Thinking of starting a business? Here are THE five key steps.
Whether it be the realisation of a lifelong ambition, to provide a work/life balance or just escape the drudgery of a dead-end job, there comes a time in many people’s lives when they dream of starting their own business.
If you’re thinking of launching your own enterprise, the following ‘5 steps to starting a business’ may help you to increase your chances of success.
Step 1: Ask the question ‘is it really for me?’
Being your own boss can be hugely rewarding. For many, the excitement of creating a new enterprise, the freedom and control over your own destiny and the financial rewards, can make all the hard work worthwhile. However, you have to consider the personal sacrifices and financial risks involved. If you have the determination and support from family and friends then you have a greater chance of success.
Step 2: Make sure you’ll have customers
Do your market research and consider current market conditions. Research your competitors and their strengths and weaknesses. Speak to your potential customers at length to establish how likely they are to buy from you. Give considerable time and effort to market research to identify the potential demand for your products/ services. It can be costly and time consuming but will prove invaluable. Also, dedicate plenty of time to developing your marketing plan.
Step 3: Work out your finances
Once you’ve identified a demand, you need to work out if you can make a profit and maintain an adequate cash flow. Forecast your sales. Identify the costs you will incur to start up and run your business, and don’t forget to factor in your own wages. Then complete your financial forecasts.
Step 4: Understand your legal obligations
The next step is to get to grips with your legal requirements and answer questions such as ‘should I be sole trader or a limited company?’ or ‘how do I manage tax, national insurance and VAT?’. You may also need to consider your compliance with Health and Safety and other regulations that relate to your particular business sector.
Step 5: Get advice when you need it
Whilst the success of your business will largely depend on your hard work, tenacity and unswerving commitment, you may also benefit from accessing advice and guidance from others.
If you are thinking of starting a new business come and see our specialist business advisor’s at My Incubator who can advise you on starting your new venture and provide you with a dedicated hot-desk workspace.
What’s more, the service is free of charge for 3 months!
We have My Incubator centres located all over Herts and Beds in Luton, Potters Bar, Stevenage and Watford, with 2 opening early this year in Bedford and Ware. Don’t feel you have to struggle on your own, start 2012 as you mean to go on and contact us today on 0845 026 2081 or visit us online www.wenta.co.uk/shared-workspace/