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Tag: entrepreneur

Accessing Funds for small scale business

Accessing Funds for small scale business

Accessing funds for your business remains one of the biggest hurdles to cross when planning to launch your small or medium scale business. Some do say it takes courage to make your dreams come through. I agree to an extent, but let’s be honest. Without money, your courage will be stranded! Some dreams need not just courage, but money to become a reality! 

That’s why entrepreneurs lookout for initial start-up capital to kick start their dream business. To be honest, there are millions of people out there whose dreams of achieving financial freedom have become stagnant due to the lack of start-up capital. We all need the courage to pursue our dreams, but money is like a fuel to take our dreams to its place of destination!

One of the most difficult stages in turning your idea into a tangible business is that of funding. There are however several sources of funding one can explore and possibly utilize when starting up a business.

Your funds

It makes logical sense to start from home. If you are serious about starting up that business of yours, then you must have worked out a plan about saving up for the business. You can never rely on other sources of funding when you don’t have a dime saved up for the business.

The best bet is to open a savings account and start saving before launching your business. It takes a lot of guts and self-discipline to save up. Try to maintain a certain standard which will require you to save a minimum amount monthly.

Friends and Family

Friends and family are the nearest sources for funding your business. You must have saved a tangible amount of cash before approaching them with the proposal for funding. More than 80% of family and friends would want to know the type of business you plan to start and also how much you’ve been able to save up for the business.

Be ready to answer these and more of their questions. One major drawback with this option is the fact that family and friends may want to interfere with your running of the business when they eventually lend you some funds.

Angel Investors

Angel investors are more like business-minded individuals who look out for potential businesses they can plow their funds into. In return, they get a percentage of share in the business. They are usually involved in more than one business, so if you are looking for a huge capital to start up your business, angel investors may not be the best option for you.

Banks

Banks should be your last port of call. They are generally willing to give out loans as long as they can confirm your business has potential. Be ready to check up on the different banks to compare their loan conditions and the interest rate on the loan.

All banks have their conditions and rate when it comes to granting loan facilities to entrepreneurs. Remember, having a good idea is not enough. You must be able to come up with a workable business idea. These are the things that would be required from you when you approach any bank.

Print out a copy of your business plan and if possible have a slide ready for presentation. The business plan must be practicable because no bank will be willing to invest in any business that may not yield any return on investment.

7 Amazing Characteristics of an Exceptional Entrepreneur

7 Amazing Characteristics of an Exceptional Entrepreneur

An entrepreneur is someone who starts a business and develops the necessary model that will enable him to successfully run the business. Although every business owner is unique and positively endowed in terms of gifts, talents, and abilities, however, some possess some exceptional qualities which stand them apart from the average business owner. Highlighted below are some of the qualities that can make a difference in the life of an entrepreneur:

Positive Mindset

To succeed in life, one must have the ability to be optimistic. Optimism is the ability to think possibility even in the face of failure and defeat. A positive minded entrepreneur is always searching for a solution to a problem. This unique quality gives the businessperson an edge over the average business owner.

Goal Setters

The ability to set and achieve a goal is another unique characteristic of an entrepreneur. Setting daily, monthly and yearly goals is a priority in the life of an enterpriser. These goals are a great source of motivation and incentive.

Focus

The success of every business owner depends largely on the ability to focus on the essential things in life. It is only when one can focus on life, that one can have the rare ability to concentrate on issues that are key to the attainment of the desired end. This unique characteristic is present in the life of every businessman.

Passion

There must be a desire and a burning passion inside of you before you can obtain whatever you need in life. If you are passionate about success, it is a sign that you are on the right track. Having a passion for something will give you the extra energy to continue when others have given up. It is what keeps you awake at night when others are busy sleeping.

Foresight

To envision the result of plans and proposals earmarked for the achievement of the desired goal. An entrepreneur can see profit where others are seeing losses. Foresight will enable the entrepreneur to make a sound decision and set distinct goals.

Determination

This is the ability to remain committed to a course or goal. If you are determined, procrastination will never be a problem. Determination is a virtue that keeps the entrepreneur on alert. it is like a prime mover in the wheel of the businessperson as the ability to venture into areas where others are afraid to go is made available.

Creativity

What distinguishes an exceptional entrepreneur from the average business owner is the ability to come up with new ways of doing things. They are creative and unusual in their thinking pattern. One thing that they have going for them, is the ability to implement these creative ideas. Fear of failure does not hinder them from achieving their set goals and desires.








Business

Business lessons for entrepreneurs

introduction

Business is always interesting when everything is going according to plans. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always go according to plans. Entrepreneurs generally go through a lot before they become established in their chosen business. There are several lessons to be learned along the entrepreneurship journey. These lessons may knock some entrepreneurs out of the race, while others will finish strongly. 

Family and Friends may not patronize you 

Don’t make the mistake of ever believing that family and friends will be falling head over heels in a bid to patronize your new business. The fact remains that, more than 80% of people who will patronize your business will be strangers. People you’ve never met in your lifetime. Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba puts it more succinctly: ” When doing sales, the first people who will trust you will be strangers. Friends will be shielding against you. Fair-weather Friends will distance themselves from you. The family will look down upon you”

A lady who is recently launched a Beauty spa shared her experience. She was shocked to realize that friends wanted to collect some of her beauty products free, but she refused. They went elsewhere to buy the same products at a higher price than what she was offering. It was a bitter lesson she was forced to learn. 

Theory is different from practical 

Don’t be carried away with the beautiful adverts you see on television. When it comes to launching a new business, entrepreneurs should be prepared for a bumpy ride.  On your business plan, everything looks perfect. You are expected to break even within the next 3 years. You are in your 4th year and the business is still shaky. That’s the difference between theory and practical. What you see on the field is quite different from what you see on papers and even on the advert. 

Business is not for the fainthearted.

It’s for those who are willing to brave the storm and get up when reality knocks them down. I once had a friend who was excited about the prospect of opening a new restaurant. In the first 3 months, the business was booming and it all seemed like his plans were becoming a reality. 

In the 4th month, his two gas cookers became faulty and he had to find a way to fix it. It cost him quite a lot to fix. In the 5th month, there was a lull in patronage as some of his customers were no longer coming to his restaurant due to job loss. In the 8th month, He was forced to drop 2 of the 4 staff he had working for him because he couldn’t afford to pay their salary anymore. The lessons he was learning was coming so fast, he was struggling to cope.

There is a clear difference between business and friendship. 

When it comes to business, there should be a demarcation between your business and your relationship with family and friends. You don’t mix both and expect to succeed as an entrepreneur. Treat friends and family as clients and avoid making the mistake of giving out your products to family and friends free of charge due to sentiments. 

 

business

Business Start-Up- Small beginning shouldn’t discourage you

business

The business world may appear lucrative and eye-catching, but building a small scale business into a giant conglomerate is never an easy task. It involves a whole lot of processes and principles, which many find so tough to implement.

One of the many advice entrepreneurs are given while venturing into the business world is to start with whatever resources one has. So many business owners who have chains of businesses never started big.

The first step is to birth that profitable idea into life. Not all ideas may eventually become profitable when implemented. Test run the idea on a small scale using different business tools and confirm if the feedback is positive or not. This can be done via the use of surveys or questionnaires.

Secondly, draw up a watertight business plan, outlining every aspect of the business and the model to be implemented. If you are not too good in the technical areas of the business plan, that can be outsourced.

The next step is one of the most crucial steps in your journey towards starting that small business of yours. You got to draw up various sources of funding for your business. Personal savings, family and friends, angel investors, banks, and other SME donor agencies are some of the options available. In making your choice of where to draw your funding from, wisdom must be applied.

Finally, having secured funding for your business, ensure you already have all the contacts, tools, and other logistics in place before attempting to kick start the business. A small scale business is like a small car about to undertake a long journey. The car needs enough fuel (finance) to get to the desired destination. Good tyres with the needed air pressure, proper engine checks.

Note however that the beginning of every venture is usually tough and filled with lots of hurdles. It’s not smooth sailing like most entrepreneurs usually find out in the middle of the journey. The most crucial aspect of starting a small business venture is to aim high.  You should also avoid staying at the same level each year.

There is always room for expansion as the business starts picking up. Financial institutions are always keen to support a thriving enterprise as long as they’re a mutual relationship when it comes to funding repayments.

As we approach the middle of the year, let your goal of setting up that small or medium scale investment become a reality.

 

journey towards Entrepreneurship

The journey towards entrepreneurship

Entrepreneurship is a journey that usually begins with a step. An entrepreneur is an individual who perceives profitable opportunities and is willing to take the risk in making a success of the enterprise. An entrepreneur remains relatively unknown in his immediate city or community until he/she gets a break. It must be categorically stated, that the entrepreneur is more than just a business owner.

The ever-changing world of business has created numerous definitions of the concept of entrepreneur and business. The 21st-century entrepreneur must be ready to weather the storm that may arise from various sources. The journey towards entrepreneurship requires some specific steps.

Create a unique concept

Firstly, you must be able to create a unique selling concept that has perceived opportunities. Think differently from the ordinary business owner and you will get a different concept of a product or service. Coming up with a unique concept usually takes a while, as the market is already saturated with lots of concepts.

Evaluate the concept

In addition to creating a concept, you need to evaluate the concept. This involves proper scrutiny of the concept to determine if it will stand the test of time. The usual practice is to invite other professionals to a brainstorming session where the concept will be dissected and evaluated.

Draw a plan

Having confirmed the veracity of the concept or idea, the third step is to draw a comprehensive plan, highlighting the strength, weakness, opportunity, and threat to the concept. The business plan is one of the most sensitive documents that can make or mar a concept or idea. Technocrats are needed at this stage for proper implementation.

Launch into the deep

Finally, you have done all the creation of concept and evaluation. You have even drawn up a plan. The last step is the most crucial of all. This is where most entrepreneurs develop cold feet and abandon all the plans and concepts they had labored for over the years. If you are afraid of sharks, you cannot go swimming in the ocean. Similarly, if you are afraid of failure, competition or challenges then you better look for other easy routes to success.

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