Plenty of people daydream about starting their own business, and for some, it is a lifelong ambition that they cannot shake. Taking the leap and starting a business can be a fantastic decision that brings professional and personal satisfaction as well as financial rewards, but it is also a risky venture. Running a successful business is so much more than having a great idea, and very few people have all the skills and knowledge they need when they start their business. Before you start your own business, you should consult with the following five people to ensure you have the best possible support and advice.
1. Your partner and family
It is important that your partner is on board with your plans, as starting a business is going to have a significant impact on your finances, your time, and the way your relationship works for the foreseeable future. You are likely to encounter stresses and pressures which are more intense than you are used to as an employee with a regular wage, and it could take time for this to improve. Without the emotional, practical, and possibly financial support of your partner, running your business will be significantly harder.
2. A legal professional
The practicalities and legalities of starting a business can be complicated, but it is essential that you make the right choices at this stage. A business can be set up as an S-Corp, Inc, or an LLC, which is the most popular route for start-ups. A legal professional will explain the differences between business structures and help you make the right choice for your plans. If your business is being funded by an investor, friend, or family member in exchange for equity in the company, the lawyer can also make sure this is all done formally to avoid future disputes.
3. An accounting firm
An accountant can guide you through your tax obligations and ensure that you take advantage of any tax benefits you may be entitled to. However, that is not all an accountant can do to help you. Hiring an expert accounting firm is a great move as accountants can help you to manage your cash flow, track your spending, maximize profits, hire employees, buy equipment, and finance expansion.
4. A business mentor
There are some business lessons that you only learn through experience, so it makes sense to pick the brains of someone who has already started their own business and has managed to make a success of it. Reach out to someone in a similar industry and see if they will meet you for a chat over a coffee and maybe even take a look at your business plan. If you can establish a relationship with a business mentor, they may be able to provide invaluable advice as your business progresses over the years.
5. Business funding expert
Very few entrepreneurs have the funds they need to finance their business, as most will seek funding via a bank, investor, or small business loan. To find out which is the right funding avenue for your venture, you should seek advice from a business funding expert or organization. A bank may be able to provide ongoing credit and financial advice.