How to Start a Small Business

If you are a person who likes to live life on his own terms and does not want to get stuck in the 10 to 6 job routine, then starting a business is a great option for you. But it is not that easy. You have to work hard till it establishes firmly. Also, business is like a 24X7 job which you cannot afford to neglect. So, think about it only if you are ready to work hard with passion. Starting a business is a planned activity, be it a small or a big venture. Organizing yourself and keeping an eye on opportunities is the first requirement. Also, it is advisable to start any venture on a smaller scale, especially when it is your first attempt at a business.

Steps in Starting a Small Business

Ideas

As someone rightly said, “a big business starts with a small idea”, which means that you must have great ideas that can fetch a lot of profit. The idea of course should be free of any illegalities. It should give you an opportunity to serve the people and cater to their needs. Also it should be commercially viable and practical. Once your vision and aim is clear along with the start up idea, you are ready to move on to the next step.

Research

Market research is one of the most crucial steps in starting a business. You must have a thorough knowledge of the sector you are planning to enter in. You also must know about the competition and the challenges you will have to face. In short, you must have the complete knowledge about the industry. This will help you start with proper precautions and will also help you taste the success a little earlier.

Plan

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Basic Business Management Skills

The verb manage comes from the Italian word maneggiare which means handling (especially a horse), which is derived from the Latin word manus meaning hand. In the 17th and 18th centuries, meaning of the English word management evolved from the Old French word mesnage.
“Management is the art of getting things done through people,” says management consultant Mary Parker Follett. People are perhaps the most valuable resource of a business. But there are others, like financial resources, infrastructural resources, inventory, and technology, whose optimum use is essential for effective business management. According to Peter Drucker, “Managers give direction to their organizations, provide leadership, and decide how to use organizational resources to accomplish goals.”
Management skills are classified as political (used in building power and business networking), conceptual (used in analysis of situations), diagnostic (used in taking an action in response to a situation), technical (domain knowledge), and interpersonal (people skills).
Management quote by Peter Drucker
Frenchman Henri Fayol describes management as a composition of five functions, namely planning, organizing, commanding, coordination, and control. Modern texts have reduced them to four, which include, planning, organizing, leading, and controlling.
Planning in management
Planning
Planning involves identification of your business goal and finding the way to reach it. It involves the estimation of various costs that will be incurred and evaluation of the time required to attain the business goal. A business plan has to be documented and reviewed on a regular basis. A plan is worth it if the attainment of the business goal is feasible with the allocated resources.
Organizing
It involves the assignment of tasks and allocation of resources throughout the business organization. It includes determining the primary goals of the business and strategies to reach them. It

How to Raise Money for a Business?

The capital is one of the first things that needs to be taken into consideration when one is setting out on a business venture, and there are many different sources to obtain this capital. It is not necessary to stick to one particular source rigidly; even a combination of various different sources can be used.

Anyone who is wondering how to raise money for a restaurant, a start-up, an advertising agency, or any other small-scale venture should keep these methods in mind. Approaching the right people for it is vitally important for the success of the business, and if this is not catered to properly, it will be doomed from the very beginning.

Personal Savings

This is the most obvious source of money for starting a business. If you have saved up enough money over the years, go ahead and make use of it to serve the underlying purpose. You will not be answerable to anyone, and you will not have to worry about repaying someone. If you choose this option, ensure that you are not using all your savings though. Many people neglect this option because if they lose it, they will have nothing left to live on.

Venture Capitalists

This is the next most obvious source for your initiative. Venture capitalists are professional agencies who put in venture capital into an upcoming business. What they get in return is either its share, or a share of the profits, or pretty high interest rates. It may sound like exploitation, but this is one of the best ways to get money. Venture capitalists are always looking for new and innovative business ideas that are likely to succeed.

Angel Investors

These are a refined form of venture capitalists, but many people think that they mean the same thing. Angel investors are less demanding than venture capitalists

How to Establish Business Credit?

With the rapid change in the financial world, everything related to finance is changing, whether it is credit facilities or investments. Steps are being taken to make everything simple, convenient, and fast. There is a consensus among financiers that businesses have different financial requirements, and there is a need to resolve them. One such step taken by these, which may help businesses, small or big, is to establish business credit. This is an option which you can avail of, where financial institutions provide loans, without needing the credit rating or the personal assets of the owner as security. And, most importantly, the organizations of every size and age can avail of it, whether it’s old or new, big or small. Whether you need finance for setting up or expanding the business, purchasing material or equipment, or advertising, this facility is always there for you.

Steps

There are various steps involved in establishing it. The first point that you should remember is to ensure strong fundamentals of your business. Moreover, you should also take care to see to it that you meet the requirements of financiers. Ensuring this would make listing of your business with commercial credit reporting agencies easier.

The next step is to develop a connection with suppliers and vendors. These suppliers and vendors should be such that they not just extend credit payments, but most importantly, report the history of your payments to the respective agencies. You need to have the backing of at least five such vendors, and they should not tie your personal guarantee or social security number while giving you such credit.

Obtaining credit cards for the same is the next step. You should get three such cards, but make sure that they are not connected to your personal credit. Moreover, you should also ensure that these

Business Plan Template

There are several situations when a business plan is needed. New employees, banks, lenders, creditors, and in general, people who hold a certain interests in a company have a look at the business plan before even dealing with the company. On the whole, a business plan plays a highly instrumental role in giving an appropriate insight to the company’s structure and operations. An annual report however, must not be mistaken for a business plan. The annual report principally consists of statutory disclosures of the company, and is concentrated around the performance of the company. A business plan is not necessarily prepared to scope that entire organization. In some cases, it is also prepared to depict the graph of a single product or initiative.

Format
In order to make the business plan more comprehensible, every element has been described in short here.

Executive Summary
The executive summary is an index cum introduction to the entire business plan. The summary must basically contain two different elements―the name of the company/business organization, and its premises and incorporation details. Apart from these, major key players of the business must also be mentioned. Some companies also quickly summarize their operations, objectives, and specialties. An accompanying company motto also adds to the charm. This is basically an index of the document, and enables the reader to skip whatever he already knows.

Business Description
The business description is an in-depth explanation to the company’s operations and different objectives that are to be achieved in the course of the business. If the company is a major market player in some specific product, then the business history and timeline of development is also included. So basically, what is written on this page includes what the company does, in what time it does

Business Succession Planning

At some point in your illustrious business career, you will surely feel the need for an able leader who can lead your company forward to growth and glory. It may be because you are seeking a retirement or may be you just want your offspring to shoulder the responsibilities of the family business. The decision to find a deserving successor can also result if the company is performing poorly and its worth is declining in the market. Whatever the case may be, planning to induct a new successor for the firm is a big decision, and should be implemented with care.

Family owned businesses carry with them a legacy of dedication and hard work. Hence, the succession should be carried out carefully so it doesn’t harm the firm in any way. Here are some guidelines to smoothen the process

Be Realistic
While considering the transfer of your business to your close ones, it is important that you decide the ownership transition a few years before officially leaving the office. You can segregate the different branches of your company and distribute the responsibilities to a few in the family. This will give them some practical experience, and prepare them for their responsibilities and designations that they are to hold in the near future. Chalk out a financial planning procedure with the help of your tax consultants and chartered accountants, that will help you during the transition period. Also, ensure that the tax planning is done in accordance with the firm’s goals and objectives in mind.

Carefully Hand Over the Duties
You may want your first son to be the successor of your business empire, or may be you have plans to divide the duties and responsibilities among your various family members. Try to have a free and fair talk with every successor,

Applying for a Business License

If you want to start your own business, the first step you need to take is to find out if you are required to obtain a business license, and/or a permit for commencing the business legally in your area. Usually, a majority of businesses are required to obtain a license and/or a permit.

If your type of business has such requirements, then applying for such a license should be your first step. A business license can be obtained through a city, county, or the state government office; and the requirements may differ from state to state or from location to location. Understanding what you need to do in order to prepare for the submission procedure will make the process a lot faster, which will enable you to obtain the license in less time.

Applying for and Obtaining a Business License

Before applying, it is important that you have all the documentation in proper order and ready to be present for further processing. The documentation would include information regarding the establishment of the business, any kind of identification number that is needed by the national government to recognize the business as legal, any other alternate names that are used for the business, and the business’ physical location.

All important business-related documents should be in place, so that you can provide the necessary ones to the local jurisdiction, without the need to stop the process for gathering other documents at the eleventh hour.

Your next step would be to approach the local government office, and determine which department or division is responsible for operating the issuance of licenses and permits that you specifically require. You also need to inquire about the information required for the application, how long it might take for the application processing,

Starting a Private School

A private school is an institution that is independent of the Government, which is run by a group of people by raising funds and tuition fees from children. Though it can be a bit expensive for the parents to send their children to these schools, many opt for them because these institutions offer several advantages such as excellent classroom facility, individual attention, and educational facilities like computer labs, libraries, etc. As a result, they have gained a lot of popularity over the years, and so, there is a need of more such institutions. However, a person thinking about opening one needs to know various important things about starting it. The process is a long one (at least two years) and requires a lot of preparation. Nevertheless, if a person has a vision and strong determination, this dream will surely bear fruits.

Essential Tips for Success

It is true that you have a great vision of starting a school. However, you cannot do it on your own, and so, it is important to form a committee, comprising experienced educationists, parents, teachers, community leaders, etc. It is also important to include lawyers, accountants, etc., in it. Once the committee members have been finalized, talk to them about your ideas about starting it, and ask them for their expert opinions. Divide the committee into various sections, with each group focusing on a specific area such as research work, budgets, employment, advertising, etc.
It is important to indulge in research work before deciding the type of school you want to start. Conduct surveys to know what are the local people looking for in relation to it. The results would help you in deciding whether it should have a kindergarten, boarding school, elementary classes, high school, etc. It is also important to decide how many

Business Management and Administration

In simple words, management can be defined as the function of utilizing and managing all the available resources in the organization, such as human resources, material resources, and financial resources, so that the goals of the organization can be achieved. A degree in business administration will prepare you to perform this function of management in an appropriate manner. To enter this profession, you will need to get into a business school and get an MBA degree. Here is some useful information on the kind of training, studies, and experience you can expect at a business school during your degree, followed by the jobs that you will become eligible for once you pass out of the course.

MBA Subjects

General Management
Human Resources Management
Financial Management
Marketing
Business Strategy
Economics
Accounting
Business Ethics
Information Management and Technology
Business Laws
Company Structure and Organizational Management
Entrepreneurship
Logistics
Economic and Financial Affairs
E-Commerce & Technology

Management Skills

Planning
Organizing
Leadership
Decision-making
Communication (Spoken and Written)
Problem Solving
Staffing
Controlling
Customer Relationship Management Skills
Negotiation Skills
Team Building

Today, education has evolved a lot, owing to changes that have taken place in the corporate world, due to globalization and technological advancements. There have been new subjects introduced, such as e-commerce, international finance, information technology, etc., and the emphasis is shifting more on practical experience and learning, by way of guest lectures by industry professionals, case studies, internships, presentations, and group assignments.

Careers in Business Management and Administration

A person who has an MBA degree, years of experience in the corporate world, and the desired skills, has the potential to reach the highest position in an organization, i.e., become a CEO. However, to reach such heights, he needs to have the experience of heading various departments, and performing all functions such as planning (setting individual, departmental, short-term and long-term goals),

Management Styles and Techniques

A leader or a manager should be very careful, while choosing the business management styles and techniques for an organization. This is because the success of an organization depends upon the kind of management styles and the management skills which the managers exhibit. Some management styles are people oriented, while others are project or work oriented. Here are the three management styles which are primarily used by the managers in today’s organizations.

Management Styles

Teamwork Style

Here, tasks are accomplished by constituting teams first, and then dividing the tasks among the teams. It is commonly observed that tasks are accomplished more efficiently through teams. That is why most organizations follow this style of management. The different team members bring their knowledge to the table while accomplishing various tasks, and hence, tasks can be done more quickly in teams rather than by individuals on their own. In order to function properly, there should be proper workplace communication between the various team members and also between the manager and the team members. “Team spirit” is a prerequisite for the success of this style of management.

Directing Style

In this style of management, the manager communicates the “goals, expectations, and standards” to the employees very clearly in the beginning itself. The manager is in direct control of the situation literally, i.e., he dictates to the employees what tasks have to be done, how they have to be done, and the deadline for those tasks. The manager has all the decision-making powers and seldom asks the employees for a feedback. This management style is considered slightly impersonal, but sometimes, such situations arise in organizations, such as meeting a deadline or when the number of employees is too huge, that only top-down management approach or directing style of