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How To ‘Start Up’ a Business (6 Great Tips to Starting Out Strong)

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Entrepreneurs are a wonderful lot that venture through a life riddled with uncertainties for two reasons. First; they are really concerned about starting up a particular business; two, they love being their own boss. Those worthy to be called ‘entrepreneurs’ are those who desire the chance to make their own decisions and to rise or fall based on their own ingenuity and hard work. In addition, they crave the opportunity to make more money and the freedom that comes with being one’s own boss. In other words, if your life’s aspiration is to ‘live and let live’, you’ll do well working for others but if you would rather work for yourself, here are some factors you need to consider.

1. First on your checklist – Do some research, some more and more…

You need to first consider in detail the marketplace and the opportunities that are available to you. Learn from successful businesses that are in existence. Ask questions… How did they become successful? How much money do they make? How much money would you need to start a similar business? There are so many options and ideas for new business start ups and there is no shortage of books and associations. In addition, you have the internet to help you decide on what might interest you.

2. Product or Service?: Your business will either offer products or services to consumers. Knowing what it takes, either the funds required or the skills required to start both businesses will go a long way to help you decide. Service businesses seem to be less expensive and demanding to start since there is not much stock to buy. What can also help in making a good decision on what type of business to start might be determining which will best fit your temperament, skills and goals.

3. Analyze your skills and experience: It is time to check your line of experience and the different skills you’ve acquired in the process. Suppose you have spent your career doing marketing for major corporations. You then have invaluable skills that should be tapped when deciding what business is right for you. Now, it may be that you are tired of doing whatever it is you have been doing and that is why you have decided to start your own business. Still, be open to the option of finding a business that gives you a leg up on the competition because of your background.

4. Consider your options: What options? Well, you could start up a new business or decide to buy an existing business or you could start a franchise or create a home-based business. You could also start up a business on the web or start up a retail outfit depending on the goals you want to achieve… Really, the possibilities are many. What you need to realize is that you have options and opportunities to explore.

5. Narrow your options: Your defining moment starts when you have narrowed down your options based on the first four steps you have worked upon. But the next step may be more important. It is important that you find some people who own and run the type of business you have narrowed your options down to. You’ll need their insight, experience, support and sometimes, caution.

6. Take off time: To start a business and be your own boss, you need to surround yourself with passion, do your homework and find a niche that fills a market need. Do that, and you are well on your way.

Mary OdunugaMary Odunuga is a graduate of Obafemi Awolowo University, freelance writer and media consultant for a government agency.

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