[tweetmeme]Making the decision to start a business can be very exciting. It’s a whole new adventure, and often, startup entrepreneurs are so gung-ho to get started.
It is ok to get excited about starting a business. But before heading out to the printer to make your business cards or announce to everyone that you’re starting a business, your first step should be to understand the business that you want to start.
Many home-based entrepreneurs get so caught up with the idea of starting a business that they immediately go for external manifestations of business ownership – e.g. business cards, website, logo, etc.
Take a look at this email we received from our user:
I am an aspiring fashion designer trying to start my own clothing line, and I am at a pitfall. I have various sketches done and business cards. I have a business name and logo, but I do not know what steps I need to take next. Thank you.
She has her cards done. She’s ready with her business name. She’s even created a logo. But she does not know the steps she needs to take to get the business up and running. At least she created her sketches. But she got the process reversed.
And this is a very common problem for home-based entrepreneurs.
If you are thinking of starting a business, know and research what you are getting into. Don’t just jump into entrepreneurship without understanding what the business is all about. For all you know, after you’ve printed hundreds of business cards, you don’t really want this business or you can’t start the business because you don’t have the skills and resources to start it.
Before you even consider getting a logo designed or printing your business cards, know the following first:
- What is this business all about?
- How can I make money from this business?
- What is the need that I will be fulfilling?
- What are the processes involved in this business from start to finish?
- What do I need to do to get the product/service in the hands of the customer?
- What resources must I have?
- Who will need this product or service that I will offer?
- How can I be different from other competitors out there?
Only after you’ve thoroughly understood what the business is and what you need to succeed in it should you start thinking about getting the word out. The first step in starting a business should be to understand what the business is all about.
Go to your library and find books about the business. Scan websites covering this industry. Look for blogs talking about this business, as well as forums and other gathering places online visited by members of this industry. If an industry association exists, check the resources they have available to their members. Often, they will have industry reports that can give you substantial information of what to expect from starting a business. If there are tradeshows in your industry, try to get into it.
There are many ways to learn about the business. Arm yourself first with information to help you sufficiently prepare for your entrepreneurial adventure.