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Five Crucial Questions to Ask Yourself Before Starting a Business
There may come a time in your career when you decide that you want to take more control of how you work and earn a living. But starting your own business is no easy feat.
It’ll require some inspiration – and a serious amount of perspiration. If you are giving this direction some thought, it’s paramount that you’re doing it for the right reasons. Luckily, we’ve compiled five of the most pressing questions you should ask yourself before embarking on your own enterprise.
What are my reasons?
It can often feel like there are a million reasons why you should start up your own business, but some are more applicable than others. Reasons such as lacking passion for your current job or dissatisfaction about hours/working conditions - while valid grievances - aren’t enough to justify breaking away and going it alone. Your motivation must be founded upon a solid rationale. Maybe you’ve accumulated enough experience in your given field and believe a strong client base will follow you. Or you’ve noticed an issue that customers experience and think you can provide the solution in a profitable way. Whatever it is, you must be ready for the challenge.
Do I have the skills?
A common pitfall for aspiring entrepreneurs is underestimating the difficulty of managing all the aspects of a new business simultaneously. It will involve many responsibilities outside of the general running of an operation. You’ll be charged with marketing your business, managing any staff you employ, co-ordinating how you best manage your time, dealing with finances and, ultimately, delivering a high-quality product or service that will bring new customers and retain existing ones. Your multi-tasking skills will be firmly put to the test for the first number of years, which will hold you in good stead over the lifetime of your business.
Am I up to the task?
This is a big one. Inevitably, if you’re not prepared to put in the long hours necessary for running a business or to know your chosen enterprise inside out, you’ll impair your chances of success. Starting a business is a huge task to take on. Not only will it take up a considerable amount of your time, it will require you to perform a range of roles from simple daily tasks to high-end managerial duties. You’ll need to have the motivation to muck in at every level of the business.
Can I get enough capital?
The financial side of a start-up can make or break your business – and it’s one that often defeats otherwise able entrepreneurs. Mapping out your budget well in advance is crucial. How much will you need to start off? What is a realistic goal to set where you become profitable? Generally, you will need more money to get going than you think, and it’ll take longer to see profit than you imagine. It may feel like a slog, but prepare accordingly and the hard work will pay dividends in the future.
Do I have a strong support base?
The start-up process will be hard, so it’s very important that you have people around you for support and encouragement. If you can, be open about your business to the closest people in your life. Should you hit a rough patch while establishing your business, your family and friends will be there to help. And they’ll also be there to celebrate the victories with you, however large or small they may be. They may often be the spark that keeps you motivated to achieve your dream of your own successful business.
Starting Your Own Business?
If you need advice on starting up your business venture, or are interested in our start-up business loans, make an appointment to speak to your AIB Business Customer Advisor today.
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