Content provided by a guest contributor.
There is no shortage of advice on how to successfully start a business and begin your journey as an entrepreneur. However, most of the articles espousing this advice are identical or at least different iterations on the same theme. While this advice is helpful, it can give the impression that there is a certain "perfect" formula for starting a business. There is not. Each entrepreneur will experience different entrepreneurial journeys, and the advice that works for one entrepreneur may not work for another. Here are 10 uncommon tips for starting a business that you may not have heard before.
- Get rid of excuses: Excuses and fears of failure are often what prevent aspirational entrepreneurs from taking the plunge and starting a business. Instead of using your excuses as a shield, interrogate, address, and get rid of them.
- Be a sponge for information: Never stop learning from and listening to what others have to say. From friends and family to experts in your industry, each person has valuable insights to offer that will help you shape your business.
- Solve an existing problem: Often, the most successful businesses are the ones that offer a solution to an existing problem. It is your job as an entrepreneur to try and be that solution.
- Avoid overcomplicating things: When it comes to your business product (or service) and processes, it is better to keep things simple. Overcomplicated business processes may cause unnecessary expenses and overcomplicating your end-product may make it hard to sell.
- Be mindful of costs: Entrepreneurs often underestimate the total expenses associated with starting a business while overestimating the profits they will receive. Rather overestimate your costs and create a business budget that accounts for all your expenses.
- Imagine yourself at rock bottom: Although you may not like to think about it, when starting a business there is a high probability that you may come close to or experience bankruptcy. Unsuccessful business ideas are common. You need to prepare for the consequences of your business failing.
- Don't quit your day job yet: Quitting your current job before your business is trading profitably could place you in a financial crisis. If you keep your current job while building your business, you will ensure that you remain financially secure.
- Talk about your business: Sharing your business with the world can be an intimidating thing, especially if the business is new or you are introverted. However, talking about your business at networking events and in social interactions is one of the best ways for people to hear about your business.
- Know the relevant legal requirements: It is important to familiarise yourself with the laws that not only govern your chosen industry but also those that govern opening and operating a business in general. Failure to do so may have severe consequences.
- Balance knowledge and passion: Passion is an important driver when starting a business, but it shouldn't cloud all business decisions. Let your passion inspire you while knowledge and logic inform your decision-making.
As is the case with most advice articles on starting a business, following the tips in this article cannot guarantee you success (or a successful entrepreneurial journey). It can, however, better prepare you for this journey.