Starting and running your own small business isn’t just a big deal—it’s HUGE! There are so many factors that go into turning your ideas into a profitable business, and of course there are no guarantees, but you can definitely improve your chances of success to start and run a business with a little planning, preparation, and good sense.
So, what does it really take to start and run a business? How can you tell you’re ready BEFORE you start?
Well, unfortunately you can’t. And usually when I have a client who is afraid to make the leap, I tell them to do it anyway. However, there are some factors that can definitely work in your favor:
- Decision making. Can you make a decision? All by yourself? And usually quickly? As a business owner, you will have 10,000 decisions to make over the course of a single week—what kind of lighting fixtures, which plumber to use, who to hire, when to fire, Mac or PC…the list goes on and on—and you will be 100% responsible for all those decisions (even if you’re in a partnership).
- Organization. It’s not the most glamorous part of owning a business, but keeping your books, schedules, inventory, daily task, etc organized is one of the most important parts of the job description.
- Drive. It’s not enough to want it—you have to work for it. Owning a small business means making big sacrifices in your life. If you’re not motivated, driven, and consistent, it can get the best of you. Moreover, no one will be there to tell you what or when to do anything. It will take your drive to make all those special projects happen.
- Stamina. So, you want to trade in your 9-5 for the freedom of owning your own business? Heads up—the first few years can be tough and you can find yourself working 24/7. You’ll need stamina—both emotional and physical—to maintain your sanity.
- People skills. Ug, as an introvert, the struggle is real, but as a business owner, you need to deal with a LOT of people. From employees and contractors to inspectors and lawyers, vendors, clients, accountants, there are so many people you will be working with on a daily basis. You will need to be able to handle all the egos and drama, or you will go insane trying.
- Family matters. As I mentioned before, the first few years of any business are often the hardest, and although your family is not directly related to your business (unless you are partnered with a spouse or family member), they will be directly affected by it. Long hours, stress, seemingly endless (ridiculous) conflict will be tough on anyone, so make sure your family is on-board for the ride.
Having these six things won’t guarantee your success as a business owner, but they can’t hurt…right?
What have you found helped you most in your business?