A Checklist To Consider Before Starting Your Small Business.
Your chance of success for your small business will be better
if you know and understand the problems you might run in to.
It’s best to work out as many of them as you can before you
start. Here's some questions to help you with what you need to
know and do. Consider each question and if the answer is NO,
then you need to work on that area.
Are you a person who can get a
Small business going ..& run it successfully?
Why do you want your own small business?
. Will you work long hours not knowing how much $$ you'll
end up with?
. Have you worked for someone else as a foreman or manager?
. Have you had any small business training in school?
Have you saved any money?
. How much do you need to start your small business?
. Determined how much cash you can put into a business?
. Do you know how much credit you can get from your suppliers for your small business?
. Do you know how or where you can borrow the rest you need to start your small business?
. Have you figured out what net/loss income per year you can expect from the business?
. Are you willing to re-invest your salary/business profits?
. Have you talked to a bank about your plans?
Do you know..
. the good and bad points about running your own small business or partnership or how about incorporating?
. Have you talked to a lawyer or an accountant about a partner?
. Why do you like to buy from some sales people while others turn you off?
. If you need to, do you know where to look to hire
someone for your business that would complement your skills?
. Do you know what kind of employees you need?
. Do you have a plan for training your employees?
. Have you decided to extend credit to your customers?
. Can you tell a good credit risk from a bad one?
. Could you make more money working for someone else?
Does your family agree..
. with a plan to start a business of your own?
. Do you have a business plan for yourself and your employees?
. Do other businesses like yours seem to be doing well?
. Do you know what kind of people will buy what you plan to sell?
. Do they need a business like yours?
. Have you thought about opening a different kind of business or another location?
. Have you found a good building for your small business?
. Will you have sufficient room to expand when necessary?
. Can you fix the building the way you want without spending too much money?
. Is there good access for parking spaces, bus stops, etc.?
. Have you had a lawyer check the lease and zoning requirements?
. Do you know the equipment and supplies you need and how much they’ll cost?
. Can you save some money by buying second-hand equipment?
. Would second-hand equipment work for your situation?
. Do you know what your expenses will be for:
rent, wages, insurance, utilities, advertising, interest.?
. Do you know which expenses are direct,indirect,or fixed?
. Do you know how much your overhead costs will be?
. Do you know how much your selling expenses will be?
. Are you aware of the major risks associated with your product? Service? Business?
. Can you minimize any of these major risks?
. Are there major risks beyond your control?
. Can these risks bankrupt you?
How much stock will you need..
. to open your business or store?
. Found suppliers who will sell a competitive price?
. Compared prices & credit terms of several suppliers?
. A system to keep track of income & expenses, accounts
receivable & payables?
. System for tracking your inventory?
. System for payroll records and tax reports and payments?
. Do you know what financial statements you should prepare?
. An accountant for help with records & financial statements?
. Do you know what licenses and permits you need?
. Aware of the business laws that apply to you?
. Do you know a lawyer you can go to for advice or
help with legal papers?
Should you consider buying an existing business?
. Know the advantages and disadvantages of a business
someone else has started?
. Found out the real reason the owner wants to sell?
. Cost comparison of buying a business to cost of
starting a new business?
. Is the equipment/inventory up to date and in good condition?
. Will the owner of the building transfer the lease to you?
. Did you talk with other business owners to see what they
think of the business for sale?
. Have you talked with a lawyer about the existing business?
. Have you talked with the company's current suppliers?
. Have you decided on your advertising?
Newspapers, posters, television, radio, Internet, mail?
. Do you know where to get help with your ads?
. Watched what competition does to get people to buy?
. Pricing your products or service
. Do you know what you should charge for each item?
. Do you know what your competitors charge?
. Do you have a way to find out what your customers want?
. Does your tracking plan for inventory tell you when to re-order more and how much?
. Are you going to buy most of your stock from a few suppliers or several?
. Know the advantages/disadvantages of each supply method?
. Decided if you’ll have sales people or self-service?
. Know how to encourage customers to buy?
This has taken some serious thinking and by now you probably
found out that there are still quite a few things you need to know more about or that you should do something about.
Talk this over with family/friends and make sure you don't
hesitate to ask for help from people or professionals who can tell you what you need to know.
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