Time is money, as so many people say. Being in a rush in business seems to be sewn into the fabric of how everything is done, which can mean a lack of focus when it is really needed. Starting a business is often touted as something that needs time, and lots of it! While this is in many ways true, if you are in the rare situation that you need to get trading right now, there are ways to get it done!
The notion of perfectionism is something every entrepreneur spends a lot of time on, and it can mean waiting for that perfect idea, or worrying that the administrative tasks are more complicated than they actually are. The basics can be done in a few hours, and the whole process could be done within a month!
First things first, you need to have capital behind you! The whole process will be a lot less stressful if you line everything up properly, which means a partial sense of preparation. If you have spent a long time agonizing over fine details, I assume you have spent a long time accumulating money! So, before you read on, get the building blocks in place i.e. finances! Based on the assumption you have the funds in place, here three rules to go by.
Rule 1: Don’t waste time
If you haven’t found the right business name, there’s no need to worry about that. To get the ball rolling, you can fill out a “doing business as” form, which takes minutes to do, and the business name doesn’t have to be the same as the company name. If you are trading solo, you can put it under your own name, and the company name can be changed later.
Just as long as the administrative duties are done, you can get started properly. As well as this, the EIN (Employer Identification Number), registering your trade name, getting your business license, a business bank account, and setting up a spreadsheet for your accounts can be done during the course of a few hours. In getting your business license, you will be asked to provide estimates of your annual gross receipts.
Just bear in mind that they are just estimates, and they can be changed later. It can be a stressful process to do the admin, but if you set aside a few hours, the basics can be done very quickly. The trick is to not worry about the business details during this period. The business plan and marketing can be done at a later point.
Rule 2: Find the right people
Once the basics have been put in place, you are officially a recognized business! So it’s now time to start acting like one! A lot of people work better when they are under pressure, and the fact that you have already invested money into getting the business off the ground will concentrate your efforts. Think about the website, the product, and the people.
The people will make the business, so make sure you are getting the right breed of workers on board. Assess what your needs are at this stage and hire people accordingly. It can be a big task to prioritize when you are looking for the right staff members while also setting up the right tools, such as a website.
The important thing at this stage is to build up your image, which means outsourcing to people who can get these tasks done. Your website is the first port-of-call, and there are many sites like CodeClerks.com who can build up the basic building blocks of a site. Be specific in your goals, and there will be little room for changes. If needs be, set out how you want your site laid out, and you are making the most of your time and money.
If you are happy with the quality of the staff you have outsourced, you can stick to this method, or you can now use your website to attract the right type of employees. Many job hunters go to business websites and see if they can get an idea if your company is the type they want to work for.
So make sure you lay it on the line, every aspect of your business personality, and linking it to a job advert that is so detailed in the requirements of your potential staff, there is less time looking through pointless CVs.
Rule 3: Aim high… or at the middle!
Finally, your goal is to get your product or service to as wide a range of customers as possible. Marketing is a delicate mistress, but depending on your product, aiming for a wide catchment area will give you a decent return in the early days. You can certainly focus your efforts on a target market later, but the first goal is to recoup the cost.
The Hard Middle is a concept that small businesses could grasp to keep their income steady, instead of it being a feast or famine. The difficult period is this one, the first 6 to 12 months. The goal is to aim as high as you can, but you can put all your eggs in one basket with this approach, so the Hard Middle becomes a way to keep the whole company earning a steady income. It may not be the big bucks you were hoping for, but it will certainly help while you are trying to make a name for yourself.
It doesn’t have to take a long time, but for many, it’s about taking that leap. If you have spent a long time worrying about getting started but the company name isn’t right or something as equally trivial, it may be the jolt you need.
The notion of faking it ‘til you make it is something that we all do in business. When we don’t know how to do something, or if we are trying to get the right people. But if you have a belief in your company and a goal, the minor tasks are just small fry in comparison to what you will achieve in the future.