Starting your own business:  Do you have what it takes?

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If you’re reading this guide, you’ve probably developed a big idea that you believe will become a successful business. Or perhaps you’re just ready to be your own boss. No matter what your motive is, the rewards and risks of starting your own business are great.

Running your own business takes a lot of careful planning, time, resources, energy — not to mention a lot of guts! Consider the following issues before going into business yourself.

Will you be devoted to your business? If you want to work a 9-5 job and earn a steady paycheck, then you’re not ready to own a business. Business owners must work many, many hours. If you think you’ll have more control over your schedule as a business owner, you’re wrong.  In addition, it is important for a business owner to understand he or she is often the last person paid. Vendors, suppliers and employees must be paid first.

Do you have strong leadership and interpersonal skills? As a business owner, leadership is obviously an important skill. But you must also be good at working with a wide variety of personalities that you’ll deal with among customers, vendors, suppliers, lawyers, accountants and employees.

Are you organized? Being organized is a requirement for business owners. They need to keep track of the daily ins and outs of operations, including the ability to keep track of employees, finances, production and other areas of running a business.

Do you have significant savings? It might be awhile until your business earns enough money for you to receive a steady salary. In addition, you will be required to put up a significant amount of your own money to receive bank loans or money from angel investors.

Are your family members willing to support your decision? Running your own business will affect your family in many ways. You’re likely to have less time to spend with them — especially in the startup phase. In addition, do you have second income earner whom you can depend on if it takes time for the business to make a profit?

Industry knowledge. Do you have significant knowledge and experience in the industry you are about to enter? The more you know about your industry, the more likely you are to succeed.

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