- Kristin McNealus, DPT, MBA
Baby Steps are Better Than No Steps
If you like to read, and have looked toward the hundreds of books written about starting a business, I will direct you to two good ones:
The Art of the Start by Guy Kawasaki
The Lean Start Up by Eric Ries
You will see the common theme about how “doing” is the most important part of starting a business. If you sit down and try to think through all the aspects of your potential business, I promise you will get too overwhelmed to ever start. There is a little “ignorance is bliss” in this area. You will inevitably make mistakes along the way – and that is a good thing. These mistakes will teach you much more than your successes. So taking the time to plan through all the parts you can predict is likely a waste of time because your model will change by the time those parts are relevant. What you need to know is that you have a way to monetize your idea, and an audience to pay for it. Do you have that? Write it down. You could want to sell jewelry for cash and your audience is women age 16-60, and you’re going to start selling at the local Farmers Market then get a website to sell through the internet. Or maybe you want to tutor children in math, ages 6-18, and you’ll start with local schools, and later develop a way to tutor via Skype. Whatever your idea, have a clear understanding of what you want to do and LOVE it. You love expressing yourself through jewelry, or you pride yourself on making algebra clear and fun for children. Never lose sight of the reason you’re taking the leap.
Again, I was surprised that a program designed to teach you how to start a business did not spell out some of the initial steps. So now that you have a clear idea of what you want to do, and now you need a name. There are many resources out that to guide you on what makes a good business name… What I think is important is the ability to get a URL. So do some web searches to you if yourname.com is already taken, because it will be difficult to market your business if the website is a different address than the business name. Once you have decided on one that rolls of your tongue and get a good website name, you will need to register the name.