Getting Started In Your Small Business
Have you ever dreamed of opening your own business? Telling your boss to take a hike?
Interviewing nurses who have taken a hobby or idea and turned it into a business is a blog task I truly enjoy. Many of these entrepreneurs are hoping to leave their day jobs as their ideas become full time businesses.
Even with a wealth of free marketing tools and the level playing field that is the internet, it can be difficult to grow a small business into a money maker. Having a written business plan and goals or milestones are a big first step to success.
The Small Business Administration continues to report that 50% of businesses fail within the first 5 years. The SBA and other sources offer tips on how to get started and prosper but those are dismal odds. Hmm, kinda like marriage huh, a 50% failure rate…
An article in Entrepreneur, an online magazine, has many ideas on how to cut costs while turning your dream into a profit making reality. Keeping costs under control can jump start your road to
Fame and Fortune profit.
Besides obvious money saving strategies, like working 130 hours a week as Google’s Marissa Mayer did when the company was an infant, there are other not so obvious tips.
Money Saving Small Business Strategies
Reward your employees without spending a fortune. Hard working, dedicated employees may deserve rewards and vacations, but do it on the cheap like Rick Cesari of Cesari Direct. Even now that his company has grown and is thriving, he cashes in his credit card points to use as gifts for his employees and customers: weekend hotel stays and event tickets are a big hit!
Rent or make do with used or found office equipment. Dave Ramsey often shares his start up story of beginning
his business on a card table in his living room. If attic furniture works, save money at every turn. We have a Salvation Army table in our office breakroom-25 years later.
Recycle those shipping supplies, and not at the local recycling plant. Nate Lipton of prospering Growers House keeps mailing costs down by using the shipping boxes that supplies come in to repack and ship his goods out. Don’t be too quick to throw boxes and mailing envelopes into the trash or recycle bin.
Don’t need posh office space? Then don’t waste money just for your ego. Rent is often one of the largest expenses a company faces. If you need to put on a sleek, high end look, find a way to share space and even staff as Hubsport of Boston did until they had 100 employees.
Deal sites can save hundreds. Utilize them for office supplies, furniture and employee perks.
Staff able to function in multiple rolls can save on payroll costs. Start ups are not the place for a ‘that’s not my job’ attitude. Employees are a huge expense so be sure you are getting the most from each one.
Save on consulting fees by doing your own research. Eric Casaburi of RetroFitness did parking lot traffic counts to determine if sites were busy enough to support a gym franchise. He estimates a savings of a hundred thousand a year in fees by sitting for hours at prospective locations.
Make saving money part of your culture. If you fly coach, your employees are much more likely to follow your lead. If you brown bag it or are careful with office supplies-your people will notice.
Starting your own business
Starting your own business can be an exciting goal. Being your own boss can also be the toughest thing you’ll ever do. It can take a lot of extra work to save dollars here and there but the lower you make your overhead, the greater the possibility you will be in the successful 50%. You know that group that whines about all the taxes you pay. Cause paying taxes means you’ve at least made a profit!
What about you? If you’ve been in business do you have any money saving tips we left out?
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