Starting your own business certainly offers a lot of advantages over working for somebody else, but how prepared are you to meet the many expenses that will spring up? Take into account factors such as renting a place, hiring people to build up a team, purchasing office furniture and supplies, investing in marketing & promotions….. the list goes on. One of the biggest mistakes that entrepreneurs make is to underestimate the expenses that come with setting up a business. That’s also why many start-ups fold within a few months. If you are serious about making a name for yourself, you need to remember that a few initial sacrifices will pay off in the long run. Here are a few practical tips from the experts on how you can play a big role in reducing your start-up venture’s expenses
Start small. As long as you can comfortably run the show and do the groundwork from the comfort of your home or garage, you save on paying rent for office space.
Make a list. Have a list of ‘must-have’ and ‘must-do’ points in order to kick-start your venture. List down opening a bank account, fees for licenses and permits as well as other misc costs so that you have an idea of how much capital you need.
Don’t rush into hiring. Sure, you want a big office with well planned departments, but it makes sense to wait till your feet are on firmer ground. Begin with hiring one –two employees instead of a full team all at once.
Recycle and reduce usage. Office stationery is one of the biggest expenses that firms have to live with and it is one drain on money that you can do without in the beginning. Order an optimum number of letterheads, name cards and other must have stationery. Recycle paper when you can and use the printer only when absolutely necessary.
Take time to hire the right attorney (for all the legal work) and an accountant (for all the financial aspects) to help you deal with paperwork, records, ledgers and bookkeeping. But remember to hire professionals who offer their services at an affordable rate.
Mail and make calls. It’s important to build your network from the start, so dig up old associates and make new ones by getting their official contact numbers and email addresses. There’s plenty of free software online which let you make calls for free or at a nominal rate.
Do your homework. It’s a competitive world and it’s all about the customer. So don’t hesitate to compare deals from banks, compare printing rates or even which store gives you cheaper office supplies. A difference of even 5 dollars is money saved. With careful planning, you can keep such expenses to a minimum.
Go virtual. The Internet is a great place to launch your business and with plenty of websites offering great advice and software, it makes sense to be visible online. You could even create your official webpage by signing up with a blog provider. Remember that a little promotion never hurts.