Posted Wednesday, December 29, 2004
When you decide that you would like to go into business for yourself, the first step is deciding on a type of business that fits your idea of "comfortable" and "fun". After all, the whole reason you want to go into business for yourself is the fact that what you are doing right now is "uncomfortable", and "not fun".
So, the first thing you should do is make a personal assessment of who you are. For instance, what do you like? What are your favorite hobbies? Do you like working with or around people? Or, are you a homebody? Do you have any skills that could help you (such as typing, office skills, organizational skills, etc.)? What do you dislike?
Yes, what you dislike is as important as what you like. Without knowing what your dislikes are, you are liable to turn your projects into something that you don't want to do, but end up stuck with. Figuring out what you dislike before-hand will enable you to plan accordingly, and make sure that what you dislike does not interfere with what you are trying to build. Dislikes help you decide policies and procedures that you normally would not think of when writing out your business plan.
For instance: Do you like or dislike knocking on stranger's doors? Are you comfortable or uncomfortable talking to strangers face to face? How do you feel about telephones? Do you feel differently about emails or letter writing through postal mail?
If you are comfortable talking to people face to face, then you should start out with products that you believe in, and go for the direct selling technique. However, if you are more comfortable with writing, you may want to consider a mail order type business, or an internet business.
Whatever type of business you choose, it will be up to you to decide the best marketing strategies to fit your needs. You will be making list after list of what works, what doesn't work, and why you feel it failed, and how you think you could have improved the methods. After all, whatever business you decide to get yourself into will be up to you to promote. If it fails, it will be because either the market wasn't there, or the promotion wasn't there. Both reasons will be your own responsibility to account for.
While deciding what is "comfortable" and "fun" will help alleviate the worry and dread of working at what you enjoy, we must remember that running your own business is work -- and sometimes it requires breaking a sweat in order to make a profit. So, once you have decided what is "comfortable" and "fun", you will need to decide what skills you are best at that will help you manage and promote your business.
Test your targeted market by using several methods, at first, to promote your business. Find the one that works best for you, and then be consistent. When you are doing something you enjoy doing, doing it every day doesn't seem so hard.
About the Author
Shonda Ponder is the owner and editor of Texas Express News. She is also an Independent Sales Representative for several direct sales companies, and can be reached by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org.