By Randy Wooden, Director, Professional Center by Goodwill Industries of Northwest North Carolina
Have you ever thought of starting your own business? Many people have. Before you make the move to self-employment, there are things to consider; let’s look at a few of them.
Being in charge You call the shots and run your business the way you want as long as you obey the law.
Financial gains Self-employment gives you the opportunity to potentially earn more by working longer and harder.
Sense of pride and satisfaction When you build something from scratch, seeing your hard work pay off can make it feel worthwhile.
Insufficient capital Most new businesses fail during their first several years due to insufficient capital. Do you have access to enough money to make it through your startup phase? If you plan to live off savings while you get up and running, you need a plan and budget. If you are borrowing money, you need a plan for how to pay it off.
Time commitment It takes long hours and hard work to start and run your own business. Are you and your loved ones able and committed to make that sacrifice?
Necessary skills If you are starting your business alone as a sole proprietor, do you have all the skills necessary for success? For example, if you are a computer repair person who is very good at performing the technical portion of your work, do you have the marketing and sales skills to promote your services before you can perform the actual repairs? The best computer person on the planet who cannot generate sales will not succeed. Going into business – or swapping services – with someone whose skills complement yours might be advisable.
You can use online resources to build your skills and connect with networks to improve your chances of success. Check out the following:
Google for Startups is a collection of online tools and best practices for getting your business up and running, from raising funds and hiring the right team to developing new products. https://startup.google.com/
When you engage customers with a free Google My Business account, you get more than a business listing. Your free Business Profile lets you easily connect with customers across Google Search and Maps. https://www.google.com/business/
Look before you leap and learn from others with an understanding of the opportunities and challenges what you will encounter.