June 20, 2018 | ° F

Building a Business


Building a Business

I’m a college senior graduating in May with a degree in business. In one of my advanced courses this semester, we’re responsible for designing a product with a group, which is something I’ve always wanted to do. My team spent at least a week brainstorming together before deciding what we wanted to do. 

This past week, we finished putting together our proof of concept to present to the class. Once that’s done, we’ll probably get permission to develop a working prototype. That got me thinking: what if the product idea is good enough to launch for real?

I already know most of my peers aren’t interested in starting a business, but maybe it’d be appealing to at least a few. Either way, not having a business partner wouldn't necessarily be a dealbreaker. What should I be doing if I wanted to give this thing a shot? 

It takes a courageous soul to start a business and a stronger one to make it successful. No shortcuts or simple solutions exist to the challenges that you’re likely to encounter. Those tough realities are only the beginning. Before making a decision, you’ll want to take a few insights and suggestions into careful consideration. 

Let’s begin by ensuring that you’re starting a business for the right reasons. So much in life is about having an appropriate mindset, and launching a business is absolutely no different. The road to success is long, arduous, and overwhelmingly uncertain. Perspective and adaptability are critical to navigating the path, but that can be made tremendously difficult if you’ve embarked on the journey for all the wrong reasons.  

Once you’re confident about where you stand, the next step is road mapping and setting realistic expectations. Experts have written extensively on these topics. Some have outlined common misconceptions to dispel and others have shared helpful tips for novice entrepreneurs. It’s important to remember that mistakes and failure are both unavoidable when you start a new business. It should come as no surprise that some of the most valuable insights are those gleaned only after failure. 

You might also find it useful to know that it’s quite possible to launch a product without starting a business. This type of scenario certainly wasn’t nearly as possible even a decade ago. Nevertheless, should you remain steadfast about launching a product business, there are some common risks involved that you’ll want to understand. Conducting this due diligence will likely underscore exactly how much work is necessary to run a legitimate business. 

While you’ll be confronted with a multitude of obstacles, obtaining sufficient funding tends to be one of the most pressing and difficult. Writers at Entrepreneur published a list of ten viable funding options for the inexperienced. Evaluate each channel wisely and weigh the pros and cons before committing to anything. One sound strategy is researching what seasoned business owners have shared about their own endeavors. For instance, you could investigate insights from a serial entrepreneur. Consulting a business lawyer is a prudent choice, too. Don’t hesitate to tap into professional expertise when more serious barriers arise. 

“Success is walking from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.” -- Winston Churchill


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