Posts Tagged ‘StartUp’

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Top 5 Tips For A Small Business Start-Up

Copyright (c) 2009 Dr Mark Yates

Economists are gracing our TV screens and newspapers proclaiming that the current economic downturn has finally bottomed out, and that we are about to turn the corner of the current credit crunch.

Irrespective of this opinion, in times of business hardship a great many opportunities for existing and aspiring business entrepreneurs manifest. The opportunity has never been greater for a small business start-up to grow exponentially.

Top 5 Tips For A Small Business Start-Up #1- Research Your Market

Business research has never been easier. Nowadays you can conduct most of your market and competitor research from the comfort of your own home or office computer. Online search engines are your best friends and although I advise caution as to complete accuracy of information, they do offer you a valuable insight.

Conduct a small business review. Identify your competitors and then use Google and other search engines to identify your competitors marketing campaigns and how much they are investing in targeting their online customers. Although online marketing doesn't include conventional marketing, it does offer a fantastic insight into your competitors business modus operandi.

Top 5 Tips For A Small Business Start-Up #2- Formulate A Strategic Business Growth Plan

Don't confuse a strategic business growth plan with a conventional business plan. A conventional business plan is generally required when you are looking for some kind of business finance, i.e. a bank loan or external investment. In reality most business owners park their business plan in a dusty cupboard never to be seen again after they have secured their finance. A strategic business growth plan is a much more pro-active working document that should form the foundation of your business growth. The initial foundation stone of this plan is a small business review ideally produced by a proven business growth consultant. This small business review can usually be produced quickly without spending a small fortune.

It should by definition include how you intend generating business, how you will take a share of your competitors business, how much you intend to turnover weekly, monthly and annually, how much your gross and net profits will be. It should also include financial forecasts and profit and loss data.

Two of the most critical issues to address when working with your strategic business growth plan are that;

1. The plan should include key performance indicators or KPI's as they are known in the business world.

2. The plan should be discussed and analysed by the MD or business owner weekly, followed up by a much more in-depth discussion which should take place every month with the MD, owner, directors, partners, shareholders, investors and senior managers to ensure the KPI's are being met.

On the basis that very few Small Business Start-Up will have such a corporate hierarchy, you should rely on external or outsourced business support partners to assist. (See top tips for a small business start-up #3 for further information on the right business partners.)

Top 5 Tips For A Small Business Start-Up #3- Find The Right Business Partners

A small business start-up generally lacks the expertise and resources that a medium or large business usually maintains. This means that for the managing director owner of a small business start-up, he or she occupies the loneliest position in the entire business world. It is for this reason that I advise retaining the right business partners. Initially you should appoint a proven business consultant, don't be confused into thinking this business consultant has to specialise in your particular type of business. Although there are a few business consultants who do specialise in one particular type of business, a very high percentage of business consultants are classed as business generalists.

Obviously if your research identifies a business consultant who specialises in your industry, then that's a bonus. However I advise that it is more important to appoint a proven business growth specialist as the first of your right business partners. If you appoint a proven growth specialist then he or she will have extensive contacts who can step in and out of your business as and when required without you having to pay full time salaries and executive benefit packages. Your business consultant will want to produce a small business package and a small business guide designed to encourage other business heavy weights to join your business on a part time retainer basis. Investing the time and money to produce this small business package and small business guide will provide far more value than cost.

Effectively your right business partners will be your very own part time low cost board of directors, an asset that many small business start-ups fail to capitalise on.

Top 5 Tips For A Small Business Start-Up #4- Never Step In The Ring Unless You Can Win

Never step in the ring unless you can win is based on the premise of having adequate financial resources. If you enter the business arena as a small business start-up without sufficient funds to get you through the first 12 to 18 months, you will seriously struggle to achieve business success and long term business sustainability. This is one of the main reasons why such a very high percentage of UK small businesses fail within the first 12 months. Appointing your right business partner i.e. a business growth consultant should bring an external source of financial expertise into your business on an as and when required contractual basis. Cash flow is key to any small business start-up for achieving good annual turnover and great profit margins.

Top 5 Tips For A Small Business Start-Up #5- Attack The Market

You've formed your own small business start-up, appointed your right business partners now you need to attack the market. Proactive business thinking will always lead to greater annual turnover and a healthy profit ratio. When I say attack the market, I am not being melodramatic. Business, real business is a war, and most wars are won before a battle commences. Being reactive in business will not win the war. Reactive business owners are destined to a live of mediocre business gains.

I only advocate attacking the market when you have integrated the first 4 of the top 5 tips for a small business start-up.

Implementing these top 5 tips for a small business start-up will give you a definitive edge over your counterparts who are also starting their own new business.

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Entrepreneurship: New Company Start-Up and Revitalisation of Old Ones

The practice of entrepreneurship often takes place when individuals with a keen eye for markets spot an as yet unexplored avenue of opportunity. There is no doubting the difficulty of such undertakings and a vast majority of new businesses fail, however, if your <a rel="nofollow" onclick="javascript:_gaq.push(['_trackPageview', '/outgoing/article_exit_link']);" href="http://www.thecompanyshop.ie/">Company formation</a> plan is intelligently constructed then there will be a higher chance of a favourable outcome. In 1950, the economist Joseph Schumpeter defined an entrepreneur as a person who is willing and able to convert a new idea or invention into a successful innovation. And above all enthusiasm for the venture is ultimately needed.

Although failure renders the entrepreneur vulnerable to many dangers, the advantages of success are manifold. Most obviously there will be enormous personal financial gain, but also the innovation will create jobs for others, boosting your country's economy. If the entrepreneur is entering into an already established market the venture will create healthy competition, thus encouraging higher product quality.

Up and coming entrepreneurs from the National College of Ireland have won the title of being the winner of the Newstalk 106-108fm Student Enterprise Competition. The winners managed to beat off opponent finalists from the Institute of Technology Carlow, Dundalk Institute of Technology, and Cork Institute of Technology. On congratulating the winning team, Denis O'Brien said, “Their hard work demonstrates what the competition is all about – fostering a spirit of enterprise among students by encouraging teamwork and solution-driven approaches to business challenges.” The winning team and their coach, Rosalind Beere, get to travel to the Caribbean this summer to shadow decision makers in Digicel's operations. Digicel being the Caribbean's fastest growing telecommunications operator and a new entrant in the Central American Market.

But entrepreneurship does not solely apply to brand new ventures, it can also be employed to revitalise mature organisations. Old companies who have found their services decrease in popularity may find it advantageous to recruit new and inventive thinkers to refresh their products and/or services, and in turn give the company a new lease of life.

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Women’s Perspectives Changing Business – Startup, Entrepreneurship

I just finished reading an article written by a good friend of mine who coaches companies and their employees to better performance. In this particular article, he was discussing women in business and the different set of attributes they bring into the workplace. And it got me to thinking.

For a long time, women in competitive careers were led to believe (and many times rightly so) that they had to "play a man's game" in order to progress and succeed in business. And though for years, women have been successful in business playing by "man-rules", it's absolutely not necessary, nor good advice for today's success.

What we now know of course, is that men and women may have different perspectives and approaches to business. But either can be successful in the entrepreneurial arena without giving up or giving over their own unique abilities.

Men and women have various attributes in common that are of benefit in the corporate realm, however, women are at their unquestionable best when we use the characteristics and attributes that are unique to us. And, employing those attributes to our own enterprises can make a good business an absolutely phenomenal success. Examples of the unique perspectives of female entrepreneurs can be found in niche markets such as catering, personal shopping or commercial construction cleanup just to name a few.

For those of you women who are about to delve into the world of entrepreneurship and are considering the type of business enterprise that you want to develop, here are some thoughts:

First, and most important for both women and men, is do what you love. There is something in you, something you're truly passionate about. Find a way to turn that passion into a business.

I've no doubt that you have probably heard that advice before, it's certainly not new. But there are several reasons that it is important. One, when you're involved in doing something you truly love, your passion is one of your greatest assets in driving your business. When you interact with others about the focus of your passion, you're animated, interesting and convincing in ways that would take much more time to practice and develop otherwise.

Passion causes you to be much more motivated, in fact you become what could be called "ultra" motivated. This is key, especially during the period before the money starts rolling in. For you to work an 8-hour day after you've already worked an 8-hour day for someone else (something all women know a little bit about), you have to be highly motivated. While you're building your business (and most people start businesses while they're still earning their grocery money from an outside employer), you have to have a powerful reason that causes you stay up working until 3:00AM, when you have to be up at 6:00AM to go to your "day job".

Another reason for developing your business from your passion is that whatever it is you're passionate about, more than likely you're an expert on. You've been reading and reviewing information on the subject for years. You've taken trips, visited sites, and participated in activities or events having to do with the object of your passion. You've already become involved in or developed some type of "network" (and ladies, we all know how to network) of other like-minded individuals who are as interested and passionate about your interest as you are. These are all excellent resources for you and for your clientele as you establish your business. It also greatly shortens or eliminates any learning curve relative to your business product or service knowledge to free you to concentrate on building the business itself.

In addition to pursuing your passion, another idea to keep in mind is that in the beginning, as you brainstorm ideas for your business development, let the sky be the limit. Use your wildest imagination to explore ideas and options. Don't begin the process of developing your enterprise by making a laundrylist of all of the reasons that you can't do this. Find absolutely as many reasons as possible to demonstrate why you can!

Last, and this is very important, be very selective about listening to the advice of friends and relatives. While they ultimately mean well (at least most of the time), the people around you are used to you and your life as it is. And, they're comfortable with that. Whenever you contemplate change, especially the types of changes brought about through successful business ownership, people can get uncomfortable. And when people are forced out of their comfort zone, they will fight tooth and nail to get back to it. If that means discouraging you in the process, then so be it, too bad for you.

Don't fall prey to the fears and negativity of others. If you can't seem to be around positive and encouraging people, find a new group of people to be around. And, if that's not possible, then be your own best friend. Solitude is much sweeter than failure at the hands of selfish people.

Be encouraged by your history. For hundreds, even thousands of years, women have been successful entrepreneurs. Our unique mindset, viewpoints, attitudes and skills as women have all contributed to our successes in business. Let that be your legacy to a new generation, and bring your own bit of spice and flavor to the business table.

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Free Internet Business Startup to Get Ready for the Next Dotcom Wave

You Can Make Money Online for Free with this Zero Cost Business Model

Yes that is right you can have a viable, profitable and legitimate online business set up and running for nothing - all you will need however is a computer and internet connection - so make sure that your online business income generating capability is ready for the next dotcom wave.

Whilst there are many tempting online money making programs on the internet they often don't live up to their expectations and promises.

This could be because the quality of the particular program is not up to scratch or simply that the user has not applied all the techniques through lack of motivation or competence.

It is often a case of the user expecting the package (whilst lying on the computer's hard drive) to miraculously generate income on auto pilot while he sleeps. Despite the fact that this is precisely what a lot of these programs offer, sadly you do actually have to do something to give the 'secret techniques' a remote chance of really working in the way they were intended to.

So if you are one of the many disappointed recipients of one of the 'instant wealth' packages do not get too despondent as you can still make a decent income online - in fact you can make anywhere between $0 and $1,000,000 online every month.

Furthermore and according to Forrester Research, online sales reached a staggering $172 billion in 2005 and they predict this will rise to $329 billion by 2010 - so make sure you are set up to get a share of this enormous online wealth.

So bearing in mind what has been said above, you should by now be convinced that starting your own legitimate online business deserves more scrutiny.

The following are the benefits that you will derive from embarking on this free online business model;


Online Earning Potential

There is no limit to the amount of money you can make online - it really only depends on how much drive you have and the amount of effort you are willing to put into it.

Just remember that, contrary to the auto pilot riches programs, this is not an instant wealth strategy but will reward those with a medium to long term vision

Financial Risk

The risk is almost zero as this type of internet business can be started from home as a full time or part time venture.

You can therefore test the waters before giving up your job or doing anything drastic.

Startup capital will be almost nothing.

Overheads

This business can be run from home on your own so there will be no rent or salaries to pay or other fixed overhead.

Monthly Expenses

Web Hosting = $0
Domain Name = $0
Data Transfer = $0
Stock = You should not need stock to sell

The only real cost will be for your internet connection and your computer.

Hours of Work

As an internet business is always online you can choose your own hours - you can work part time (after work) or treat it as a full time job.

Obviously the more effective and efficient your working input is, the more successful your business will be.


Often when things sound too good to be true they generally are, but in this case this internet business model, whilst not an instant wealth creator, is a viable and legitimate online business opportunity that can be setup and run for next to nothing.

So get prepared for the next dotcom wave and ensure that you have the tools to start your own profitable & legitimate online business for free »
[http://www.internetbusiness.co.za/online-business-startup.htm]


Mark Bellinger, a university graduate, is a successful businessman and entrepreneur exploring legitimate and lucrative internet opportunities and innovative ways to make money online

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