You have a great idea, you’ve done the research and you’re ready to take the next step: starting your own business. As scary as it is exciting, running your own business comes with so many advantages, including being your own boss, doing what you enjoy and putting something out there that you believe in.
However, starting your own business is rarely simple, and entrepreneurs across California like yourself have many questions at the start. Here are five tips to keep in mind:
1. Surround yourself with the right people and partners
You might choose to build your business from the ground up on your own. However, know that you do not need to be an expert in everything. Whether you choose to share the leadership of your budding business with another or seek professional help for the financial, legal or technical side of things, find people who share your vision and passion.
Make sure to network as well. You may have a great idea or product but networking with the right people in the right industry will help your business gain greater visibility.
2. Write a business plan
While this may seem simple, it often gets disregarded and saved for another day. Developing a business plan can be essential to stay organized and solidify your concept in writing. There is no one right way to write a business plan, but Forbes notes that a typical business plan might include the following sections:
- An executive summary
- Mission and goals of the operation
- Background summary and organizational structure
- Plans for marketing, finances, etc.
- Summary and conclusion
3. Select your business structure
The legal structure you choose for your business will determine a lot, including notably how much liability you as the owner take on. The right structure for your business is highly dependent on your company, you, any other owners and more. A sole proprietorship might be right for you if you’re starting out with just you and possibly a few employees. However, if you wish to limit your personal liability in the business, a limited liability company, or LLC, might be a more attractive option. As the pros and cons of each business structure will vary for each business, working with an attorney can be helpful at this stage.
4. Address how you will fund your business
One key financial consideration that is hard to ignore is securing proper funding for your venture. This might be as straightforward as using your own savings or loans from family or friends – or it may entail securing loans, grants or financing from outside investors. In many cases, your funding may come from a combination of sources.
5. Make sure you’re passionate about what you’re doing
This may go without saying. However, passion for your idea and your growing business can be key to success down the road. Starting a business can be incredibly hard in the beginning, and passion can fuel your motivation to keep going when challenges arise.