Updated: Jun 4, 2020
Starting a business can be a daunting task, - trust me, I’ve been there. Whether you’re a newbie starting a business from your home or testing the waters with a second business, it often seems too costly and overwhelming. To put it simply, there are lots of things you can get right and other things that can go very wrong. But don’t let this deter you. Starting a business is exciting and if it’s done right, it can lead you to so many new and exciting opportunities. With all that being said, here are my top five do’s and don’t’s when it comes to starting a business.
Do: Put some structure in your life.
This is a great tip for getting a handle on both your personal and business life. When you’re starting a business, it seems like you have millions of ideas at once that you just can’t keep track of. It can be an overwhelming task to organise these thoughts and ideas, let alone tackle them one by one. However, putting some structure in your life can make this process so much easier. Make yourself a schedule, allotting a few hours at a time to devote to a specific task. When you’re starting out, ask yourself the following: What am I going to achieve at the end of the day/month/year? Having goals set for your business allows you to track your progress, making the endeavour so much more worthwhile when you see the results.
Another way to add structure to your business is by creating protocols that you can refer back to later on. This could be as simple as a branding document with the fonts, sizes, and colours you use. If you’re selling a range of products, make a note of what you think are the top sellers for future marketing purposes. Having this information written down and easily accessible will save you lots of time later on, allowing you to devote more time to new and exciting opportunities instead.
Don’t: Not take advice
Not everyone is out to tear you down. In fact, there are a lot of people who want to see you succeed, whether that be friends, family, acquaintances, or even strangers. Whether or not they’ve started a business, their advice can be integral to your business’s success. Sometimes you get stuck in one way of thinking or looking at things, and these people are great outlets that can offer you a different point of view or a fresh perspective to get you back on the right path. Their inspiration and direction are what make good ideas great.
A business coach or mentor are also great to have on your side as you move through the beginnings of starting up your business. Getting advice from people who have gone through the trials and tribulations of starting a business can be extremely useful. They’ve been through the ups and downs and can help you avoid the same mistakes they made, knowing what works and what doesn’t when it comes to the success of a business. The moral of the story is that there are people who actually want to help, so listen to them.
Do: Sell your idea ASAP
While you might not have all of the kinks of your big idea straightened out, it shouldn’t stop you from getting it out there. If you wait too long, you might not be the first to the market and others may beat you to the punch. Don’t let this happen - be brave, bold, and confident. Getting your idea out there early allows you to build an audience that’ll help you work out those kinks. Get your family and friends on board and build a presence on social media. Along the way, you’ll receive some really valuable feedback that’ll make your big idea become a reality. This approach also allows you to establish yourself as a brand known for listening to its audience and adapting, and you’ll get some loyal customers in the process.
Don’t: Spend lots of money!
You don’t need to spend a lot of money to be successful. Think about social media influencers: these individuals essentially built their brands and rose to fame using free platforms. You can do the same with your business by utilizing free tools and coming up with the right strategy. Establish your business on social media and think about hashtags or topics that are relevant and unique to your mission. This is completely free and is often a major source of traffic for businesses, allowing potential costumers to get a better idea of your brand and its services. You should also set up a landing page for your business using a website builder like Wix, Wordpress, or Squarespace. These are brilliant beginning steps to establish yourself as a credible business and gain recognition without spending loads of money.
Do: Do it!
So many people talk about their big idea but never actually go through with it. It’s hard and intimidating to get off the ground with it all, especially picturing the ups and downs along the way. Don’t get me wrong, you’re going to face many challenges and even failures during your first year. However, a business can’t succeed without any failures. It’s about trial and error and learning from your mistakes. With failures come incredible strides and great moments of success. So don’t sell yourself short - get out there and achieve your dreams!