10 Tips to Starting a Successful Business

These are 10 tips that will help you start a successful business. Stay on top of these and the process goes a little bit more smoothly…

1) Choose something you LOVE TO DO. Maybe this is the most important of the whole starting a business process. If you don’t choose to do what you love – you won’t put 110% effort into it. Choose something you’re passionate about.

2) Don’t quit the day job! Yet. Keep your other job funding you for as long as it makes sense. Sure one of the reasons you’re starting your own business is to get out from the thumb of someone else… but, it won’t be wise to quit your main job until the money starts rolling in at your new business. Don’t hope it will… get it rolling in first!

3) You need help. Don’t go it alone. You need feedback to help you make decisions. If I was the only one deciding what a website should look like I’d probably fail at web design everytime. I know I’m not a good designer of graphics and layout – so I enlist others to help me. You should too.

4) Find customers first – while you’re still working. Get your marketing plans going immediately becasue they’re most important.

5) Write a business plan and have someone at the Small Business Administration have a look at it. The main reason for a business plan is that you have a plan to go forward. It helps you set goals. It helps you see the realistic as well as the dreams. Most are long on dreams – the business plan shows you the reality of it.

6) Research everything! Don’t neglect any areas. You must be an expert on your chosen business topic and you must know or know someone who knows all you need to know! Joining business groups in your niche can be a big help. Online forums covering your niche is also a great place to get free information from people that want to help as they’re probably not in direct competition with you.

7) Call the Pros. Outsource if you’re not an expert on a subject. You probably don’t know everything 100% but if you know it 80% go ahead and do it. You’ll need other opinions – experts that are 100% and that will share some of that with you. Don’t do menial tasks if you can pay someone to do it. They suck up time and brain power. Outsource!

8) Find more money than you have.  Talk to friends, family, banks, credit unions, and the SBA. Brainstorm ways to make cash before you go live and never stop thinking about how to continue funding your startup. Startups take more cash than you probably have planned for. Know that now. Adjust now.

9) Be honest, trusthworthy, professional from the start. Your reputation in small business is everything. Word of mouth is spread more quickly for good people. Be a good people – whatever it takes. Always do the right thing.

10) Consult with an accountant and make sure you’re on top of the tax and other legal issues you need to be. Most small business owners neglect this and think they’ll get around to it. Fees and penalties can add up quickly. Stay ahead of this game or find an accountant that can nag you for forms and payments you need to make.