Starting A Business? 5 Easy Tips For Success

Aug 24 / Angela Flores/Think Design Today
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It’s no secret that more people are stepping away from their 9-5 to take the leap to start their own business. With so many companies outsourcing functions, freelance gigs have become more popular than ever before, so starting a business is the answer for many looking to make a career change. Technological advances and the ongoing uncertainty of the economy and job security are empowering more people to take their work-life literally into their own hands. You too can use your knowledge, expertise, and experience to offer needed business solutions to small and large organizations. After all, every business owner has a problem that needs a solution, and outsourcing can save them time and money, but is starting your own business right for you?

We’re sharing some insight so you can determine if starting your own business is for you. Here are five easy tips for success for anyone considering starting a business.

1. Develop a Committed Mindset

It's a myth that starting your own business, means that you work less. This is not true, but what is true is that flexibility and incorporating a level of automation is necessary so you don't end up working tons of hours on unimportant tasks. Flexibility is important to everyone. As an entrepreneur, setting a schedule that works for you is essential to maintaining a committed mindset. It's easy to get bogged down with color schemes and cute taglines for your business.

With starting your own business comes not only flexibility in schedule, but also flexibility in who you want to work with. For some, flexibility can be a disadvantage because self-discipline is the cornerstone of working when and where you want. You have to identify client expectations early, consider the scope of the project, and create a flexible schedule that works best for you. Establish if your client’s expectations are a good fit for how you work and consider your availability to make sure you’re able to deliver on your promise to successfully deliver. 

2. Consider Lifestyle Fit

Starting your own business can be a good match for the right person. Are your finances in order? Do you have money saved for your startup? Will you have any partners or investors? How will your lifestyle be impacted if it takes a few months for you to break even in the beginning? Learning to do less with more while keeping you eye on your expenses is key. We walk you through these and more in the Start Your Own Business Checklist.

Perhaps you find it easy working solely on your computer or tablet, without needing constant face-to-face interaction. Or you might have responsibilities at home that require you to be near by, such as needing to work around your children’s schedule, or if you take care of elderly parents. Or perhaps you live in a remote place where working in an office for someone else requires a long commute. In this case, working a 9-5 schedule may not be suitable and creating your startup might work best for your lifestyle.

3. Identify Your Niche Skill

The secret sauce to success of starting your business is often  in your niche. Everyone has something they do well. Think about questions people often ask you. Do you have experience such as graphic design, editing, programming, marketing, or writing? Is there something you do where you are an expert that you enjoy doing? These are the questions you should ask yourself and answer before deciding to start your own business or start freelancing.

Graphic design, editing, writing, programming, business coach, website builder, virtual assistant, etc; these are the very types of services that people outsource. The good news is that most of these services are offered online and are highly marketable.

Start putting your portfolio together now and create a linked bio. For example, Koji has wonderfully dynamic templates for you to use to quickly share with potential clients to highlight your work. If you are the solution to a business problem, it further gives you the opportunity to turn your experience and skill into a path to flexible-work freedom and success as an entrepreneur.

4. Use Caution Choosing Clients

Everyone has worked for or with someone they did not particularly like at some point in life. Perhaps it is a difference of opinion, the person is difficult to work with, or you end up doing all of the work, alone.  As an employee you cannot choose who you work with or choose your reporting manager. As an entrepreneur, you have the option to select your clients. You are able to review their offer or contract and make the decision to work with them or not. 

However, I will caution you to be aware of the bargain hunters. If you provide a concrete solution that provides value, don't sell yourself short and start discounting or give "one-time" pricing because a client said they can get the same thing somewhere else. Remember, there is only one of you! They cannot get you anywhere else so know your value!

You also have the opportunity to make your services available to clients and charge according to the project. Therefore it is not only flexibility-work freedom that you have, but also the chance to charge based on your knowledge and expertise. Once you’ve identified your niche you can then work to scale your business so that you get repeat business, maintain good relationships with your clients, and automate to grow your business.

5. Take Advantage of Your Options

Yes, you have options! Just because you decide to start your own business does not mean that you have to quit your regular job, as long as there is no work policy or non-compete clause in place. Some people with new startups still work full-time while earning additional income on the side. There are also many who work a few part-time jobs while running their own business as a paralegal, software developer, content creator, blogger, or digital marketing, etc. Starting your own business is a flexible way you can earn more income, which could eventually grow into your only income!

No Time Like the Present

As with any new venture, there are challenges to starting your own business. Success depends on your work ethic, mindset, ability to learn new skills, and commitment to making it work for you.

Do you want to learn more about starting a business? Check out our Entrepreneur Series, which teaches you the A to Z of becoming a thriving entrepreneur.
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