Deciding to start a business can be a daunting and risky adventure.
A very good starting point is a business plan. This is a good opportunity to think through your business idea and carry out any research before the business goes live.
Here are some of the areas a good business plan may cover.
- What will your business do? It can be a good opportunity to think carefully about what you’ll be doing in specific terms – and perhaps spot any major problems – before anyone else does.
- Have you decided on the legal status of your business – will you trade on your own account, or in partnership, or as a limited company? The best choice will depend on your particular circumstances.
- How will the business be managed? It may be a small business, but whether it’s marketing or VAT returns, someone needs to be responsible.
- What’s the marketing strategy? Your business doesn’t exist yet and, when it does, the chances are you’ll want to tell your intended customers what you’re offering, and be confident they’ll want to buy. What revenue targets have you set -and how do you know the goal is realistic?
- How much do you need to start the business, and what’s your cashflow forecast?
- How is it all going to happen? You may need premises. You may also need to make sure you’ve got stock, all the equipment you’ll need, and your staff. You may want some advice and, if you do, you may want to consider the best time to get it.
- What are the risks? How strong is the competition, and what if customers don’t start coming to you? What if one of your key suppliers goes out of business, or a senior member of staff leaves?
When starting a business, few of us claim to be experts in all areas. It’s important to get the right advice at the right time, and that’s where we may come in. We have been involved in start-ups ranging from part-time e-traders to dot-com entrepreneurs for years, and look forward to continuing to help the businesses of tomorrow for many more years to come.