Business 101: First Steps to Take To Run Your Own Business
The vast majority of us need to work to live. We need to generate an income that can support not only ourselves but also any dependents that we may have. So, it’s not all too surprising that the majority of us will think long and hard about the kind of work we want to do.
At the end of the day, the average working person will spend eight hours a day, five days a week working, so you need to make sure that it’s something that makes you happy and suits your lifestyle. There are countless jobs out there, but nowadays, increasing numbers of people are considering starting up their own businesses.
Here are some steps that will help you to determine whether this is something you should consider, as well as how to get started on the right foot if you do decide to pursue this path.
Is Running a Business Right for You?
First, you need to determine whether running a business is genuinely the right step for you to take. Sure, there are big benefits that come hand in hand with running your own business. This is what makes it so appealing. You get to be your own boss.
You work for yourself and keep your own profits, rather than generating profits for someone else. You’ll be able to choose what you sell. You choose your own branding. You decide where you’re based. Ultimately, you’ll create a team who will basically run the business for you, allowing you to step back, enjoy your free time and generate profits in the process.
However, it is important to remember just how much hard work it takes to reach this point. When you run a business, you are responsible for its progression and development. You are responsible for your staff. You are responsible for everything. If the business fails, you are the one who will deal with the financial consequences. With great reward can come risk.
Perhaps the most common mode of work that the majority of people engage with is being an employee. This involves working for a specific company. You will have a working contract that commits you to specific working arrangements, which can include set working times and days, or working from a specific location.
While you will be limited in what you do when you’re employed (as you have to follow rules and directions from managers or business owners) there are perks that come with this mode of working. You’ll gain job security. While also getting benefits such as annual leave, sick pay, parental leave, compassionate leave, and more. You can also benefit from training.
An option that lies between running your own business or being employed is being self-employed. When you are self-employed you manage your own work. You will create a base of clients for who you provide services on a contracted basis.
You choose who you work with, your rate of pay, what hours you work, where you work, and more. In short, you gain a lot more control over your work. However, you do not gain the benefits that you do from employment, such as annual leave and sick pay.
Setting Up Your Own Business
If you do decide to set up your own business, this is great news. This could be your first step on a long journey to success. But what should you do to get started in the right direction? Here are some pieces of advice that can help to guide you along the way.
Determine What You’ll Sell
Every business needs to sell something, whether that’s products or services. You need to decide what you want to sell in order to get your business up and running. Some people will head into this journey with a good idea of what they want to sell, some will take some time to settle on a single idea. Either way, you’re going to need to take time to conduct market research and ensure that there’s demand for what you want to offer. You can weigh up the competition, pricing, gaps in the market, and more.
Registering Your Business
Next, you need to register your business. This involves making your business official. There are benefits that come hand in hand with this process.
Not only can you engage with copyright and trademark, ensuring nobody can take your ideas, but you can make yourself an official presence, giving customers confidence in buying from you. Registering your company with Companies House can also mean that your personal assets and professional assets are separated.
Developing Your Products or Services
Next, you need to make sure that your products and services are their best. The product or service development process will help you to make sure they are of the best quality. This tends to be a long, back and forth process that
If you are selling products, you’re going to need to take time to put a manufacturing process in place. The majority of businesses outsource this, to begin with, as it helps to reduce initial outlays in products that may not ultimately sell.
By outsourcing, you benefit from other companies’ machinery, staff, and warehousing space. You may also want to consider logistics management at this point to ensure that everything can be made and stored properly in the lead-up to order fulfillment.
Branding is also extremely important. By branding your products and services, you help customers to differentiate themselves from the competition. This can help to give you a platform to build brand awareness, maximize brand loyalty, and generally make a name for yourself.
Most small businesses tend to outsource work when it comes to this area. Whether you have an idea for a brand yourself and simply need graphic designers and copywriters to bring it to life, or whether you need an agency to help you create an entire brand.
Of course, this isn’t where your journey will end. But these are the initial steps you should be taking when it comes to setting up your own company. Hopefully, some of the information above will serve as good guidance!