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Seven things you need to know before launching your own startup

Starting your own business has lots of benefits and presents its own challenges too.

Magda Knight
10th August 2016
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Here are seven things it’ll help you to consider before you start your journey.

You don’t have to give up the day job straight away

If you’re currently employed, in education or on a full-time course, you don’t have to give yourself an either/or ultimatum. You may find you’re initially better off starting a business as a side avenue, aiming to expand into doing it full-time once it’s established a solid foundation and proof of growth.

The boosted experience, skillset and financial support you’ll gain from current employment can all transfer into increased resources for your own business. They can work together. Speaking of which…

Your startup skills are also key employability skills

Innovation. Planning. Motivation. Leadership. These are just some of the skills that can potentially propel your startup to stardom. Employers view them as incredibly valuable skills to have, which is ideal, because you want your startup to have every chance of success. However it’s good to prepare for every eventuality – including a possible need to seek employed work in the future.

Evidence of a startup on your CV – and an awareness of your startup’s SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) – will serve you well in any future career changes. The skills you’ve honed from your startup will help to ensure that the time spent on your business was a wise investment, whatever the future brings.

Qualifications aren’t key

You don’t necessarily need academic qualifications to get a business off the ground. However, you can consider finding a relevant course to fill in any gaps in your skills and knowledge. There are all kinds of business-related courses available, along with marketing or bookkeeping and accountancy, to name a few.

Don’t wing it. Plan it.

Every startup needs a business plan. It explains how your business works. They say the devil’s in the details and a business plan covers a range of important details like costs for travel, staff, premises and anything you might need to turn your idea into a reality.

Ask yourself these VIQs (Very Important Questions)

  • How will you find customers straight away to get your business off the ground?
  • How will you form relationships with your customers to keep your business growing?
  • Will your business need equipment and transport?

It’s OK (in fact it’s good) to ask for help

One of the key challenges in setting up your own business is exploring support and funding options. Who can help your seed of an idea grow into something big and strong?

Research all avenues of financial support when coming up with your business plan. These can include Government funding, grants, awards and even ‘angel networks’, where you can pitch your startup idea to potential investors.

When you’re researching potential funding avenues, keep in mind what people are expecting in return for their funding so you can make the choices that best suit you.

Useful organisations and resources

GOV.UK

Their website has a section dedicated to starting up your own business.

JobCentre Plus

If you’re currently unemployed, JobCentre Plus has a range of resources to explore in terms of creating a startup.

Startup Britain

This site was created by a group of entrepreneurs who have been there, done that. They share information they think you’ll find useful, and they speak from experience.

Enterprise Nation

Become a member of Enterprise Nation and you’ll get a range of benefits including regular online masterclasses, networking opportunities, tools to grow your business and more.

FINAL THOUGHTS

There are considerable benefits to starting your own business. These include being your own boss, having a passion for your work, setting your own hours and setting the pace for seeding and growing your business. We hope these seven things to consider will set you on your path to breaking big steps down into smaller achievable ones. Good luck!

 

Student? School-leaver? Graduate? Seeking paid work or ready for some careers inspiration? Visit Plotr.co.uk for help with your next steps. Explore career tips, discover helpful employers/organisations, play the Game for career ideas and apply for apprenticeships, graduate schemes, work experience and full/part-time jobs in your area.

 

 

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