Starting a business is more than quitting your day job and putting together a website for your new project. It involves the law, your money, and your daily energy. When it comes to being your own boss, knowledge is power. The more you know, the more you can both protect and grow your business.
I’m not talking about the more you know about marketing or the more you know about your competition. I’m talking about the more you know about business itself. Here are three common business terms all self employed people need to understand.
Starting your own business can be empowering, as it allows long-held passions or skills to be pursued. Thanks to the growth of the gig economy, there are now many avenues available to establish your own freelance business. Here are a few ways you can realize your ambitions.
If you’re starting a business, you’ve probably defined your “target customer.” You know their age, gender, location and perhaps even their income and education levels. But demographics alone won’t give you a complete picture of who’s buying your products.
“Understand intimately who your customer is,” said TJ Parker, CEO and founder of PillPack, an online pharmacy and medication management service. “If you don’t know your customers, it’s hard to … communicate [your product’s] benefits so they react positively.”
So what else should you be learning about your customers, aside from basic demographics? Here are the top three things you should find out, and how to incorporate that information into your strategy.
When is the best time in life to start a business? There’s no “right” answer to this question, of course — every entrepreneur’s experience is different. But based on the seeming abundance of 20-something Silicon Valley startup founders, it’s easy to think that the younger you are, the better off your business will be.
By that same logic, it’s also easy to assume that entrepreneurs who are approaching retirement age may be too out-of-touch with current technology and culture to succeed in the business world. On the other hand, many founders who started their business after age 50 say their decades of experience have been their greatest advantage.
If you’re an older aspiring business owner, don’t assume you missed your chance at entrepreneurial success. Here’s why it pays to jump into the startup game later, and what you can do to make your business flourish.
There’s nothing quite like starting a business from scratch. It is one of the most rewarding — and challenging — things you can do.
After all, it requires putting everything on the line for an idea that may not resonate with the market, and there are plenty of potential missteps along the way. The risks are clear: Half of all businesses fail within the first five years, according to Gallup research.
To help you avoid that route, we have compiled five important tips to keep in mind when you do decide to start your own business.
I attended an entrepreneurship summit recently, where I was asked to help select and distribute an interesting award. Attendees were asked to write down something inspiring they learned at the summit and the best entry would win.
The majority of attendees entered the same mantra from an earlier speaker: Start before you’re ready. However, only one attendee went the extra mile and described what that principle meant to him. He applied the knowledge and was named the winner.
I was impressed by that because, of all the so-called entrepreneurs in the room, he was the real deal.
Thinking about this, I decided to look at my own entrepreneurship efforts (some successful and some not) to see how the “Start before you’re ready” mantra could apply to me. Here’s what I learned:
After his junior year at Brigham Young University, Nick Walter, now 25, landed a great summer internship in the Seattle office of Pariveda Solutions, a Dallas-based tech consulting firm. Though he enjoyed the work and liked his clients and colleagues, he felt stifled. Used to jeans and t-shirts, he didn’t like wearing khakis and polo shirts and most of all, he says, “I hated that I had to be at this office every day for X amount of time doing what they said I had to do.”
So instead of heading down the career track he’d always expected of himself—he’d envisioned the security of a steady paycheck and benefits—he decided to go to BYU part-time for the next two years, while hiring himself out as a consultant and developing his own apps for the iPhone including seven how-two apps he wrote with a friend. One of them, called simply Weight Lifting Videos, has helped net $1,200 a month.Then he stumbled on a more lucrative possibility.
Yes, Mark Zuckerberg started Facebook at 19. But Charles Flint launched IBM at 61.
While Hollywood may love the story of the college kid who starts a billion-dollar business out of his dorm room, that’s only one story. For many, life as an entrepreneur begins much later.
Consider: Legendary wedding-dress designer Vera Wang didn’t start designing clothes until she was 39. Home decorating goddess and business czar Martha Stewart didn’t get into home decorating until she was 35. And San Francisco-based angel investor and founder of business incubator 500 Startups Dave McClure didn’t invest in a single startup until he was 40. That’s all according to a pair of infographics, embedded below, created by startup organization Funders and Founders.
When it comes to launching a business, what a person may lack in youthful energy comes back multiplied in experience. Reid Hoffman started the ultra-popular career networking site LinkedIn when he was 36; Sam Walton started Wal-Mart when he was 44; and Joseph Campbell started Campbell Soup when he was 52.
Have a look at the two infographics below. Be inspired. And stop counting the grey hairs on your head.
We get it. You’re starting a new businesses and you’re strapped for cash. There are a million questions going through your head. We empathize with bootstrapping entrepreneurs and small-business owners everywhere, and today we explore meaningful ways that add up where your business can save money in the early phases. That said, every small-business owner and entrepreneur has a unique set of circumstances that pertains to their business, industry, strategy, and execution. Here we will outline some of the key choices, some obvious, some less obvious, on ways you and your small business can save money.
Where is your business located?
The cost of living cannot be ignored when you’re looking at starting a business. While the glamour of the big city lights and talented potential workforce might be appealing, it might not be the best place for you to start a business. The cost of creating a startup in San Francisco or New York versus a small town in the Midwest needs to be taken into consideration. Having lived in San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, and Madison, Wisconsin, it’s far easier to start a business in Madison, WI from a cost perspective.
A lot of people like to fool you and say that you’re not smart if you never went to college, but common sense rules over everything. That’s what I learned from selling crack. -Snoop Dogg
My name is Stephanie St.Claire, and I am an unfunded entrepreneur. I’ve been in business for 4 years, after engaging in my own personal and tenuous renaissance uh…divorce and rediscovering my Divine Core Purpose. In other words, I grew a pair of ladyballs and started living the life I always wanted to while making money doing it.
But there was a LOT to learn, and some of those things weren’t covered in Who Moved My Cheese. Throw these 4 rockstars into a blender, and you’ll have a composite sketch of me in the first three months of my business:
Glitter was literally shooting out of my eye sockets as I quit my PR firm job and started my own business. Full of optimism, living in New York City, and surrounded by a tribe of friends who were also launching businesses, art, and gigs, I felt it was the perfect time to make the bold move to entrepreneurship. I was now officially Living My Dream and Working For Myself which meant that I was In Charge of My Financial Destiny and Captain of My Promising Future.