A lot of people have woken up to the reality that getting a job is not as easy as it used to be anymore and are therefore seeking alternative means to livelihood. Even people who have the job have realized that their salaries are only enough to make ends meet and are also seeking other ways to make wealth. Undoubtedly, one of such means is starting a business (i.e. becoming an entrepreneur).
A lot of people these days have started one business or the other while some are just about to start one. If you are reading this and you are one of the people just thinking of what business to start, then this is the part where your attention is greatly needed.
Here are a few tips on things to consider before you start your own business.
- THINK OF AN EXISTING PROBLEM AROUND YOU AND WAYS YOU CAN HELP.
Helping people solve their problems is one major way to be successful as an entrepreneur. Before you decide on what to do, think of one thing that is lacking around you that you are sure you have the ability to provide. It could be goods or services.
Take for instance in this COVID-19 era where schools have been shut for months, parents are afraid that their children will not remember what they were taught in the previous term and they need someone to help coach them. If you think you have the required knowledge and patience to handle kids, you can organize lessons for them. Don’t be surprised that even after schools resume, some parents may still want you to continue taking their children extra lessons. Gradually, you grow and soon, you may even have a large coaching center.
Don’t just start ANY business. Instead, look for a problem to solve. That is the spirit of an entrepreneur.
- DO WHAT INTERESTS YOU
Before you even think of starting a business at all, you should understand that owning a business can be very challenging. It is therefore important that you choose a business you enjoy doing because when those challenges come, one of the things that will keep you going is the love you have for what you do. This is very similar to marriage. If you marry someone you truly love, that love will keep the marriage going even in the face of challenges and turbulence.
Consider what you love doing. You may pick one of your hobbies and start a business with it. I should however stress that once a hobby of yours becomes a business, you should let people know that you are no longer doing it as a hobby but now a business else, you may be easily exploited. In the same vein, do not convert all your hobbies to enterprises, else you won’t have any way to relax and have fun.
- GET TRAINED
Once you have concluded on what business to do, look for how to get trained and become professional at it. You should understand that no matter what problem you are solving, someone has already started before you and there is competition already. Your business has to the options customers/clients have to choose from for the same service/product. One thing that can give you an edge is your professionalism.
While starting a business, online platforms like YouTube, Instagram and even Google should be your friends. Don’t be too stingy to spend money on data to browse. It is called investing in yourself because you need all the knowledge you can get before starting a business.
- SEEK ADVICE FROM PEOPLE WHO HAVE BEEN THERE
Get close to people who have already started your line of business. Ask them questions on how they started, the challenges they faced and how they were able to overcome each phase as they grow their business.
Have a mentor in your line of business whom you look up to for advice. Trust me, you will need all the counsel you can get as a fresh business owner.
- GET THE RIGHT MARKET
No matter how nice your product/service may be, you sure need an active market for it. Consider what part of the population needs your product/services the most. They are called target consumers. Find out the location where the target consumers are more abundant. That is your market.
- REACH MORE PEOPLE
We are in the digital age where one can reach more people from one’s comfort. The consumers in your immediate environment can never be enough for you. Therefore, you need to reach more people. Make use of social media platforms to advertise yourself. Create awareness for your new business every time you have the opportunity to. You may even make a tee-shirt that carries your business name which you can wear once a while. Tell everyone you meet about your new business at every chance you get.
- SURROUND YOURSELF WITH PEOPLE WHO CAN HELP YOU GROW
This is very important. The people who surround you are very likely to determine if your new business will grow or not. You need friends and family who will show support by patronizing you and/or referring potential customers to you. People who are ready to trust you on what you do. People who will give you encouragement and support.
A business plan is very important. Do a survey. Ask around for what will it cost you to start up. Count your cost and make sure you have almost everything out in place. A start-up business without a plan is already tending to collapse.
Not everyone believes in God, but if you do, please pray to Him to help you through your new journey. He will surely lead you on the right path and connect you with the right people.
After all these, you are most likely to have although not challenge-free but a successful journey in your new business.
I’d love to know your thought on this piece, don’t forget to leave your comment below.
Feyisayo Mercy Olufemi.
- Feyisayo Mercy Olufemi, a graduate of biochemistry who has always had a flair for writing. Being a scientist almost killed the writing spirit, but not the business spirit. Being a business person who runs several business including baking, graphics design, sales and lots more, I have always had something to share. As a team too who sees more than other people see in a thing sometimes, there are several thoughts to let out.