If you feel driven to start a business, but you’re torn between several ideas, it can be tough to narrow down your options. It’s even worse if you don’t have any ideas at all, yet your entrepreneurial urge persists. You can discover the path toward a lucrative new business with these six essential steps from W.D. Strategies that will lead you in the right direction.
This is a guest contribution from writer David Dixon.
1. Assess Your Skills
The key to successful entrepreneurship starts with introspection. Before you can start making grand plans for your business, you need to look inward and consider what kind of business your talents are best suited to. Are you an adept chef? Do you have a flair for fashion? Your skills should be the foundation of your business. Start by taking an inventory of your strongest and most marketable skills.
2. Draw on Experience
Your skills and talents are just one part of the puzzle when you’re deciding what kind of business to start. You also likely have a wealth of experience that you bring to the table from your previous positions. Although this experience may not be in the same field you want to start your business in, you can draw on it by leveraging the lessons you’ve learned and applying the experience to your future enterprise.
If you’re dipping your toes into an industry without any knowledge whatsoever, you can also consider getting an education to help you hit the ground running. An information systems degree, for instance, can be a real asset in the technology industry. You don’t have to put your life on pause to earn a degree, as well. Consider online study options that you can do at your own time and pace.
The Importance of Being a Well-Rounded Professional
Whether your end goal is to start a new business or simply becoming successful within an already-existing enterprise, being a well-rounded professional is critical. In the Business Intelligence Podcast, W.D. founders Dr. Wei-Chung Wang and Joey DiGangi discuss what it means to be a well-rounded professional and how you can cultivate these skills for yourself.
3. Identify Resources
You’ll need a strong network of resources in order to successfully launch a business. This includes potential employees, a marketing team, a bookkeeper, and other people who can help your business thrive. You also need funding and a business plan to guide your efforts. Identifying these resources will help you gain a sense of direction for your business and start formulating your plans.
4. Designate Time
Too many new entrepreneurs dive headfirst into a new business and later realize that they don’t have the time to sustain it. This is a common mistake, and luckily it’s an avoidable one, too. You can be sure to allot enough time for your new business by looking at your schedule and carving out designated times to tend to business-related tasks. Unless there’s an emergency, keep your commitment to stay on track with your time.
5. Research the Market
One of the best ways to identify a lucrative business idea is to research the market you plan to operate in. What kind of demographics comprise the primary consumer population? What do these consumers want — new restaurants, baby boutiques, or delivery services, for example? You can find the answers to questions like these by conducting market research in your area.
6. Target Your Customers
According to statistics, 66% of consumers expect a business to understand what they need. Identifying customers’ needs can be an esoteric endeavor, but you’ll get closer to an answer when you can identify who your customers are. You should be able to construct a hypothetical customer profile based on the market research you’ve done, and this will help you start a business that’s marketable.
You Can Use Your Skills to Be an Entrepreneur
Delving into the world of entrepreneurship is brave and exciting. There are so many different kinds of businesses to choose from, and you need to know which one is the best. By assessing your skills and experience, you can leverage your resources and pin down a business concept that consumers will love.
Work with W.D. Strategies
If you’d like guidance during your next steps, you can always reach out to us for anything from business/career consulting or to tackle specific hurdles, like web design or financial planning.