestone.