We all have had an idea on a business we could start at one point in time. With constant success stories in the media, sometimes it seems really easy to start your own business. However, it’d be wise to ask yourself a few questions before declaring that you’re a business owner. Answering these questions will tell you if you’re ready, or if you need some more time and thought:
Do you have a product or service that people are willing to pay for?
Before you start your business, you have to know what it is. Do you have a product that people need? Do you offer a service that will make lives easier? But most importantly, are people willing to pay for your solution? One of the best ways to answer this question is to see if anyone else is offering something similar. Who will your competitors be? What advantage will you have over them? Thinking about how you will provide value to your customers is the first step.
Are you willing to put in the time necessary?
Starting a business is bigger than doing something as a hobby. It will require a lot of time, especially in the beginning. Many entrepreneurs spend even more hours on their own business than they did when they had a traditional full time job. Consider your other priorities, especially family, and think about if you can afford to invest the time to start and maintain your business.
Do you have the resources to make it happen?
Every business requires tools to make it run smoothly. If you’re creating a product, do you have all the materials necessary to build the item in bulk? If you’re offering a service, do you have the technology and skills to get it to your customer? If you still need some things, don’t run for the most expensive thing in the market. Choose the resource that will get your business up and running sooner rather than later without breaking the bank.
What is your end goal?
Ask yourself why are you starting a business. Is it a hobby that you discovered can make you money on the side? Do you intend for the business to replace and surpass your full time income from your job? Is it a way to make extra money for a specific purpose, or do you see longevity in your business? Having an end goal in mind before starting will help you determine how your business should be run.
What do you need to do to get started?
One of the biggest problems for entrepreneurs sometimes is just getting started. Don’t become a victim of analysis paralysis. It doesn’t need to be perfect when you first get started, it just has to work. What are the things you need in order to get started as soon as possible?
Once you answer these questions honestly, you will have the answers you need to get started. Review your answers with a trusted advisor, so that they can provide constructive feedback and ask you questions you may not have thought about yourself. Then, get started!