So You are Thinking of a Start-Up Business in 2016 – Decisions, Decisions (Part 1)

Part 1 of 4 - So You are Thinking of a Start-Up Business in 2016

It's the time for resolutions.  There's no better path to wealth and glory than a starting-up business, and also no better path to misery. For those of you thinking about a start-up a business this year, that's a resolution quite different than losing weight, as starting a business requires a significant investment of time, effort, money and reputation.  It may actually lead to weight gain, so I'm writing this post to assist you with this particular resolution:  "I'm going to start my own business this year."

Because Intelliversity is all about innovation, I'm not talking today about the easy non-innovative way to start up a new business: copying an existing business model that's already working. This includes purchasing a franchise, engaging in multi-level marketing, or putting out your own shingle as a professional service provider (doctor, lawyer, accountant, contractor, engineer, etc.).  I encourage you to think about these types of businesses if you want greater independence, but this post is not about copying an existing business model. It's about innovative ideas (products or services), and those of you who give professional advice to innovators.

Stop or Go with a Start-up Business

First, I'm going to be very clear about reasons NOT to start-up an innovative business (a business based on an innovative idea):

- You need a job (or a better job) because you're almost broke
- You absolutely loathe working for someone else
- You want to spend less time working
- You want to get rich quickly
- You want to cheat people or are unconcerned with value

These are absolutely terrible reasons to start a business.  The first is terrible because starting a business is going to cost money (most likely).  The second is terrible because clients and the business itself become your bosses; you will not gain the sense of freedom you crave.  The third is terrible for reasons that should be obvious by now:  starting a business is a lot of work, in general far more than working at a job. The fourth should also be obvious:  though starting an innovative business may be the best and most fun (eventually) way to become wealthy, it probably won't happen as quickly as you imagine, and most businesses never result in great wealth.  You just get by.  Regarding the last reason, you're better off going to work for the government - you're more likely to get away with it there.

Before you put your hand up and tell me about the exceptions to these rules, I'll tell you first that I know there are exceptions.  Of course, there are exceptions.  This is an educational post, not individual coaching, and you may be the rare exception. Feel free to contact me through this website's Connect page if you would like some coaching on your individual idea and situation.

Let's assume for the moment that you're not motivated by one of the bad reasons listed above to start-up an innovative business. Here are some good reasons:

- You have a great idea and want to see it succeed
- You're company won't support your new ideas and you're frustrated
- You want to be wealthy eventually but not overnight
- You want to impact or change the world through your innovation
- You enjoy running an innovative business, being the man or woman in charge
- Running an innovative business is the way it rolls in your family

Starting a successful innovative business does NOT require that you be a saint or a genius.  Elon Musk does have an advantage, but entrepreneurs with average intellectual skills combined with extraordinary motivation and business instincts succeed all the time.  Intense motivation along the lines listed above is key above all.

So the first decision you have to make is:  are you intensely motivated in one of the above "good" ways.  If not, that's OK.  Find another way to start a business. As implied earlier, if you want to be a business owner, and don't have an innovative bone in your body, the ways that are most likely to succeed are to:

- Buy a franchise (chose from one of thousands available) and do what they teach you
- Join a multi-level marketing program and do what they teach you
- Get a professional license and work under a successful professional for a few years first, then do what he/she teaches you

So after due consideration, do you still want to start an innovative business?  OK then, how do you know if you have a reasonable chance of success?

In part two of "So You are Going to Start Up a Business in 2016", we will talk about two important areas: Essential Business Factors and Essential Personal Factors. Part two is available January 12, 2016.

Thanks for reading. Robert Steven Kramarz