It’s a new year and I am sure that many of us have great ideas for the year especially those with small businesses.
It’s so surprising to see that many young fresh graduates are going for small businesses either due to the lack of jobs in Nigeria or the crave to be their own bosses. Surprisingly, in as much as most of us get it right, a few others get it wrong as they never considered the factors to building a profitable business.
What is profit? Should businesses have profit in mind? Yes, definitely, of course! If you intend to start a business without profit in mind-be it financial or non-financial, I guess you have to think again.
So, while many others are seizing these numerous opportunities, many others prefer to stay dormant with an incredible business idea while waiting for the skies to fall before working on their goldmines!
“If you don’t build your dream, someone else will hire you to help them build theirs.”
— Dhirubhai Ambani, founder, Reliance Industries
Here are a few tips and tricks which I feel can help you start a small business and grow it from scratch.
1.The key factor which should be considered at the start up of every business is the act of solemn dedication. We must learn to dedicate the works of our hands to God as the bible says, ‘he who does not work should not eat’ hence, it is important to remind God that we are not lazy and that He should bless the works of our hands.
2. During start-ups, you are not expecting any salaries so, try cutting cost to the barest minimum. Why hire an office space when you can convert a room or a corner in your house for business and why hire staff when you can stretch yourself and do the work alone. However, in a few cases, an extra hand is needed but then again, can you afford it?
3. Never despise humble beginnings. I have friends who have gone the extra mile as regards start-ups. Most of them have designed logos for their office entrance, made attractive complimentary cards, designed websites, made fliers, decorated their offices and so on. No one says that the afore mentioned is not good but can you afford it? Do not take a loan and splurge on all these when all you’ve got is just one steady customer whose payment cannot cover up these costs.
4. Do you need funding? Do not be discouraged if your first opportunity at funding doesn’t work as you thought it would. When a door closes, another opens and if it doesn’t, then the windows will.
5.Thomas Watson Sr., former CEO, IBM says “To be successful, you have to have your heart in your business, and your business in your heart.” This means that you should strive hard to make it work and bar the thoughts of quitting from your mind. Remember that almost everything has its risk, be it a new start-up, whether you’re getting married or even relocating to a new place. Never give your fears power over you.
6.When building a business, you must have at the back of your mind, your focus and goals. Sadly, many businesses lack that and this is the reason they collapse instead of grow. Factors like- how plausible is my business? Can I draw people’s interest to it?-should be at the back of your mind during start-up.
7.Focusing on quality instead of quantity will go a long way in boosting your business. You can never settle for less and same goes with your clients. Reducing the quality of services rendered can go a long way to destroying a great start up!
8. Advertise! There are limitless opportunities for advertisers and good news is, you do not have to throw in so much money to advertise. With the influx of blogs and social media, placing ads just got easier. Advertising on your Facebook page is totally free, same with your twitter page and blog (if you have one). Many people feel that blogs are for writers or people with passion for blogging alone and that’s not true. Blogs help you showcase your work more effectively. Are you a caterer? Do you make smattering accessories? What better way to advertise than to upload your creation on your blog and social media for visibility. According to Kruse Control, Blog content drives business growth. Businesses that blog regularly receive 77% more traffic and 97% more links to their site than those that don’t.
These are just a few tips from my research, I hope it helps!
New episodes of Black Mail and Silence comes up later today…