Settle for a business idea that addresses specific pains for millions of customers that your competitors haven’t fully solved. Get a mentor, build a team,
The internet is awash with stories of successful and failed startups in equal measure. An excellent business idea does not guarantee it will succeed; entrepreneurs need to examine the target market, plan, and mobilize resources to achieve their desired objective. These are no easy tasks; everyone would be a prosperous business person if they were.
Many blogs, videos, and articles on the internet do not provide entrepreneurs with ideal tips to help them effectively plan before launching a startup. Read through our guide to unearth 7 tips to help you with proper planning before venturing into entrepreneurship.
Tip 1. Find a business idea that addresses a problem many people care about
Many entrepreneurs lack creativity, choosing to copy what other successful businesses do. Venturing into a saturated market is a recipe for failure since your target customers may not need your products or services since these needs have been addressed.
You want to go for ideas you are passionate about that will improve your prospective customers’ lives. This way, your customers will be willing to pay for what you offer.
Furthermore, you want to choose a product or service demanded by many people over a large geographical area, allowing you to scale your operation in the future. If you choose a promising business idea that serves a limited population, you will have a reduced market size. You will be unlikely to attract investors or talents to your business with small market size.
Since you will spend several years building your business before it is fully established, choose a business idea you are passionate about. If your selection is propelled purely by the prospects of quick returns, the chances are you will likely fail. You need to invest your heart and soul in the startup to see it succeed.
Tip 2. Build an enthusiastic team
Did you know that a wrong has a 23% contribution towards business failure? Before you start building a business, you want to think about an ideal team. Who can you include?
Ensure your team feels your business idea the way you do. If your team lacks enthusiasm or does not believe you will make it past the competition, your business may not make it past the initial stages.
The team should handle responsibilities you lack skills and experience on. For instance, if you lack financial and accounting knowledge, you can hire a commercial advisor or a qualified accountant to handle your finances. You can also hire a freelance lawyer to handle your legal matters. It is advantageous when your team is resourceful with innovations, helping you handle startup challenges.
Tip 3. Improve Your liquidity
“Money talks” is a common phrase used to highlight the value of being liquid. You will need sources of funds to help with the smooth running of the business. Liquidity will determine how you begin operations, who you hire, and how well you sleep at night.
Many startups fail to pick up because the entrepreneurs left their finances to chance. Don’t make a similar mistake. Plan your finances well to cover your startup needs. Fortunately, you can utilize several funding options to improve your liquidity.
Before expanding your catch to venture capitalists, why not begin by attracting investors in your niche with a well-written business plan? Venture capitalists will jump into your pre-revenue startup if you have a solid business plan.
You also want to keep your credit score in check. An unfavorable credit score can lower your chances of acquiring additional loans when you need them. Money has “wings,” and without proper planning and budgeting, it will disappear without a trace. Therefore, when launching a startup, ensure you have a budget and emergency backup resources during bad days; otherwise, you will be shocked mid-operation when the cash pool drains out.
Tip 4. Get a mentor or an advisor.
Growing a startup requires walking on unfamiliar paths with multiple decisions to make. Since you may be green, you will greatly benefit from the support of successful entrepreneurs.
Benefits of a mentor include:
- It helps to build confidence
- Improve the entrepreneurs problem-solving skills
- It helps the entrepreneurs develop leadership skills
- It helps you to maximize business performance
- It widens business contacts.
A mentor may not make hard businesses for you but guide you through them to arrive at your own conclusions. An experienced advisor or mentor will equip you with practical advice and challenge you to rise above your fears and achieve your goals.
Tip 5. Invent your solutions
If you plan to launch a startup, you want to ask yourself how your product will solve your prospective consumers’ current and future problems. As an entrepreneur, you want to keep learning and adapting because consumer preferences and business spaces are continually shifting.
Mediocre entrepreneurs realize they need to change after seeing their competitors change. If you want your startup to succeed, you should continue learning new trends and adapting your operations in harmony with those trends. Learning and adapting make you an industry leader rather than a follower.
If you see an opportunity or a problem that was not in your original plan, you could quickly meet with your team to develop a workable solution. The difference between unsuccessful and successful entrepreneurs is sometimes gut and knowledge.
Tip 6. Make quick decisions
Things move very fast when you launch a startup, and you will need to make quick multiple decisions. Entrepreneurs launching a startup are often on their toes examining competitors, watching their businesses, new technologies, and new trends in their industry that they can implement.
Instead of running blind, develop an execution plan to enhance your decision-making strategies. Your team will often rely on you to assign them tasks and guide their work-related decisions.
There is a common adage- failing to plan is planning to fail; therefore, plan your course to help you with decision-making. This is a skill you want to cultivate long before you think of starting a business.
Indecisiveness can be detrimental to the success of your startup, costing you money and lucrative opportunities. Your team may also fail to trust in your leadership skills.
Tip 7. Build relationships
Great emphasis is often placed on an entrepreneur’s ability to develop a profitable business idea, build a strong team, and solicit needed funds to jump-start a business. Still, little credit is given to building relationships.
If you want your startup to die prematurely even before your target customer knows it, fail to build relationships through networking and marketing. Ways to build relationships include:
- Joining business cycles
- Participating in business forums
- Interacting with like-minded entrepreneurs on and offline.
- Sign up for your city’s commerce chambers
Building a strong relationship will open markets you did not know existed. You can connect with your new friends and tap into their followers on social media by sharing what you plan.
The Bottom Line
Creating and growing a profitable business is no sprint; it is a hard long marathon race. If you are not prepared for what follows, you will drop out after meeting a few challenges in your startup journey. However, with the right attitude and perseverance, you will reap the satisfactory result of seeing your business fly and meet its objectives.
At first, you will have anxiety and face financial struggles before the business pick. You may feel out of depth, demoralized, and alone, but if you hang in there, you will succeed in creating a sustainable business that may ensure your financial freedom. Which step do you think is most valuable for your startup?