Business ownership is a journey with never-ending lessons. However, many people cut their journey short due to a lack of preparation. Here are seven steps to prepare for business ownership:
Solve the problem
In order for a business to be successful, it must solve a problem. Identify what problem your potential business solves. Make sure your product or service is a “must-have” item as opposed to a “nice to have” item.
Ask for help.
Seek mentorship from a seasoned entrepreneur in your field. Look within your own network of professionals–or even better–register for one of our Events and gain powerful connections with notable entrepreneurs in the Nashville community.
Assess your finances.
Research shows that 42% of small businesses fail because they run out of money. Do not let that happen to you–consider your coins first! Determine how much capital you already have, how much you will need, and how you will go about obtaining the rest of it.
If you plan to seek investor funding or financing, start writing a business plan and create a stellar pitch. Do your homework on the costs associated with your business.
Draft a business plan.
A business plan is the strategic and comprehensive written description of what your business is all about and what will bring to the marketplace. It will help you get on the right track–financially and structurally. Consider having a second pair of (professional) eyes review your business plan before delivering it to stakeholders.
Determine your legal structure.
The most common legal structures for a small business are:
- sole proprietorship
- partnership, corporation
- “S” corporation
- limited liability corporation (LLC)
Consider which entity structure offers the best tax, financing, and financial benefits for you and your business. Seek the guidance of an accountant to assist you in making this important decision.
Set up your location
The location of your business is critical as it affects your costs, sales, and so much more. Before settling down, consider these factors of the location:
- reputation and history
Assemble your team
If you’re hiring employees, start outlining all of the positions you need and the duties and responsibilities of each position. If you plan on outsourcing, draft your independent contracting agreement and start your search of qualified team members.
Embark on your business ownership journey on the right track. Schedule a consultation with the best and brightest at the Nashville Business Incubation Center today.