With millions of jobs lost, the foreclosure rate at the highest it’s ever been – and Economists projecting the worst recession since the Great Depression era – many are surprised to see so many Americans jumping at the opportunity to start their own businesses. If we’ve learned anything recently, it should be that even the most stable of industries and corporations are subject to failure. Americans are learning the hard way that no matter your education level or financial status – there are no guarantees. This has prompted thousands to return to the American dream of entrepreneurship and small business ownership. Now many are facing the uphill battle of starting a business while working a full time job! We will explore the best options, give ideas, business tips and all the latest news in start up businesses that you can create while working a full time job!
Here are several things to consider when brainstorming for business ideas:
1. Have an honest conversation: With yourself! Before you begin the process of piecing together your business plans you really need to sit down and list your strengths and weaknesses. Do you have the energy to see it through? Are you self-motivated? Do you have the technical know-how? A positive outlook? Where do you see yourself in 1,5 and 10 years? An estimated 75-80% of all businesses fail within the first year and much of the reason for that falls squarely on the shoulder of the person running the business!
2. Will you start an online or offline business?: To be clear, every business must establish an online presence. If you have a business and do not have an online presence consider yourself woefully behind the times. The Internet is one of the single best sources for free targeted advertising and exposure. Now just because you have an online presence does not mean that you have an online business. While you are brainstorming ideas, you should consider starting an online business. Are you a talented graphic designer? Skilled writer or editor? Savvy in retail? If so – an online business may be just the start up for you!
3. Is there a demand for the service or product you are supplying?: Market research is a vital aspect of the business brainstorming process. You may be the best paper mache airplane maker in all the world – but if there is no demand for your paper mache airplanes, then your business has failed before you could even start it. Use the Internet, poll your friends, and make note of new trends when considering a specific business idea. Make a list of your top three to five ideas and survey the people around you.
4. Can you compete?: The next step in market research is checking your competition. Your love of electronics coupled with a desire to start a brick and mortar electronic store does not mean that you can compete with retail giants like Best Buy, Wal-Mart and Circuit City. Be realistic about your market chances.
5. What do you have to get started?: While we will explore opportunities that do not require a great deal of start up monies, there will always be out of pocket expenses associated with starting a business. Take stock of your assets – do you have a computer? Printer? Software? ….Money!? There are some things that will be absolute necessities to starting your business, if you don’t have them, access to them or the money to buy them – you may want to consider other options.
6. A great support group?: One of the biggest obstacles faced by aspiring business owners is loss of focus, motivation and encouragement. We all lose steam, it’s natural. Having a system or group of people around you to help you re-charge and re-group is paramount to a successful business owner. The reality of it is not everyone will believe in you or support your efforts – but don’t let your focus be on that group; appreciate and cherish those who are!