The decision to start a business is a huge moment in anyone’s life but, equally, it is not something that should be undertaken lightly. In practice, your decision regarding what type of business venture to embark upon will be fundamental to your success. Whether you are planning to set up a business from scratch or to purchase a going concern, it is still crucial that you choose the right type of business for your personal and professional skills.
Ideally, you should be passionate about the line of business and the product or service that you have in mind. This way, you can inject the necessary level of enthusiasm into the business which will be vital in drumming up business and obtaining a loyal client base.
Knowledge is also extremely important, but can generally be learnt and ‘gaps’ filled if necessary. Certain types of businesses will have a requirement that you possess a professional skill or qualification and there is no avoiding these pre-requisites; for example, financial advisers, health practitioners and childcare providers.
Apart from the need for specific professional qualifications, experience and reputation may also play a role in certain businesses. If this is the case and you do not possess the appropriate transferable skills, you may have no option but to spend a few years working for someone else in order to generate the required experience and to develop the necessary skills.
More generic skills needed to run a business, such as book keeping, can be learnt through the use of short courses; these are well worth attending (or pursuing online), regardless of the nature of you intended business.
As well as your skills and enthusiasm, it is also worth considering what you hope to achieve from owning a business, in terms of personal development. Running a business of any sort demands a huge input of energy and emotional commitment. Certain types of businesses, however, do offer a larger degree of flexibility and freedom than others and this consideration should certainly be part of your decision making process.
Businesses that require the purchase of large amounts of raw materials upfront or the investment in expensive premises are likely to put a greater strain on your finances. With such large regular and upfront costs to meet, you could easily feel pressured to work longer hours, particularly initially. If finances are tight, you may wish to consider an alternative business type that does not require considerable outlay, or one that is likely to generate a positive return, very quickly.
Deciding on what business to buy is the first, and most fundamental decision that you will have to make;
consider issues such as your own skills and passions, firstly;
secondly, look into any skill gaps that you have and the best ways to plug these gaps; and
finally, consider just how much time and money you want to put into the business so that you can align your goals with your business ideas.