Thursday, October 18, 2007

How to Prepare for Your Start-Up Venture

When you awoke this morning, you found yourself buzzing with a fantastic idea for starting a new business and you hadn't a doubt in your mind that you could turn it into a huge success. But now what? All those great ideas floating around in your head and you're excited about making them happen, but at the moment you don't know where to begin. What is the first thing you should do as you contemplate your plan of action?

Start Writing Things Down!

The best suggestion in the early stages of your start-up venture would be to start writing things down. Even if the thoughts that occur to you seem insignificant at the moment, keep all your ideas in a simple notebook so that when you're ready to start moving forward, all your ideas are in one place and ready to go. It's amazing how quickly you can forget something that you thought would stay with you forever, so keeping notes on all your ideas is crucial. I can't count the times I didn't write something down immediately upon thinking of it and later couldn't remember it no matter how hard I tried. Now I make it a point to quickly jot down a few words on a notepad no matter when they occur. Even if it's just a few brief terms, those few words will jolt your memory and bring the idea to the forefront when you're ready to address it.

Preparing a Business Plan!

The next step would be to start preparation for a business plan. Whether you are applying for a loan, seeking investors or are presenting your idea to other business associates you need a well thought out plan. No one will take you seriously unless you have a strategy in place. Furthermore, your plan will not only be utilized for presentation purposes, but it will in addition make your idea a reality and propel you to the next stage of your venture. Seeing your plan in place provides the impetus needed to forge ahead.

How to Write a Business Plan!

At this point you are probably thinking that you have no idea where to start your plan or even what it should include. A good place to start is by constructing a summary of what your plan will contain. Create a table of contents that includes whatever you think a good plan should encompass. In all likelihood your plan will contain an objective, an executive summary, information about your product or service, marketing strategies, target market, competition, financial analysis, and profiles of key decision-makers. There may be other aspects that should be included in the plan but for now, the above mentioned are the primary ingredients for a good start up plan.

Seeking the Counsel of Professionals!

You might also consider seeking the counsel of an attorney to be sure your plan and business venture is legal. What a disappointment it would be if you put a lot of hard work into your plan and later found out that some important legality was overlooked, requiring you to start from scratch. In addition, unless you are prepared to construct spreadsheets and projections explaining how you intend to use your money and what you expect for the future, you might want to hire someone who knows all the financial ins and outs of a business.

Obviously, this is only a brief summation of what to do with your ideas for a start up venture, but it is a good place to start. Remember, words have power so use persuasive, influential language that demonstrates your enthusiasm, experience and knowledge regarding your idea. The words you choose to sell yourself could mean the difference between attracting the right investor or failing to be heard.

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