7 Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Become an Entrepreneur

Are you a $100K+ executive who is thinking about leaving Corporate America and starting your own coaching or service business?

Making the decision to venture out, take the risk and become an entrepreneur is hard, whether it’s because you can’t find a job in this tough economy or you’re simply tired of working for someone else. And, believe me I know.

In 1992, I decided to start my own business after being laid-off twice in the same year. Now, the idea was not completely new to me. My father, grandfathers, and many uncles on both sides of my family were bit with the “own-your-own-business bug.” Although, I knew exactly what I was getting into and even though I come from a long line of entrepreneurs, I still faced the same questions and fears that you’re facing right now.

Below, I show you how I made my decision to start my executive coaching business 17 years ago. And this process still works today as I ask my clients the same seven questions when they tell me that they want to transition from executive to entrepreneur.

The Top 7 Questions I Asked Myself Before Transitioning From $100k+ Executive to an Entrepreneur

Question #1: What is your motivation for becoming an entrepreneur?

Your motivation to become an entrepreneur must be strong enough to carry you through the ups and downs. Wanting to work part time while taking care of your children, trying to work as a 1099 until a better opportunity comes along, or having nothing better to do are poor motivators for starting your own business.

Question #2: What is your background and experience at work?

If your experience is in a back-office function or you’ve never had the experience of working directly with customers, you need to think about how you will acquire these skill sets. This does not mean that you need to master the art of cold-calling, but you must know how to close a deal.

Question #3: What strategies and tactics will you use to find leads?

More than anything, you need to hit the ground running. You need to find potential customers fast so that you can make deals happen. My advice is to delay building your marketing materials – including your website, brochures, and tools – until you know where and how to reach potential customers.

Question 4: How will you address the three big challenges of Money, Product and Pricing that every new business faces?

Under capitalization is the biggest reason company’s become bankrupt within the first year. You need to know how to finance your start-up. Personal cash reserves, credit and loans from family and friends are the most common methods.

Building a product or service includes the time and money needed to develop these materials and you need clarity about what your target market wants and needs. Take the time to learn through your network before you spend large amounts of money on prototypes that may not sell.

Pricing is the hardest challenge of all. My advice is to slightly under price your product and/or service to enter the market and as you prove your worth and brand, you can raise your prices over time.

Question #5: What course of action will you take to make your business successful?

This question goes to the heart of your commitment and what you are willing (and not willing) to do to make you a successful entrepreneur. Going into any new venture requires you to evaluate your discipline and diligence as it relates to your desired level of success.

Question #6: What are you going to do to market yourself?

Marketing yourself is all about the process of gathering strangers into your network and bringing them to a state of interest. This requires strategic planning that enables potential customers to engage in you, experience your value proposition and build trust before turning them into a potential sale. Building a website or a social networking site is not enough.

Question #7: How long will you stay involved in your business before you receive a consistent revenue stream?

Given that most businesses take nine months to a year to build a healthy and consistent revenue stream, you must look at your finances and determine what you will do in the meantime. Key questions include: How will you supplement your income requirements? What can you do to drastically cut your break-even point? How will you make up the difference?

There is also a personal side to building a business. You must transition from an accidental entrepreneur to taking your business seriously in order to be successful. And your family must be willing to give you the time and the resources to get your business off the ground.

Becoming an entrepreneur is one of the most satisfying, challenging, exciting endeavors any executive can do. If you want to take charge of your career, build something that gives you long-term control and provider yourself with the ultimate in freedom and flexibility, then making the transition from $100K+ executive to entrepreneur is well worth the effort.

Business to Business Partnership Opportunities

There are several types of business to business partnerships that a business owner may pursue in order to improve their business. The main objective behind most business relationships is to find new customer leads and convert them into increased sales and revenue for both participating companies.

Consider these four primary types of business to business partnerships in order to achieve the goal of increased sales and revenue including: suppliers, customers, resellers or companies with significant existing sales channels and/or vendors.

Each type of partnership has its own unique set of advantages and challenges for successfully implementing and maintaining, therefore it’s important to evaluate each type to understand which is in your best interest to pursue.

Suppliers

Creating business relationships with suppliers usually makes great financial sense and can lead to unique business opportunities. Many suppliers are in a very competitive environment and constantly have to find new channels to sell their products.

As a rule suppliers will be willing to give a business partner special pricing, expedited customer service and business referrals when opportunities that are out of their scope present themselves. However; there are some disadvantages with aligning too closely with a single supplier.

It is recommended that you keep your supplier partnership agreements as open and flexible as possible to allow multiple partnerships to exist in the same space thus avoiding price spikes or product unavailability due to unforeseen partner problems.

Customers

The best types of business referrals come from existing customers. Provide a revenue share or special pricing for customers that are able to deliver leads that turn into new clients. Developing an incentive program for customers that make referrals is a win-win situation. Often a simple discount can keep your business at the forefront of the customer’s mind when their meeting with someone that fits your target market.

Resellers or Agents

Many businesses that have large databases of potential customers will actively sell a product through their sales channels for a fee and/or a revenue share. Building partnerships with resellers can quickly grow a company’s ability to reach out to the market. Resellers will invest time and resources to market their partner’s products and put their sales force to work selling the product. Small businesses with limited staff to actively sell can benefit greatly from these types of partnership deals.

Vendors

Finding other vendors that sell a complementing product is the right partnership solution for a company that by itself has a product that is not the full solution that a customer is looking to purchase. An example is a computer hardware manufacturer partnering with a company that makes software to do unique tasks that a customer needs.

As a business owner seeking additional deal flow, it is important to evaluate all of the business to business partnerships that are possible for your company. Regardless of whether the focus is on vendors, resellers, suppliers, or existing customersFree Web Content, if properly executed business to business partnerships are one of the best strategies for business growth.

Why your business could profit from portable workspace

Who can blame you given that a portable building is not a mainstream subject. We implore you to see that this is simply not the case in 2011. One can certainly argue that the industry itself has had close ties with building firms. Really, no one in the industry should feel responsible for this as

This probably could have been the truth 20 years ago, but in 2011 they have multiple uses. In this new article we uncover a selection of the most frequent uses for portable buildings.

The first thing to note is that not all temporary buildings are precisely the same thing. This normally because most of the workers in Britain wrongly think all portable cabins are the same. This is untrue because these brand of building can be sorted in different categories.

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So whilst generically they are recognised as mobile buildings in reality there are plenty of varying ones. Only an experienced professional in this area would discern the difference between each building. One accusation which has been leveled at temp structures is that these types of structure are boring, dull or irrelevant.

Modular buildings

There are many uses for modular buildings, some of which you might not have heard of. The plethora of industries that use these buildings include those in the voluntary and commercial sector. It must be said that the property developers use these more than most.

Therefore it is quite right to argue that there is almost no company in the land that cannot enjoy the rewards of buying modular buildings. There are loads of benefits including…. scalability, cost efficient and flexible. We wager that once you get one, constructed, you will unearth a load more.

An associated point to note is that portable workspace buildings are not very risky in any instances. This primarily due to the point that you can do one when you feel like it. Compare this situation with a business that has just agreed to a commercial real estate agreement. Once this comparison is complete you can blatantly see why these structures offer outstanding value for money when balanced against the cost of a real building.

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The primary matter you will have to decide is whether to buy or rent a portable building. This would hinge upon ones own monetary standing as well as the time frame you required the buildings for. Hiring one of these structures is often the most viable option for a business. Another thing worth saying when choosing these options is that you can hire a used or new mobile building.

Notwithstanding this, purchasing one may make more sense in the grand scheme of things, if you hang onto your building. Now you have the facts at hand you should be able to pick the correct building to suit your needs.

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