9 Steps To Starting a Business

1.  Be sure you have a good "why" statement when someone askes;

  1.  "Why would you ever want to take on the headache of your own business?"
  2. "Why, don't you make enough working for XYZ?"
  3. Why don't you invest in ____________ Stocks instead?"

You can add a dozen other WHY questions.  Make sure your why is enough when negativity and doubt creep in, whey you've been told no for the thousandth time in a week.  If your why isn't powerful enough, quitting will be a more powerful temptation.  

2.   Get council!!  Unless you are a rare breed, you don't know everything about running a business.  If you are an inventor, it is possible that you do not understand how to market the invention.  It is possible that you do not understand the legal aspects of patenting your product.  Surround yourself with as many people that are smart in different ways as you can.  This doesn't mean that they need to be on the payroll.  Many people will appreciate the fact that you thought to ask them for their input.  

3.  Financial planning.  Plan to not make money.  Pay bills - yes, but make money - NO, not for a while.  Your business will determine when you can start actually seeing returns on your investments.  

4.  Tell people, tell at least someone if you are a shy person, that you are starting your business.  Tell them all about what you want to do and how it will be good.  This will keep you honest and motivated.  No one wants to run into a friend in the grocery store that will ask how your business is doing only for you to say; "what business?"  You should not tell someone who will exploit your honesty with a competing business of their own or a family member who will only make you feel bad when you didn't achieve a benchmark.  Tell someone who you know genuinely cares about your success and who can cheer you on.  

5.  Establish the official nature of the business in writing and with the state you operate in.

6.  Open a bank account in your business name.

7.  Learn how to market yourself in the modern digital landscape OR, hire these services out. 

8.  Create a marketing budget.

9.  Burn the boats!  In 1519 Hernan Cortez, upon arriving in Veracruz to begin his great conquest, ordered his ships to be set ablaze.  He didn't do this until he and his men were on dry ground.  It is important that you realize that you should not burn your ship until you are a solid footing, not when you are five miles from shore in stormy seas.  That said; if you continue to depend on the current income or situation you are in, how will you learn to depend upon your own business and financial intelligence in your 'Great Conquest'?