The seven things you need to make your business idea a reality
Have you ever thought about starting your own business? Of course you have - just about all of us have. In fact, you've probably even thought about a specific concept for what your business would be, whether it's a new product you've thought about inventing, or just an improvement on an existing business model. Most people, of course, never take these ideas and manage to turn them into a reality.
8 Nov 2017 17:07
But why not? What’s stopping them from turning those business concepts into profit generators, and what can you do to bring your business idea to the real world? What you need
Turning a business idea into an actual business isn’t as hard as people make it out to be. It’s true that many businesses fail within the first few years of development
, but at least they overcame the hurdle of getting started — and the entrepreneurs who helmed them walked away with more experience they can bring to their next venture.
So what exactly do you need to start a business, assuming you have a sketch of an idea in mind?
Are you ready?
- A goal-oriented mindset. First, you need to have a goal-oriented mindset, as there are multiple pieces to put into place if you want to make your business a reality. If you’re typically a wishful thinker, speculating about the things you could have, you’ll need to switch gears and start thinking about meaningful achievements (and how to get them). Think of the entrepreneurial process as a long to-do list that you check off, item by item.
- Supportive numbers (and flexibility). Next, you need to do research to see if your business model is feasible. You’ll need to do market research to see if your target audience is right for your brand, competitive research to see who else is out there, and some financial forecasting to analyse your revenue and profitability potential. Then, if the numbers don’t make your idea seem feasible, you need to be flexible enough to change that idea.
- A formally documented plan. After you get the numbers to agree with your concept (one way or another), you’ll need to write up a formally documented business plan. This isn’t something that can exist as a loose concept in your head; you’ll be using this plan as a blueprint for creating and growing your business, and as evidence to convince investors and early partners to join your cause. Don’t skimp on the details here.
- A way to get initial capital. Even inexpensive businesses need some capital to get started, so you’ll need to find some way to get that capital. You may have some reserve savings, or you could ask your friends and family members to chip in. Or, if you’re looking for sizable amounts, you could consider venture capital or angel investors. Another option is to seek an online loan or try crowdfunding if you have a physical product you’re trying to create.
- A legal foundation. Once you have everything in place, you should work with a lawyer to figure out your legal needs and establish a good foundation for your business. Make sure you’re operating squarely within copyright laws, protect your assets, ensure you have all the certifications and documents you need to operate legally, and if you plan on hiring people, make sure you’re hiring them within the requirements of the law.
- Sufficient hours to invest. Even the greatest and simplest ideas won’t become anything unless someone puts in the hours necessary to make them flourish. If you’re serious about your business, you need to be ready to invest full-time hours into your work — at a minimum. That might mean quitting your job or limiting your other responsibilities to make things work. If you’re not willing to do that, you may need to reconsider how serious you are about making this happen.
- A support team. Finally, even if you aren’t hiring anybody, you need to have a support team in place. Depending on your business and your needs, that might include partners, employees, family members, friends, or even mentors. You need people to bounce ideas off of, people to help you, and people to support you when things get tough.
Starting a business is a risk, and a major investment of time, but if you truly want to become an entrepreneur, you need to stop making excuses for yourself
. There’s no guarantee your idea will be able to stand up to scrutiny, but you can always change it, and there’s no guarantee your business will be as profitable as it looks in theory, but it can always evolve. You have to take significant steps forward if you ever want to succeed.