When it comes to starting your own business you’ll find it’s not as easy as you thought and you will make mistakes, just remember that nothing is perfect at the start and we are only human after all.
However, there are some things you can do and avoid that will make the experience so much easier.
Below we have listed our top 5 do’s and top 5 don’ts that we think will be beneficial to you. So let’s get the ball rolling and get the don’ts out of the way first.
- Don’t take things personally: Think of your business as your baby. You don’t want anyone to say or do things to hurt it, but criticism plays a big part in the beginning. You have to learn not to take what others say too personally and think of it all as a lesson. All businesses grow and develop at different rates, which makes it easy for us to compare to others. When we take a step back and see the criticism as something helpful we can use it to our advantage. Never get discouraged!
- Don’t always say yes: When you’re starting out you think you need to grab a hold of every opportunity that comes your way, however this isn’t the case. In fact, saying yes all the time is a sure fire way of spreading yourself too thin and distracting you from what really matters. You need to focus on doing a few small things to the best of your ability, which is much better than doing lots at half of your ability.
- Don’t put yourself in a box: It can be very easy to choose a niche that has a specific customer in mind, allowing you to put yourself in a corner. People sometimes do this because they are afraid that they won’t stand up against the competition, but you have to be bold. Broadening your niche opens you up to a wider audience and allows you to prove that you are the better business by offering them a valuable service.
- Don’t be afraid of change: Sometimes things just don’t work out for one reason or another; or maybe you realised that you weren’t as passionate about your niche as you thought. It’s never too late to change direction, even though it is better to do so in the beginning. If you always keep an open mind your possibilities are endless
- Don’t over or under spend: When it comes to how much money you should put into your business you need to find a balance. Learning where and when to spend isn’t easy for a new business, but one thing is for sure and that is that you have to spend money to make money. Sacrifices will need to be made to help your company flourish and you shouldn’t skimp on the essentials. In the long term it will be worth it.
- Do your research: This is one of the most important things you can do in the beginning. You need to know all about your niche and the competitive landscape so that you can offer something better. As well as this you’ll want to find a name that no one has and trademark it so it’s yours, which will stop you from wasting time and money branding something that is already taken.
- Know the Law: As boring as it sounds it is a necessary part of setting up a business and knowing the ins and outs. With the help of lawyers and accountants you can understand all the regulations, licenses and taxes that come with starting a business. This will structure your business in compliance with the law and you’ll be good to go. It is worth the money spent!
- Make time for networking: One of the most important things you can do is to engage with what’s around you. This involves meeting with professional organisations, going to industry events and attending conferences to represent your business. All these will help you to further your business and gain mentorship that could be very beneficial to grow your company.
- Make sacrifices: We’ve all heard that Bill Gates worked 16 hour days for five years when it came to starting Microsoft, but that is what it takes to make a business flourish. You have to be willing to sacrifice some luxuries in your life and that luxury is time. At the beginning it will be just you so you need to work out if you can afford everything the business needs without jeopardizing other aspects of your life, such as rent, mortgages, health etc.
- Be passionate: At the foundation of any business there has to be a passion for the field that you are about the venture into. If you love what you are doing then it will shine through to your clients when it comes to offering them your services. This is something that you should never lose sight of as it will keep you going when times get tough, because they will. Every business goes through ups and downs but they can make you stronger.
Find space – Something close to our heart here at Sparkhouse and that we witness first hand on a day to day basis in successful business, is to find yourself a great office space to set up shop! It gives you a professional space that is separate from your personal life and looks great when inviting over potential clients. It shows you mean business!
GET IN TOUCH TODAY
Here at Sparkhouse we are home to a diverse range of creative, innovative and technology based businesses. So if you are looking for a dynamic environment from which to grow and you fit the bill then we would love to help you with our start-up support.
We will provide you with the best mentoring, guidance and events to get you on your way to success. For more information call us on 01522 837200 or send us an email. We look forward to helping you grow your business!