3 Things Every First-Time Business Owner Needs to Think About
Starting your own business can be an exciting venture. You’ve been saving up for years to make this move, and it means quitting that dull day job to fully explore your passions. However, starting your own business is also a very difficult process, and it comes with tons of hidden costs and caveats. Here are three things first-time business owners need to consider when starting or taking over a new company.
- Prepare that Elevator Speech
When you’re first starting your business, you probably aren’t thinking about pitching your services. There are likely a million other things running through your head, which is understandable. But having a well-prepared pitch could come in handy.
When launching a new business, one great way to market your services is through word of mouth. An elevator speech or quick 60-second pitch will help you tell others about your business and what it offers. The most important thing to remember is to keep it short and sweet; they call it an elevator speech because you should be able to tell someone all that they need to know in the time it takes them to ride up or down an elevator. In order to be concise, edit your speech profusely and remove any industry jargon. You risk alienating a possible investor or consumer when you use words they won’t understand. You should also memorize your speech and tailor it to specific situations. You wouldn’t want to give an investor the same speech as you would to a consumer.
- Be Frugal
Don’t get caught up in the dream of running a wealthy and successful business. Those expensive sports cars and luxurious Fossil messenger bags will come with time, but right now, your bank account is all your business has for survival. Start by being frugal with your purchases and take more money risks later on.
Stability is not common in burgeoning new businesses. According to the Small Business Association, 30 percent of new businesses fail within the first two years and 50 percent fail within the first five. That number jumps up to 66 percent within the first 10, and a total of 25 percent only make the 15 year mark. The businesses that last the longest did not succeed by shelling out all of their money early on. They took risks, but at low costs. Be smart with your funds and consider finding cheap or free ways to accomplish your needs, at least until you’ve found more security financially.
- Focus on the Important Things
Most new business owners don’t focus on what actually matters. Oftentimes, new business owners will jump at every opportunity thrown their way, but it’s best to be strategic with your time and energy. Instead of saying yes to every business fair event, spend your time going to ones related to your field.
For example, healthcare and financial malpractice lawyer Howard Fensterman spent his career focusing on his specialized areas in order to perfect his craft. Instead of taking on too many assignments, some of which don’t even apply to his work, he focused on his interests and became a prominent New York lawyer.
You aren’t going to successfully run and manage a business by stretching yourself too thin. Without time devoted to what truly matters in the company, there won’t be a company with which to do anything. You can always hire subordinates and interns in the future to do these side tasks, but for now, focus on the vital operations of your business and ensure that those functions run smoothly.
Starting or owning a business for the first time can be daunting. However, when done correctly, it can also be very rewarding. In order to reap those rewards, remember to pitch your business well, save funds now, and focus on the vital operations.