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How can I start my own business?

By Ghadeer Habash , Family Flavours - Apr 21,2019 - Last updated at Apr 21,2019

By Ghadeer Habash

Internationally Certified Career Trainer

 

Starting your own business can bring joy and fulfilment from the moment you start thinking about your project. 

But entrepreneurship is not as easy as it may seem as I learnt first-hand from building and developing my own business of custom designed artisan clothing and accessories. 

Here are my tried and tested tips for starting your small business.

 

How to start?

 

When exploring entrepreneurial ideas, think of: 

• What do you like to do most? Pursue your passion 

• What are you good at? What are your skills? 

• How is this idea different from available solutions in the market? 

• Why do you think it is a better idea? 

• How can you become better at what you are doing? 

• Check out YouTube videos, classroom and online training, read relevant books on the subject, talk to people with similar experiences, get exposure, travel to learn from similar initiatives in different countries

 

Skills you need to succeed

 

If you think that your hard skills and academic knowledge or background are all that you need to start a successful business, you are mistaken! You will soon discover that there is much more to starting a business than you imagine. Here are skills you may not have thought of: 

•Customer service (you will find yourself dealing with customers all the time!) 

•Selling and negotiating skills (customers tend to negotiate prices, payments and delivery) 

•Time and stress management (you cannot waste time – wasting time is wasting money)

•Crisis management (what if plan A does not work)? 

•Photography (your product is as good as the image you post) 

•Social media literacy (deciding which platforms are more suitable for your business and how to promote your work through them) 

• Social skills and relationship building 

• Anger management (to face unexpected disappointments!) 

• Basic marketing knowledge (you need to have a commercial name and a professional logo for example; some reading on proper branding is useful) 

• Basic financial knowledge (purchasing, pricing, profitability, calculating cost) 

• Communication skills (professional E-mail writing, presentation skills and so on)

 

What no one 

else will tell you!

 

• Build your network; connections and relationships can be the most important factor in your success 

• Do your own research and work hard to find your sources — no one will help you get the best raw materials or tell you about the best processes 

• You learn by experimenting and out of your own experience (never give up) 

• There are no shortcuts to success; you can only climb the ladder, one step at a time 

• Be ready to be copied! 

• Do not wait for the perfect product, do your best to produce a product that is as good as it can be and keep developing and improving it as you go 

• Invest in building your online presence and a professional brand image on the web 

• Test your product with the right audience (your mother or father will only say that you’re awesome!)

 

How to increase your chances of success

 

• Making sure that you are satisfying your customers’ needs and wants 

• Knowing your customers and talking to them (create an interactive customer’s database) 

• Creating a cohesive team 

• Never compromising on quality 

• Never overpricing or underpricing your product 

• Paying extra attention to marketing and sales 

• Participating in relevant workshops, events and exhibitions

 

As exciting as it sounds, being your own boss has its risks and challenges. Unfortunately, most new businesses do not make it to the fourth year! So my final advice to you is to never invest all your financial resources and never put all your eggs in one basket. 

An ideal scenario is to have another source of income while you build up your new business. And know that success takes time and includes a lot of trial and error to reach your desired outcome.

Good luck entrepreneurs!.

 

 

 

Reprinted with permission from Family Flavours magazine

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