30 Sep

There are a lot of good reasons to consider starting your company this year. You can do it. You don’t necessarily need a degree in business or finance to be successful. But keep reading—there are a few essentials for getting up and running that you won’t want to miss. 

1. A great business idea

If you’re kicking around a few ideas for your new company, or you think you have a concept but aren’t sure it will work, use these resources to help you think it through before you invest a ton of money and time.

2. A 30-day road-map to starting a business

If you have a great business idea, it’s time to get started! Use this free startup checklist and our guide to starting a business in 30 days to help you make sure you’ve covered all your bases. Can you really launch a company in a month? That depends on what type of business you’re starting. No matter what, you can make a ton of progress if you make it your priority for four to five weeks.

During this 3- day stretch, you’ll think about your business name, your legal structure, and more of the nuts and bolts of making thing official. This is also a great time to do market research, build your website, and figure out how you’ll manage your bookkeeping in the early days.

3. A business plan

If you’re not sure how to write a business plan, you aren’t alone—we talk with entrepreneurs and people who want to start a small business every day who feel this way.

There’s good news: you can do it, and it’s easier than you think.

4. Funding to get started

With your business plan finished, you may be heading out to present your business idea to investors to a bank. We know the funding part of your journey can be challenging, but don’t give up—many entrepreneurs end up making several attempts before getting funded. Check out our funding guide to help you get started.  

5. Milestones and goals

Down the road when your small business or startup company is up and running, you’ll have a whole new learning curve: becoming a smart small business manager.

That business plan you wrote will be a companion on this particular journey—you’ll be updating it regularly, and comparing it against how your company actually performed. Set some goals, create some forecasts—these milestones will help you keep your new business on track.

For now, however, just stay focused on the steps you’re taking to get started. An entrepreneur never stops learning, and with each new skill you take on, you’re better equipped for the next challenge.

One last bonus tip: Find a mentor or someone you trust who can be a sounding board as you make early decisions—don’t try to do it all alone.

We wish you a successful start to your small business or startup in 2019!

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