By Frida Owinga
Despite statistics and research stating that many businesses fail in the first 3 years, it is amazing how many people ignore that and still jump in the deep end. This is not to scare you from starting a business. It is to sensitize any one desiring to start to be cautious. If 75% of businesses started are not making it beyond their 3rd birthday, any one starting should be curious to know what they should avoid and what should they embrace. That is why I am passionate about helping more people start sustainable and successful businesses.
Following are some more tips for those who are considering starting one.
1. Know yourself and be very true to yourself.
What is your true motivational level? How much money are you willing to risk to be successful? Sure, we all want to make millions of shilling. But what are you willing to give up reaching that goal? How many hours a week will you work on an ongoing basis? How far out of your comfort zone are you willing to stretch? How far will your family stretch with you? To be successful, keep your business plans in line with your personal and family goals and resources. I have observed that many people fantasize about owning a business. And in their fantasy, there is lots of money, lots of free time, and very little work and sacrifice. That fantasy is the end of the story not the beginning.
2. Align your passion with an opportunity.
The old formula - find a need and fill it, still works. It will always work. The key to success is finding needs that you can fill, that you want to fill, and that will produce enough income to build a profitable business. Filling a need in an area you have no skills, strengths or interest can end up in drudgery.
3. Be sure there are enough people who are willing and able to buy what you want to sell.
One of the biggest mistakes start-ups make is to assume a lot of people will want to buy a particular product or service, because the entrepreneur likes the ideas or knows one or two people who want the product or service. To minimize your risk for loss, never assume there is a market. Research the idea. Talk to real potential prospects (who aren't family and friends) to find out if what you want to sell is something they'd be interested in buying, and if so, what they'd pay for the product or service. Most people who consult me because they want to quit normally cite lack of clients as their reason to quit. They say the business in not making enough money. When I ask how many clients do they have and how do they get them, they say through family and friends. Your business should be able to service more people than your family and friends if you are ever going to enjoy serious profit.
If you would like to attend a Passion Profit talk that will help you start a business, consider joining us on August 9th at Intercontinental Hotel. Registration is ongoing.