Your own skills, funding could grow your business

January 5, 2011

When you think about going into business for yourself, how do you come up with your money-making idea? And do you have realistic expectations of how much money and time the venture will cost you?

With the new year comes many financial goals — making more money a popular one — and ran a column from The Intersect Fund (based in New Brunswick) about that very subject. The objective: If going to business for yourself is one of your goals, you should first make sure you’re going about it the correct way.

Their first tip may seem like a no-brainer, but for many, it isn’t: Make sure you know what you’re talking about. Instead of trying to pull the next money-making idea out of thin air, think about what you’re good at — and what you already know a lot about. Build off that.

Also, the adage about home improvement projects — it takes twice as much time and money as you budget — is also true for starting your own business. There are always holdups and costs you don’t anticipate. Try to budget for that.

iVillage also has some tips for those thinking about entrepreneurism, from established entrepreneurs. The first few years will be difficult, the consensus says, but being flexible, surrounding yourself with supportive people, being flexible, and separating your work life from your personal life will go a long way.

A tip they offer, which I think is often overlooked, is to put together a business plan. I even made my husband do this when he wanted to buy some rental property. I’m a big proponent of the saying “Fail to plan, and you plan to fail,” and the business plan is no exception. How are you going to be successful if you don’t have a clear view of how you are going to do it? Put pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard, and do some brainstorming.

Hopefully, by building off your own talents and careful budgeting, this can be the year to grow your business.

This post is brought to you by the good folks at Dale Carnegie Training of Central & Southern New Jersey. We would love to connect with you on Facebook and Twitter @CarnegieJersey.

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