Once you are bitten by the entrepreneurial bug it is understandable that you will be raring to go with your latest idea or project, but it is worth taking a few moments out first to consider what it is you will need in order to start the ball rolling. Here are just a few things that it is best to consider before pressing on:
- Register for tax and national insurance
Once you are trading you will need to ensure that you are registered for self-assessment and national insurance, with the appropriate exemptions for the latter if applicable. Failing to do so on time comes with a fine, and excuses are seldom accepted.
- Business premises
Do you nave somewhere to operate from? Children are lovely but having them screaming around you is not conducive to a good working environment. And if you’re retiring to the spare room at Mum’s does she have broadband installed?
Almost every business these days needs a website, even if it is a simple free blog. You’ll be advertising it from day one, so it needs to be ready by the time the business is launched.
- Contact Portfolio
For most modern businesses these days a landline telephone is nowhere enough to make you fully accessible. At the bare minimum you need to have an operating address (purchase a mailing address if your home one is not suitable), mobile phone, e-mail address and handles on Twitter and Facebook all lined up before you venture forth.
Do you need them? And if you do, have you got them? Can you afford to pay them from the beginning?
- Market Assessment
Are you confident that you know your market? Have you set your prices at where they ought to be? What is the competition like within your niche? Are there any legal impediments to the work that you have chosen? And what future is there for the industry that you are moving into?
- Marketing Strategy
Wherever you are starting out, you will need a strategy for growth. Where do you see yourself, and your business, being in five years’ time?
Is what you are doing legal? Are there any impediments or obstacles which will need to be addressed before you launch? An impending legislation which might impact upon your plans?
- Starting Capital
Some businesses require a substantial investment before setting up, others less so. Do you need to rent premises, buy stock, pay workers? Sometimes these things won’t wait until you have turned a profit. In most areas it would make sense to have some initial investment which will keep things ticking over whilst the business is in its embryonic stage. Once you are making decent money you can use your sales to offset your initial investment.
- Can You Cope Financially Whilst Your Business Takes Off?
More often than lot a brand new business will not turn enough profit to be able to pay you a decent living wage from the off. More likely it will be a work in progress, which could begin to pay you back maybe six months or even more along the line. If you are to ride the storm, you will need to ensure that you have enough to live on in the short-term. It is very difficult to be effective in business when you are desperate.