Frequently Asked Questions: Startups
Startups can be exciting and challenging. Did you know that there are an array of FREE resources available to help you establish a strong foundation for your business? When first joining the entrepreneurial sector Roxana was baffled by the number of people that go into business without establishing the right business model simply because they were unaware of the abundance of services available to do so. Many rush into a new business because they just want to see it all come into fruition and feel trying to learn so much will just be a waste of time. At the end, it becomes a very painful process of lessons learned and financial constraints.
In this section, you will find the most pertinent questions received regarding starting a new business. If you have any questions you’d like answered, please feel free to email us at EmpowerMe@LatinaNomad.com. Don’t forget to check out the Latina Nomad blog posts or YouTube videos which will also provide you with some additional tips to establish a successful business.
Q: Any free resources available to help me start my business?
A: Yes! The Small Business Development Center (SBDC) or SCORE are two great resources. The SBDC helps you create a business plan, provides you with FREE industry reports and much more. SCORE provides FREE mentorship and creates inexpensive workshops to help educate you. Neither will do the work for you but both are a fantastic resource to help you get started.
Now, why would we tell you about these free resources and risk losing you as a client? The truth is we are in the business of developing you as a leader and establishing your business for success while saving you time and money. A business strategist can charge you to do the business plan but if you are not part of the process and put your own work into it then it won’t add as much value. It’s like letting someone learn how to drive a car for you. They would not be able to take the road test for you and you would always be dependent on their services. You definitely need a business expert to help guide you through the process of choosing the right endeavor; developing your vision; understanding the business plan financials and essentials; and identifying your target market and marketing needs. There is a lot you can accomplish with the free services to reduce cost on your side. So do not wait! Visit the SBDC or SCORE website and schedule an in-person or phone consultation today to find out more.
Q: Do I really need a business or strategic plan?
A: Yes, YeS, YES! Roxana can not emphasize how essential it is to not only create a plan but to follow it. Not doing so will only set you up for failure. At a minimum, a strategic plan will help establish you as a strong leader. It allows you to develop your vision, facilitate sharing your mission, provide a clear analysis of opportunities along with potential setbacks and so much more. Check out the FREE templates made available by SCORE which can give you some insight on what is required for scheduling a consultation with a mentor. Remember, the more you know the less expensive it will be for you to build your business. Take advantage of the free resources available to gain as much knowledge as possible before going in to meet with any business strategist, consultant or coach so that you can get the most out of your sessions once you begin paying for professional services.
Q: What resources do I need to start my business?
A: TOP 10. These are, what Roxana believes to be, the must-have resources you should acquire before starting a new business.
- Establish a good support system. You are going to need it to help you manage stress levels and keep your sanity.
- Learn as much as possible about your competition and industry. Learning from competitors mistakes and accomplishments will help you hit the ground running when launching your business.
- Find a great mentor. It will help equip you with the knowledge and experience you lack.
- Human Capital
- Find the right talent to align with and share your tasks. This will help increase your revenue opportunities.
- Create the right work environment to ensure your productivity (home office, shared work space). A good work environment will help you stay organized and motivated.
- Invest in real lawyers to establish the right business structure; contracts; etc. Doing otherwise will cost you more in the long run.
- Develop a website. Regardless of what anyone tells you, it’s a MUST. Social media is a great tool but you need a platform that will centralize all your information to provide potential clients with a detailed visual of your product or service.
- Arrange mutually beneficial partnerships. It will help you land clients, as well as, improve and grow your business.
- Financial Capital
- Obtain funding for your business. It will limit debt before generating revenue.
- Financial Management
- Acquire an accounting person or software system to manage your finances. It will help you avoid any issues with Uncle Sam (IRS)
BONUS: Kick-arse business model – Get a business or strategic plan done. It will serve as a great management tool for your business.
Q: How can I fund my project | program | new business?
A: Alternative Funds! Uf! So many to list but here are a few that go beyond your network of family and friends.
- Government and Company Grants
- Accelerator Programs
- Consumer Crowdfunding
- Accredited Investor Crowdfunding
- Individual and Group Angel Investors
- SBA Loans
- Sell Assets
- Private Equity Firm
- Customer Investments
- Rent Apartment/Home
- Vendor Financing
- Purchase Order Financing
Click on the links below to learn about other Frequently Asked Questions.