Adrian knew it was time to start his own business. He had been thinking about starting a business for a while and was running out of excuses. He felt it wasn’t going to be easy, though. All his adult life Adrian had worked for other people. There had been no reason for him to enquire into what was involved in starting a business. He knew there were laws to be obeyed, and rules to follow; accounts to be created; forms to be filled out; taxes to be paid – but where does one actually start?
Start Your Business Here!
There are several sections to consider when starting a business. It’s not at all difficult and sectionalizing actually makes it easier.
1. What are you going to sell?
Retail products? Services? Business-to-business sales? This is what your business will be about. Creating products, advertising and doing the work. Let’s call that Creating your business.
2. What are you going to be?
Let’s call this Creating your company. Will you be a sole proprietor, a partnership (starting a busines with someone else), a limited liability company? Best to do this through a lawyer. Cost shouldn’t be much but worth paying to get it done right and legal. This will include getting your business licence – the lawyer will take care of all that.
3. Setting up your accounts
Really part of Creating your company is establishing your books and financial records, including your tax structure. Best to get with an accountant for that.
4. Open a business bank account
Open a bank account in the name of your business. A talk with your bank manager will explain what is involved. It might be a good idea to start with your bank manager. Before doing aanything else, make an appintment to meet your bank manager. He will guide you and may even be able to refer you to lawyer, accountant and anyone else you need to consult.
5. Will you employ people?
Staffing. Will you be hiring people? Your accountant will advise on that and set up your books / accounts accordingly.
6. Work from home or rent space?
Do you intend to work at home or will you rent workspace? This decision will affect how your lawyer and accountant set up things. You will be able to change later.
7. Check for local resources
Starting a business benefits your local community and there’s plenty of advice and help available to you locally. The government or local authority will likely have programs to help and encourage new businesses. Visit your local librarian. The public library systems all over the world are a wealth of information and The Librarian (every library has at least one trained and dedicated librarian) is one of the most knowledgeable people in the world. I am always amazed at the knowledge of these wonderful people.
It sounds like a lot but it really isn’t complicated. Just take one step at a time. You have lots of direct help available in your local area.
Of course, I would caution against taking shortcuts to starting a business. Set yourself up right and you can project yourself into a sound and lucrative career. Do it wrong and you could find yourself on the wrong side of the law, liability claims or the tax man. There are professionals who can advise you properly, relevant to your local laws and ordinances. Some cities even have a department devoted to new businesses, with New Business packets of information and the forms that need to be completed. Again, your local Librarian will point you in the right direction.
One Word of Warning.
Information you see on your Facebook Newsfeed. and elsewhere on the internet, can be very unreliable. Still, you can get good information from government websites (.gov) and university websites (.edu)
Don’t make this difficult for yourself. It may seem like a lot but nothing you can’t handle. Half a day in the reference section of your public library – with assistance from the librarian – will give you a good grounding in starting a business.
From there on, a lawyer and an accountant will have you properly established in short order. After that, a business coach or consultant will be able to help you. But do, please, get yourself and your business set up properly to begin your journey.
A Little History
Perhaps a little history will help you decide on the efficacy of setting up properly. I had been employed in large corporations for 15 years before I started my own business. Like so many new business owners, I had no idea about starting a business or setting up a company. I was also in an area where legalities were less stringent and my competitors, for all I knew, were not properly legal. I could have easily skipped this step.
Nevertheless, I had a management consultant set me up, deal with business registration, legal paperwork, insurances, employee registration, tax registration, etc. I just handed the whole thing over to his office and they took care of everything. I was up and running, fully legal, accounts in place and initial investment in a bank account, in less than a month. During that month, I hustled for our first contract.
Long story short, in six years I had turned my dining room table business into a multi-million dollar company. I believe this was possible because I made the effort to set up properly. I took the certainty, stability and confidence that gave me, to create a fabulus business that fed over 30 families (30+ employees) and provided the best quality service by far in our neck of the woods. Not to mention great income for myself and our staff. (Read the full story)
With the company creation under way, there is one final thing to establish. You know what your company will do. You know how you will do it. Make sure you don’t forget to determine why you are doing it. Most business start-ups forget this step and I beleve it is most important. If you compare the most successful companies with the rest, you will discover that the successful companies know why they are in business.
You may have decided to make environmentally friendly products – your WHY could be to protect the environment. If you are estabishing a florist, your WHY may be to make every home beautiful.
People don’t buy what you sell, they buy what you believe.
You, like Adrian, will find a properly established business gives you a solid base from which to go out and save and serve the world.