Starting a small business requires determination, motivation, and know-how. No small feat. Sometimes, it’s luck! And many times, it is survival of the fittest!
Here are simple steps to guide you in starting a successful small business in Nigeria.
1. Identify Your Business Opportunity
Choosing what kind of business to start can be an immobilizing task when confronted with the multitude of opportunities. It’s important to determine where your passions lie and to understand your entrepreneurial personality type. Do you think you have found the one business opportunity that will bring you freedom, fame, and plenty of profits? If not, keep searching.
2. Build a Business Plan
For the majority of start-ups, a business plan allows you to gain a better understanding of your industry structure, competitive landscape, and the capital requirements of starting a small business. If business planning is beneficial, why do so few start-ups use business planning? Learn the critical steps to writing a business plan.
3. Name Your Business
What’s in a business name? Everything and nothing. The right business name will help distinguish you from a sea of bland competitors, provide your customers with a reason to hire you, and aid in the branding of your company. Find the best ownership structure for your small business. The most basic of all business legal structures is the sole proprietorship. Other possible structures include the popular limited liability company, a partnership, or an S corporation.
4. Register Your Business
Starting a small business requires the usual paperwork and regulations. Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) is responsible for this, for a small business start up you might not really need to incorporate the business as a Business name registration will do. Setting up your small business may require a business name registration to avoid embarrassment from local government authorities and to enable you get a corporate account with a bank. You can get your ex-school mate with a background in Law to help you out.
5. Find Start-up Money
Contrary to popular belief, most small business start-ups aren’t funded by grants, venture capitalists, or banks. Your seed money will come from your personal savings, friends, family, and any other creative means such as bartering.
6. Determine Your Business Location
Surveys have revealed that over 56% of the fastest growing companies were started at home. Discover what you need to make your home office design more productive. If home business isn’t for you, learn how sharing office space can aid your start-up. Don’t forget to review the pros and cons of office space leasing vs. buying. Read Tips on Choosing an Ideal Business Location.
7. Create an Accounting System
Unless you’re a number person, the accounting and book-keeping aspect of running your business can’t be avoided. Setting up your accounting system will help you understand the financial aspect of running a business. If you need help in setting this up, you can contact an ex-school mate who has a good background in accounting.
I’ll be discussing these steps one after the other in the future.
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