Thursday, 15 September 2011

How to Survive a Bad Economy

You're out of work. Your husband (or wife or roommate) is about to become unemployed too. You are getting unemployment compensation, but that's not enough to pay the rent (or mortgage). You can't find a job and your friends can't help because they aren't any better off than you. Now what? How do you survive in a bad economy?

Sound familiar? It's going on throughout much of the world, not just in your neighborhood. What can you do? How can anyone, anywhere, survive in a bad economy? The government can't help. The government probably created the bad economy in the first place.

Well, in the United States, and in much of the rest of the world, it is still possible to be an entrepreneur. That's right; be an entrepreneur. You can start and run your own small business. Many people before you have been able to survive in a bad economy in exactly that way; not only survive, but also prosper.

Since my experience and knowledge is mostly about the U.S., this article refers mainly on the U.S. The U.S. has a very strong entrepreneurial tradition. However, I do know that most of this information can be used in many other countries as well. Canada, Great Britain, India, China Australia, Italy and Russia have entrepreneurs also.

One of the problems with becoming a small business person is that government education doesn't prepare you for it. No, in today's socialist thinking countries, government education leans toward preparing you to becoming government employees or welfare recipients. They want you to rely on the government to survive in a bad economy. Besides, they'll tell you that things aren't so bad. Just "vote for me; I'll take care of you."

So, if you don't have an entrepreneurial education, how do you learn to start your own small business? Besides, don't businesses cost money to start?

Let me answer the second question first. Not all small businesses cost a lot of money to start. In fact, you can start some small home-based businesses with resources you already have; maybe just some of your time; maybe just your sewing machine or kitchen; maybe just your computer.

Now, back to that first question; "How do I learn to start my own small business?" Okay, let me give you a few quick answers:

Find someone who is already doing it and learn from them. Flattery could be helpful here. "I see you are successfully running a business. Do you think you could teach me? I'd be willing to work for you (maybe for free) and I promise not to go into competition against you." That's just one thought about how to go about it.
Read about starting businesses in libraries or on the internet.
In most cases, there are great e-books and courses available for purchase that can save you months, or even years of trial and error experience. Many of these resources have been created for you by people who have already done what you are trying to do. The investment in your education is well worth it so you won't have to reinvent the wheel.
Get your own direct experience. Once you get some knowledge, make a plan and get out there and do it. In many cases, your first one or two attempts won't be real successful, but the experience of doing, win or lose, it will end up being your best education. I know of successful business people who have had a dozen or more "failures" before becoming wealthy and successful. Experience is a great teacher.
Make a plan - even a quick plan - and get started. The biggest secret is to GET STARTED. Too many people think themselves to death and never accomplish anything.

What can you do to get started? Start by making a list of things you can do. Make that list as long as you can. Somewhere on that list could be your new business. Think not? I know a guy who started a local car service by taking non-drivers to their doctor appointments and to and from the airport.

What can you do? Can you teach young mothers to sew new clothes for their children? Can you give music lessons? Can you run errands for home-bound seniors? Look around you and look at your own knowledge.

Still can't think of anything? I know one guy who drove his pickup truck out to cattle farms and found someone willing to let him take some cattle manure. Yep, he made a business out of manure, selling it as fertilizer to home owners in the city. Find something and start doing it, today. You can improve on it tomorrow.

by : Mel Weiss

Saturday, 10 September 2011

Seven Basic Business Requirements

Let me start by appreciating the fact that businesses tend to be ineffective and unprofitable when certain requirements are not satisfied. Not until these requirements are met, business tends to remain on a spot as far as progress is concerned generally. Hence, to make your business effective and to meet up your set up goals and objectives, certain basic requirements must be met. I want us to clear fully examine Seven Basic Business Requirements. Here we go!

1. Your Attention.
As a sole proprietor, your business demands your whole attention if you really want your business objectives and goals achieved. You have got to commit not only your equity (capital investment), but also your whole self. Attention basically comprises of three factors which include:

a. Skills and Expertise. All you have got in terms of intellectual capacity or property as some will say, is required by your business.
b. Time. All your time have to b allotted to your business if you want progress otherwise, little trends would be visible.
c. Resources. Apart from your initial capital, you have to commit more of your personal resources to your business as every business is resources demanding- please bear this in mind.

2. Management.
Quite a lot of people have defined management. But in this context,it is your ability to control, guide and direct all your resources in the right proportion. your business requires that you guide, control and direct all your resources to meet up your set up goals and objectives. This entails adequate human resources development and direction as well as a good resources distribution. Adequate resources leads to an effective business as well as a good profit base investment.

3. Finding The Right Market Place.
The environment in which your end products are finally consumed or bought for the end user is very vital in this sense. Like it was shared in the last article, where I talked about increasing your Stock Turn Over (S.T.O), your market base should be able to fit into your products. When your products do not meet the intent desire of the folks in your environment, that is your immediate market place,it inevitable that such business will suffer a defeat. But if adequate market place is provided, it is inevitable that there would be a traffic of customers at your disposal. Finding a suitable and fitting market place is a requirement to make your business effective.

4. Other People's Services.
Let me start from the fact as far as the global economy is concerned, no one nation or country is self sufficient. No one country or nation is independent economically. Put in other words, every nation or country is dependable on the economic services of other countries of the world. In fact, this is the basis of international trade. Just as international trade is inevitable, the services of others as regard to your business is also inevitable. No matter the potential capacity or how small your business is, employ the services of other people. Other people's services matter in your business. Their services could help you solve certain problems in your business which you would not have ordinarily solve.

5. A Good Awareness.
In this 21st Century, information is the order of the day. In fact, that is the basis for Technological Revolution. 90 per cent of people want information. So giving your clients or prospective buyers the needed information tends to pull a traffic of buyers and patronizers at your disposal. IF the need be, strengthen the force of your business awareness.

6. Others Opinion.
For the sake of improvement and business quality, you can demand or seek for the opinions of other people as regard to your business. Place importance on what other people would say when it comes to your business products and services. It is not necessary that you execute every opinion but that you evaluate and see if any suggested opinion fits the improvement and quality of your business. The choice is yours but the opinions are theirs. Let them give their thoughts about your business and its products but you make the choice.

7. Proper Incentives.
As your business grows, the need arises for the employment of other people services. As a form of increasing the profitability basis of your business, you have to introduce a proper incentive packages for the employed. Doing this creates their zeal towards productivity thereby creating an avenue for their exploits in your business.
by : Tam Emmy

Monday, 5 September 2011

The Best Time to Start a Business

If you ask people the best time to start a business, some people will say you should never start a business when the economy is "bad." Chances are, these "experts" either have never started a business, or they have never been successful in any business of their own.

True, it is harder to start a business when the economy is bad, but the reason you start a business is to be successful. So, when is the best time to start a business? Think about it for a minute.

Let's look a two guys who have the same idea - open a pizza restaurant in a certain neighborhood. Guy "A," Andy, opens now, in a slow economy. He has trouble borrowing money, so he starts small, finds a place when rents are cheap, and works out creative deals with used equipment suppliers, or buys used equipment at auction sale of failed businesses.

Andy gets started, builds his business slowly and is careful with his money. As the economy improves, Andy's business has been growing; he has worked out the kinks in his menus, his service and his quality. He learned how to run a business on a small investment and with low overhead. Andy's Pizza Shop now has a sizeable, loyal following.

Guy "B," Bill, on the other hand, listens to someone who says a bad economy is not the best time to start a business. So, he waits two years for the economy to improve. Borrowed money is easy to find, so he finds a large, expensive location in the neighborhood, buys expensive equipment and opens Bill's Pizza Palace. At first, people flock there to see this new beautiful architectural wonder of a pizza shop.

When the new customers enter the "palace," they are met with high prices, poor quality and inexperienced management. Bill has too much money invested in his frills - fancy location and fancy, expensive equipment. He can't afford to be competitive with Andy because his overhead is too high.

Andy learned how to run the place when money was tight and there weren't many customers. When he made beginner's mistakes, it didn't cost much and not too many people knew about it. Andy has two years of experience and low overhead, while Bill has no experience and a lot of overhead. At this point, who would you bet on to still be in business a year from now? I'd bet on Andy.

Now, what do you think about the best time to start a new business?

By the way, I have seen this type of scenario play out several times, in several ways; fancy restaurants or pizza shops opening and going bust within six months or a year, while smaller shops grow slowly and stay around for years. In fact, I started a small food business in a bad economy. People told me I was making a mistake. By the time the economy improved, my business was so well established that no one was able to open up and successfully compete. Others tried, but failed.

The question still wasn't totally answered, though. When is the best time to start a business? It's now. Now is the best time to start a business. Actually, anytime can be a good time to start a business, provided you have planned it out completely and you don't waste a lot of money. Take your time and learn your business. Be aware that you will make some mistakes at the beginning, but if you can learn from your mistakes, you will be far ahead of anyone who waits for the perfect time or the perfect plan.
by : Meil Weiss