Sitting at home on the couch complaining about your worthless job? Is it time to step out on your own? I took the time to put together 10 tips to get you started.
1. Create a business model canvas: Research, design, and build one if you want your idea to work. Having a business model is one of the fundamental building blocks of any start-up and necessary to protect your idea, invention and proprietary information.
2. Know Your Market like the back of your hand: Who does your product appeal to and are they willing to buy? Do you appeal to several different customer segments in the market? Are you solving any major problems?
3. You need an idea – What is the idea?: Have a well designed plan that is executable. It is okay to think big (I prefer you think big), but how are you going to get there, one step at a time?
4. Research and list all Competitors and competitive advantages (Be honest with yourself too): Taking the time to do a competitive assessment can take time, however the time spent here will be well worth it – this is vital to your success. Also, while looking at your competitors define where you sit and how you are going to be different.
5. Financing and budgeting is critical: You need to know what you personally have to spend (Without hurting you and your family), how much you need, where are you going to locate the capital, and how is your idea going to scale – this means revenue streams and a smart business model.
6. Have an exit strategy in mind: Are you planning to sell your company and move onto the next thing? Are you going to pass it on to your kids? Or are you going to try and position your company for an IPO? Think about it.
7. Pick a course and run with it: Picking a course is always better than swimming around in a circle like an idiot.
8. Protect Yourself before you wreck yourself: How are you going to protect your idea, invention and your proprietary information. Can your idea or product benefit from a patent? If you have the right projection, it can give you an edge in the marketplace.
9. Process makes perfection: A company without the systems in place to fulfill what it’s selling or producing is preparing itself for a fall – believe me I’ve been there.
10. How is your company structured?: Think about whether you want to be a shared corporation or a limited liability company. Also, think about where your company is going to operate and where you want to incorporate. What are your future plans for the company? How do you intend to raise capital? What is the exit strategy?
Now have fun and get after it. What are you waiting for….a raise? You could be waiting forever.