Contemplating a new business? There’s a ton of start-up advice; everyone has something to say to a potential entrepreneur.
Anna Mazisyuk, owner and founder of Sherman Oaks Accounting & Bookkeeping powered by One Source Services, Inc., would be the first to tell you there’s no perfect recipe for starting a new business.
Here are some things that helped her make One Source Services, Inc. into the successful business it is today:
Make Solutions, Not Excuses
Many of us dream of being our own boss, yet so few do it. There’s a lot to lose and no guarantee of success.
Money, family responsibilities, not enough time; the list of excuses for not starting is infinite.
Rather than letting excuses hold them back, successful entrepreneurs examine why their ideas might not work and find solutions.
Understand the difficulties your target customers face and seek to fix them. Think about what problems your product or service will solve.
Anna saw many entrepreneurs lost in the weeds of day-to-day operations not doing what they dreamed they would when they opened their business in the first place.
She solved the problem by offering high-quality bookkeeping, accounting, CFO, and other services, giving her clients the freedom to pursue their original vision.
Understanding the problems faced by your target clients and how you can solve them will help keep your motives in focus and create a brand to better market your business.
Keep It Simple, Smarty.
Useful, simple ideas can become expensive, complicated end-products that nobody wants.
Is that costly new feature really necessary or is it just another bell-and-whistle you can do without?
Keep your customer commitments and exceed their expectations without over-complicating things. Maintain an unyielding focus on quality with straightforward goods and services.
Realistically Analyze Costs
How much will it will cost to launch and sustain your idea?
How much will you need for rent, supplies, marketing, payroll, taxes, etc.? Calculate as accurate a guess as possible.
Add living costs like your mortgage, car, food, healthcare, etc. Prioritize them on a list starting with what must be paid first and ending with what you can skip if you run out of money.
Now QUADRUPLE that number to cover unexpected costs. You’ll be better off over-prepared than under-funded.
Have A Worst-Case-Scenario Plan
Over half of new businesses fail within their first five years. It can happen to any entrepreneur and in fact, often does.
Imagine your worst-case-scenario, just in case.
How would you manage if you lost your income? Would you get a job, move in with family, or go without your usual comforts? How far would your savings stretch?
What could get in the way of your plan? A car wreck, injury, or expensive household repair?
Thoroughly consider every situation that might come up and how you’d handle it if your business should flop.
You’ve heard the expression: don’t quit your day job.
Some entrepreneurs protect their existing employment by rolling-out their new business in phases.
They work on their new business when they’re not at their “day job” so they can steadily evolve from employee to entrepreneur and preserve their regular salary until they are ready to rely on their new business.
When the new business has been providing consistent and adequate cash inflow, they quit their “day job” and devote themselves to full-time business ownership.
Because even if your new business is an instant success, it may take time to start producing steady income.
Sell! Sell! Sell!
Especially when your business is new, you must share it with the world!
Many new entrepreneurs are intimidated by the idea of selling. But you cannot afford to be shy if you want your business to succeed.
New entrepreneurs must constantly market and network their business to be successful.
You may be pleasantly surprised by how comfortable you can become speaking in front of other people and selling your business after you’ve done it a few times.
Follow the Rules
Business owners must understand and follow the rules of business.
Failing to remain compliant can result in expensive penalties and fines.
The rules vary by state, industry, and business entity and it’s a business owner’s responsibility to stay on top of them as they change.
All business owners and entrepreneurs are strongly encouraged to consult with a small business accountant (like us) and a business lawyer to assist with things like implementing accounting systems, registering the business, tax liabilities, employer laws, forming legal structures, and more.
If you’re starting a new business, then you’ve surely got passion. Hold onto it! It will urge you to continually improve processes and grow your business.
But, balance the passion with knowledge.
Conduct market research on your industry. Talk to target customers. Know your business’s potential! Keep asking questions. Network with other professionals who can help in areas where you aren’t an expert, like accounting, legal matters, and financial investments.
The certified professionals at One Source Services, Inc. dba Sherman Oaks Accounting & Bookkeeping are here to help you every step of the way!