Starting an own business is a common form of a career change for midlifers. You have reached a point in your life where you have the necessary expertise, reputation, network of contacts, and ideally, savings for the start-up capital.
When people decide on starting their own business, there are two choices: joining a franchise or building a business on an original idea. Both models have their advantages and disadvantages. If you are interested in joining a franchise network, make a research on the internet, look up franchise directories. In the case of setting up a business to profit from your business ideas, the most crucial part is to test your ideas. Is there a demand for your future products and services? Is the idea profitable?
Steps To Be Taken When Launching A Business
- Brainstorm For Business Ideas
Find out what you will offer to your customers. Is it a product? Is it a service? Think strategically! When you make plans for your products, think in the long run. Create products that are complimentary for each other or closely related. If a customer buys product A, they should be likely to buy product B, as well. That will secure you more revenue by a single customer.
- Market Research: Is Your Business Idea Profitable?
The next step is to find out if there is an actual demand for the product on the market. Research the competition, how easy is it to enter the market, what would be your unique selling point, why would customers choose your product instead of that of your rivals. Analyze price resistance. What is the maximum amount of money for which you could sell your product to your customers? In your research, use both primary and secondary sources.
- Write A Business Plan
A business plan is your road map to your success. It helps you to clear your goals in your head. In your business plan, you will state where you want to get and what the necessary steps are to be taken to get to your final destination.
- Get Business Assistance
Seek help for getting started. There are free counseling services and training that you can participate in to prepare for launching your own business. Mentoring is also a valuable form of providing information and advice to aspiring entrepreneurs.
- Determine The Legal Structure Of Your Business
In what form will you conduct your business activities? There are several legal forms to choose from, and each has its advantages and disadvantages. You need to select the one that best fits your long term plans and needs.
- Choose A Business Location
Choosing a location for your business may play a key role in your success. Thorough market research will give you answers about ideal locations in terms of the market. Still, you also have to take into account the local legal and financial commitments and opportunities when selecting the right location.
- Finance Your Business
There are many ways to raise money for a start-up company. Your savings, teaming up with friends and family members, looking for external investors, bank loans, government loans, angel investors. In your business plan, devote time to creating a detailed and sound financial plan. It will help to convince investors that your business idea is worth to be financed.
- Register A Business Name
A common way of naming a business is to use your surname for a company name. Other, more creative ways involve wordplays that reflect the activities and profile of your business. When you register a name, be sure to avoid using registered trademarks or copyrighted elements. And as we mention, copyrights, if necessary, patent your products and services with the patent office or get other legal protection for them.
- Get A Tax Identification Number
As a business entity, you will generate income that requires dealing with tax regulations. Depending on your country and state, it may vary what kind of taxes you are supposed to pay. The most common forms are federal, state, and local taxes. When you plan on starting a business, you need to register with your country’s national tax authority and local revenue agencies to receive a tax identification number or a permit.
- Obtain Business Licenses And Permits
To legally operate a business, it needs to be licensed. Depending on what your business will do, there might be several permits and licenses that you need to obtain. There are federal, state, and local level licenses and specific permits that may be necessary for carrying out a business activity. When you use a counseling service (step 4 in this article) to help you in starting your business, get information about what licenses and permits would be required for your specific business.
- Hire Your Staff
In case you aren’t a solo entrepreneur, you will need to hire employees. Having employees comes with legal responsibilities. You will need to pay taxes and insurance for each employee and manage other legal stuff. Work out compensation schemes, train your staff, and keep them motivated. Employees play a vital role in the success of a company. Therefore you should treat them with care.
- Manage Your Business
The everyday operation of a business requires good organization and time management skills. Work on your leadership skills, as well. The biggest change for people who leave a position as an employee and start their own business is to see themselves as an employer, as a leader. It requires different thinking. Constantly train yourself and evaluate your performance to learn from your mistakes and to become a better leader and a more successful entrepreneur.
Starting an own business is a dream come true for many people. It is the ideal form for professional independence and for doing what you want to do. Running a business holds a lot of opportunities, but the chance for failure, too. Eventually, it’s a learning process and a journey that is well worth being taken.