Have you ever thought ‘I just want to win the lottery and go sit on an island some-where?” That was me for many years. I was unhappy with my job, the long hours and all the stress that came with it. I dreamed of being free and living life on my own terms. Have you ever felt torn between the drive for earning good money in a fast pace turnover of the corporate world and the freedom to explore a world you’ve been guided to? More and more people are asking this question. Enter the pandemic, and the universe really gave me the push I needed to set up my own business. Here are my top 5 tips when starting out and setting up your own business.
FIND YOUR WHY This is the most important aspect. Be really honest with your-self. You’re setting up a business, so making money is a given. But why else do you want to do it? For example, in my case it was to help empower people for them to live the lives they want. Connect it to something wider… I say connect your why to how it will help your clients and the planet/humanity as a whole. Once you can answer these questions, then you have a very strong purpose and your whole business and value system can follow on from that. In the future, people will want to buy from and work for conscious organisations (organisations that consider people, planet and profit in equal measure). Make your business one of those.
HOW WILL YOU SELL THIS Once you know what you want to do, consider your products. So for example, my vision is to help people create the lives they want. I do this by empowering them and helping them set up their own businesses. This can be one to one or in groups. Are you planning on selling a product or service? What will make your product or service stand out. Why would they buy from you rather than your competitors? One little tip: do not compete on price; rather compete on service or quality.
NICHE, NICHE, NICHE I’m sure you have heard people say this. It is so important when you start out. You cannot be all things to all people. It always amazes me when I ask clients who they want to serve and they say ‘every-one’. You cannot serve everyone and when you start out, you certainly wouldn’t have the budget or brand name to do so. Far far better to select a tight niche and be known for that. It will help your marketing, messaging and help you to prioritise where to advertise and network.
GET TESTING All businesses will pivot, that is a given. You will have an idea in your head and it will evolve based upon how people want to receive it and the feedback you get. So don’t spend too long perfecting your idea, far better to get testing as it will definitely change. Ask your friends and family. Go into networking groups and start testing. Marc Randolph, co-founder of Netflix says “You have to figure out how to quickly, easily, and cheaply get your idea out of your head and collide it with reality.” He further goes on to say “Start now and start small; never leave an idea in your head - within one year of doing so, I witnessed the greatest professional and personal growth in my life.”
DREAM “Believe in your dreams and dream big. After you’ve done that, dream bigger." - Howard Schultz. Write a vision board, sit down and imagine your life once you have set up this business. How is the business performing, what are you feeling, what is your life-style? Does it feel good and enticing? If it does then you know that it is for you. Holding that vision will give you the anchor to keep going when things get tough.
Now is a good time to start a business. “Most economists expect the unemployment rate – which counts how many people are able to work and want a job, but can’t find one – to rise in 2021” BBC, March 2021. In addition, “Almost 50% more businesses were created in June 2020 than in June 2019, according to the Centre for Entrepreneurs.” And this trend is expected to continue. 2020 has been a significant year of change on so many levels – a lot of it forced! However, this year has really been asking each of us to step into things that matter, our true passions and our highest potentials. Whether it’s a stopgap, a hobby, or even if it becomes your full-time business venture.