Starting a business can be daunting. Most people don’t like the pressure of being responsible for the success of a business. So they take the safe route; a job with financial security. Starting a business is definitely not for everybody.
Those who are capable of launching new businesses are sometimes scared of the details of getting a business off the ground. They delay their startup plans because of common business “myths.” Don’t fall into the following traps. These are some of the biggest misconceptions about starting your own business.
1. You need a complete business plan. No you don’t.
You can never be completely ready to start a business. Don’t blame your inaction on an incomplete business plan. You don’t need a complete forty page business plan to start a business. Unless you are into a life threatening business which mostly requires attention to every detail, just get on with it and learn as you grow. Most financial institutions also require some kind of document for due diligence purposes when you need a loan. If you don’t need a loan, don’t worry about that huge business plan.
If you are bootstrapping, don’t waste time putting together a comprehensive document you may not even use. Nothing is guaranteed in a startup. Things will change as you grow. What you need is blue print of your thoughts processes. A lean canvas can help you get your thoughts in a more orderly manner. It can also capture everything you need to think about to get started.
2. Starting a business comes with complete freedom.
In the words of David Ehrenberg, CEO of Early Growth Financial Services “The biggest lie is that running your own company allows you to set your own hours and gives you total freedom. In reality, I have virtually no control over my own hours or schedule. If you want to start your own business for freedom, think again.”
The freedom that comes with starting a business is the opportunity to get your own ideas implemented and the joy of watching your business take shape and solve real problems people have with time. Of course you have the freedom to change direction as you deem right but most your time will be taken up by meetings, appointments, events and everything else required to successfully run a new business. Being the founder doesn’t mean you can give everyone else the hard work to do whilst you watch them do all the work. You will be surprised at how much work you will have to do when you start your own business.
3. You need lots of money to get started. It’s a myth.
In the current age of abundance of free business resources, you can start a business with little or no money. You don’t need the help of an investor if you want to go solo. And you can successful without external funding. There are tons of free resources, tips and blog posts about bootstrapping you can use. Most successful businesses had surprisingly humble beginnings. Funding is not a guarantee for success. There are companies that spent millions but still failed. MailChimp, 37Signals and TechCrunch all bootstrapped their way to success. They are still in business and doing well.
4. Corporation tax is based on total income.
The Great Business Debate debunks this myth of business taxes perfectly..”Corporation tax is calculated based on the profit that businesses earn, not the total income they receive. That means they are taxed on the money they get after removing the costs of earning it.
Taking the example of a local corner shop, the owners would pay tax after taking into account the costs of things like buying more stock, paying for staff wages and rent on the premises.”
5. “I will attract lots of customers right from the beginning”. No you won’t.
Don’t fall into the hockey stick growth syndrome. Plan for the worse but expect the very best. Most businesses fail because they’ve made plans based on exponential growth right from the beginning. Success, growth, returning clients— all of these things develop gradually if you concentrate on the right marketing strategies.
“If you build it, they will come.” Sure, it’s a great quote (from a great movie), but I think it’s also dangerous. You shouldn’t expect customers to flock to your business, even if you think you have the greatest idea in the world. It’s crucial that you adequately plan and leave some budget for marketing — just in case a few people have a hard time finding you.” says Nicolas Gremion of Free-ebooks.net.