So you wanna be an Entrepreneur? You have a great idea and so do all your friends and family. Before you quit the day job, ask yourself six questions:
1) Is this your passion? Aside from visions of greenbacks popping from each pocket, is this product or service or industry interest you? There will be bumps in the road, lots of adversity, frustration, learning curve issues and more. If you have the requisite fire in the belly — that special passion — then you will have a better chance to be resilient and drive ahead!
2) Have you thoroughly researched the industry or marketplace you seek to enter, understand the trends, the demographics of the clientele, technological impacts, whether other markets or the economy impact your product or service, and who are your competitors? Do you have an idea you can patent and claim a monopoly for a period of years, or just building a better mousetrap?
3) Do you have the mindset and the skillset for this business? Mindset focuses on such things as the ability to find solutions to problems, overcome obstacles, lead others to create the work ethic and culture of your business. Skill set is the aptitude, the know-how, technical and people skills to accomplish the work needed for the new business?
4) Do you have sufficient capital to not only start the business but also carry it until it starts producing income? One of the most important aspects of starting a business is to make sure you will enough financial resources to keep the business afloat until it (hopefully) takes off. You should conduct a complete financial analysis of all debt and assets, including liquid assets you can obtain if needed for a cash infusion. You should also do a financial worksheet on everything you will need to start and run the business, from pens to computers, tables to chairs, advertising to insurance to websites and marketing and conferences and organizational dues – everything, and then understand the time lag between the sale and the payment and, axiomatically, the net revenue.
5) What are your potential liabilities. Does your product or service create a potential danger to the employee or to the client or other end user. Think through the parade of horribles and determine whether you have sufficient insurance to protect yourself, or whether you need to create an entity that might shield you from personal liability. Understand the legal ramifications from permits to health and safety standards and more.