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#1 » by Jegz (m) (β1970) » June 18th, 2018, 5:29 pm

Your decision to start a business may be one of the biggest steps you would take in your entire life. And it's effects could be so far-reaching that you must ensure this step is not a misstep. What do I mean?

Starting a business or venturing into entrepreneurship may mean you need to quit your salary job, it may require you risk your life savings, it may also require you sacrifice your precious time, or even sacrifice some comfort you or your family may enjoy now. You may also need to take loan at great interest rate and maybe also put down your property as collateral. Sacrificing so much to start a business should call for caution. You just have to get it right.

And if you are venturing into one soon, this post is for your. Follow me.

According to Helen DeGeneres, whatever it is you do that requires both of your hands, your head must be in it too. This means if you must sacrifice so much to venture into business, you just have to get it right.

Unfortunately many have ventured into businesses without doing all the proper homework, without getting answers to the necessary questions. And you could tell what next. Many have lost money, time and more to failed businesses.

Now, basically, you must have clear answers to the following questions if you are really ready for business.

1. What value are you adding? And how?
This is your whole business idea itself. What value is your product or service going to add to my end users/customers? If you cannot answer this even in your dreams, then I guess you may not know what you are going into. You are not ready. Maybe at this stage you'd better stop and give that money to charity instead. To understand and answer this question, you must know the following:
What problem is my product or service going to solve?
What need is my product or service going to fill?

2. What are your funding sources?
However small, every business venture will require some financial commitments. If you have this beautiful business idea but don't know where to get funds, the idea may be as good as dead. You need to identify your primary funding source, be it savings, loan, or others. You also need to be aware of secondary sources too. Some may invite investors in the long run. You need to know all these as each stage of your business growth may require strong financial pathway.

3. Who are your target customers?
Yes. If you are going to be producing or you will be rendering services, you must clearly identify your target customers and study them. Studying them will help you know them better. Know your customer's demographics, location and many other characteristics which will help your business decisions. Related questions include:
What is their economic class?
Their ages?
Income brackets?
Locations? And many more.

4. How would you handle credit?
You cannot run away from the issue of credit. That is why you must have a strong credit plan. This will form part of your company policy as it will guide how you administer credit or extend credit to your customers.

5. What is your marketing and promotion plan?
Marketing budget is now higher than ever. How you you reach, sell to, retain and also get feedback from your customers? Your solid marketing plan will cater for this. All these must feature in your business plan.

6. Who are your competitors?
If you are lucky and you do not have any competitor, then you can ignore this. But in case you are the newbie in the market, you must identify who your competitors are and how you are going to not only survive, but also to thrive in the same market. You must identify actionable strategies that will will you a profitable market share. Thi will also address how your company will identify and differentiate itself. Your branding.

7. How will you manage the business?
This has to do with internal organogram of your company. If its a sole proprietorship, and you will be the one-man soldier, then its the simplest case. But if you must staff up, then you must have a solid working plan on who does what. This will address hierarchy and even remuneration. Salary and many more.

8. What is your break-even point?
You must have a vivid understanding and facts plus figures of what must happen before you can say you have broken even. Some businesses are dead even before commencing. This is because people entertain the brightness of business ideas more than the maths.
The math must jive. If you cannot do the maths, get someone to help you do the cash flow and other financials. This is the only way you can be certain you understand the business financials. Because its all about the figures. Turnovers, and others.

Who among you would want to build a house and will not first sit down and calculate the costs?

That's proper planning.

In summary, all the above are just layman explanation of what a standard business plan must address. Rather than use bogus grammar and vocabulary, I have decided to break everything down to common sense. With the above addressed among others, an intending entrepreneur will feel the self-confidence in himself that he is ready to take the next step. It is important to address all these before committing anything.

Hope these are useful to someone. Please share.

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(6 Likes)   0jay, eMade, Gideon985, NiceGuy, Premia, Yuvraj liked this topic.
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#2 » by eMade (f) Premium (β31421) » June 18th, 2018, 8:26 pm

:clap: Amazing points.
:clap: About βCoins: 61200 Premium Members: 61848 Refer&Earn: 62508

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#3 » by Key7 (β4449) » June 18th, 2018, 9:38 pm

:clap: :clap: :clap:
Bestnaija rocks! Seing is believing. See 61200

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#4 » by Premia (β337) » June 18th, 2018, 11:54 pm

:mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

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#5 » by Yuvraj (β111) » June 24th, 2018, 11:42 pm

Good stuff. :good:

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#6 » by NiceGuy (m) (β1285) » June 25th, 2018, 8:01 am

How would you kick-start a business without knowing where money will come from? Who does that?
Lasting #Change is a gradual process...

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#7 » by omolomo (β703) » August 4th, 2018, 8:25 pm

NiceGuy wrote:How would you kick-start a business without knowing where money will come from? Who does that?

Some people dey get faith o. Blind one sha.
I like work: it fascinates me. I can sit and look at it for hours.

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