I’ve had a number of people who have decided, for whatever reason, to start their own business and have come to me seeking advice on what they should do, what they need to do, and how they go about setting up the business. These people, I often say, are the ones that are the smart ones because they’re getting the advice at the beginning rather than getting the advice later and/or realising later on that they have a major problem and from a bookkeeping perspective it becomes for us what we refer to as a ‘rescue job’.
My top three pieces of advice:
1. Do some business planning. Whether that be a full plan or whether that be just some basic steps, do something. Don’t just decide that tomorrow I’m going to start being a window cleaner or a house cleaner or a plumber because I know how to be one of those, you have to make sure that this business is going to stack up and not fall over. How do you get clients, how do you finance it, how do you pay for your expenses?
2. Make sure you keep records of everything whether that be client records or what you’ve done for clients your financial records, your marketing records of your efforts and any other records you feel relevant all of these are going to be critical and useful down the track.
3. Have some guts to make some tough decisions. Many times I’ve had to make some tough decisions to get rid of clients to take action against clients that I really didn’t want to and also to fire staff. They’re not easy calls but as the business owner they are ones you need to make. If you don’t have the guts to make those decisions delegate them to someone who does.
So they’re probably my three biggest generic tips that I can give anyone who is looking at starting up a business. And enjoy the ride!