How to Keep Your Small Business Afloat During Its First Year

If you have started your own small business, that means that you have taken one of the biggest steps in your entire career. It takes a lot of courage, sleepless nights and an incredible amount of will to bring this dream to fruition. And we applaud you on that! However, starting is, well, just that. Only the first step. And there are many more to take.

The first year of running your own small business is probably going to be one of the most difficult periods of your life. The stress generally takes over and worrying about the survival of your dream becomes a daily activity. Many businesses do survive their first year, and you should definitely use that statistic to guide you. Now you just got to make sure yours does as well.

The Beginning and the End – Your Business Plan

Business plan

There is no doubt that luck will play a part in your success. Sometimes chance, incredible circumstances and some completely unrealistic turn of events will bring you incredible growth and prosperity. But you can’t really rely on that, can you? What you should do is welcome every opportunity while also having a solid and reliable business plan. Not only do you need to invest time into creating it, but you also need to follow it every day. The time you put into the original creation of the plan will be one of the best investments you can make.

There are Only Two Certainties in Life…

… death and taxes. And the latter is a more looming threat to your new business. When you start this roller coaster of an adventure, you already know that you will face many ups and downs. Some issues that come up will be more serious than others. Taxes fall into the category of very serious ones. If Al Capone couldn’t get out of them, you surely won’t, so don’t even try. The issue is that you can commit fraud, or tax evasion without even knowing it if you aren’t familiar with tax laws. They are complex and numerous which is why hiring a tax expert should be one of the first things on your to-do list. Recruit someone trustworthy who knows your business and let them take care of it, so you can focus on other challenges.

It’s All about the Money…

One thing that you need to know is that you will probably never have enough money. As the revenue rises so will the demands of the job, as well as your own ambitions and ideas for your business. So, let’s start with assuming that even if you had a limitless pot of gold, it won’t cover all of your needs, ideas and outrageous requests. What you should be doing instead is keeping a close watch on the money you do have. Plan for your necessary expenses, payroll, taxes, fees, distributors, and calculate the necessary profit. Always save up at least a portion of your income, for the rainy days, you will surely need it, it’s just the question of when.

Keep Up with Newest Trends

Trends

Most industries nowadays are changing rapidly. Social media is the best example. Instagram starts a new trend of going live, and suddenly there is a whole movement behind it. If you want, for example, to advertise a new opening of one of your stores, an Instagram live will get you way more attention than a news segment. No matter what business you run, if it’s shoes or nails or a hardware store, the trends are changing daily and it would be highly beneficial for you to keep track. If you don’t really know what the newest business trends are, hire someone who can assist you with it. Just make sure you aren’t missing out on any game-changers and losing your market share.

Check Up on Yourself from Time to Time

One thing that most articles won’t tell you is that small businesses rely heavily on the owner. That means that the way you are feeling – physically and mentally – will transfer in the numbers on your balance sheet very soon. Let’s say that you are so busy you don’t eat properly. In a while, you will probably get sick and your business won’t function without you. Or perhaps your anxiety is through the roof and you aren’t having fun while growing your business whatsoever. Your own issues are entangled with the success of your business and if you aren’t enjoying yourself your employees won’t enjoy working for you. Not to mention the energy your customers are going to get with an overworked boss and unhappy employees. Taking care of yourself means taking care of business, so keep that in mind.  

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