Starting out in Business

22 03 2008

So now you have had an opportunity to take a break from work and suddenly you say to yourself – I wish I could start in business. It could be you have been on holiday and saw something that triggered that itch again “Hey I could start a business like this back home!!” well here are a few pointers to guide you through the thinking and planning process.

Before you take the plunge ask yourself the following;

1. What problem am I solving?

If there is a problem which you have identified and think you can offer a solution chances are you have found a niche, chances are that you will get customers. If there is no problem solved ditch the idea or think more about it before plunging into the idea this will prevent many headaches and pitfalls ahead.

2.     Carry out a market research.

Do people actually need this service? If not, surely you will have problems in getting customers. Check out the competition, who else is doing it in the area? what will make you a better option than the rest? Are you going to be cheaper, or are you going to offer higher quality, better service? Just because that takeaway in the area is always busy does not necessarily guarantee you customers if you open another takeaway shop next door.  Can you deliver the same quality, at the same price, for how long?

3. Do your figurework thoroughly.

Work out the costs, expected revenue, do cashflows etc. If unable to do this ask for help. Its important to think beyond the first six months. Strategic plans at this stage are important. Budgets and forecasts are vital and they have to be as realistic as possible. Its very rare for a business to double revenue in the first three years! Remember failing to plan is planning to fail! Most small businesses fold up in the first three to five years and its mostly due to failure to plan.

4. Do not follow the E-Myth ( Just because you are the best builder does not mean you will run a successful construction company!) Are you getting yourself a business or are you just creating a job for yourself? Just because you have a degree in Mechanical Engineering or because you have umpteen years experience in a trade does not mean you will succeed in business for yourself!

For more ideas and further discussion on this topic or for help contact bamkuru!

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Mission Statement – PEST analysis

15 03 2008

A ‘mission statement’ of an organisation is a brief statement of its purpose. Companies sometimes use their mission statement as a punchline in their advertising campaigns but the intention of a genuine mission statement is to keep members and users aware of the organization’s purpose. 

The mission statement also often spells out the organisation’s intended activities and its values. This makes it easy to analyse its social contribution and its involvement in the political,and or economical arena. Thus a PEST  analysis can be carried out. 

PEST analysis stands for “Political, Economic, Social, and Technological analysis” and describes a framework of macroenvironmental factors used in environmental scanning. It is a part of the external analysis when doing market research and gives a certain overview of the different macroenvironmental factors that the company has to take into consideration. It is a useful strategic tool for understanding market growth or decline, business position, potential and direction for operations. (from wikipedia)

For smaller businesses this can be left to devolve with time and emanate from their activities with time, but it is not advisable. A good mission statement is a good tool to have in any business toolbox. If you need assistance with developing a mission statement or just someone to bounce ideas then feel free to contact bamkuru at – bamkuru-at-yahoo-dot-co-dot-uk