What does it take to startup a small business?
Money probably is what comes to your mind but there are really many more things that you need other than money to do your business. These are all attitudinal things. You should have the mental and physical stamina that would require you to be deeply involved in your business and oversee every minute detail day in and day out. You would need strong planning and execution skills, because if you are going to startup a small business it is initially going to be a one man show. You need to think through what you are going to do and then go ahead and do it as well. Once you identify that you want to undertake business the next step is to decide what kind of business you want to enter into. The choice must be influenced by your expertise, passion about the work, financial position and other factors like government regulation, competition and tax purposes.
Should I go in for a partner?
When you decide to startup the business it is important for you to lay out a business plan and understand what are the things it will take you to build a successful business. These will broadly include technical details, financial resources and managerial skill. Whether or not you go for a partner would depend on your weakness in one of these areas and the choice of your partner should strengthen you in the areas that you find your self weak.
How do I choose employees?
This is a very critical decision as the initial years are the shakiest for any small business which is just a startup. This one decision can make or break the future of your company. More than anything else you must keep in mind that quality scores over quantity. If you find someone that is good enough then you must be willing to pay them a little extra. It is better to have one stellar person working for you rather than three mediocre ones. Also keep in mind that the employees should be in sync with the culture of the company that you are trying to build in. If you like to run a tight ship with all decisions flowing from the top then you must have employees who are not opposed to authority and will follow the same with their subordinates so that you can propagate the culture that you want within the company as you go along building its size.
Where will I get the necessary finances?
Even to startup a small business you would need some sort of loans to go about it. There are several banks, venture finance companies, insurance companies and other financial institutions that lend to entrepreneurs who want to set up their own businesses. However it is advisable that you put some money of your own also when you start up the business. This will ensure that the lenders gain in confidence that you are putting your own money behind this and at the same time the interest outgo will be lesser as the loan amount in itself will be less. The SBA is another place that you can turn to even if you are refused by the banks and they would help you out with your financial needs.