So you want to start a business, be your own boss, and chase the so-called American Dream? You’re not alone. Every year thousands of new businesses spring up, and thousands of them fail. It’s not easy to get a business going, let alone a successful one. To maximize your chances, make sure you’re well educated on what to expect before you get started.
To begin with, make sure you are disciplined enough. Starting a business takes a lot of hard work and long hours, and there are no paid sick days or vacation days. If you don’t work, you don’t get paid. You also need to make sure you have the right temperament, which includes a lot of patience, especially if you will be working with a lot of customers. Excellent customer service is a must for a successful business. This doesn’t mean the customer is always right (they aren’t) but it means your company handles questions, problems and complaints with professionalism and care. One of the easiest ways to make a customer happy is to simply let them know they are being heard. Click here to understand more.
Finances are another thing you must consider before diving into the world of a business owner. Are you currently employed? Stay that way for at least a year. If you must leave your job, make sure you have at least 6 months (a year is better) of living expenses saved up. The vast majority of businesses do not make a profit until their second year or beyond. If you have a supportive partner who can take on the financial load single handedly, you’re lucky, but you should still have some extra funds saved up. In addition to living expenses don’t forget operating expenses. Do you plan to rent a storefront? Have inventory? (While you could do this from your own home, check with your local city hall to see if any special permits are needed. In some places operating a business where inventory is kept and customers will be going in and out all day is not allowed in a residential area) If so, how do you plan to pay for these expenses. Don’t forget advertising costs, insurance and other expenses as well. If you plan to take out a loan, make sure the monthly payments fit into your budget as it is right now, because there is no guarantee your business will take off right away. So be smart and think before you leap!