If you’re an entrepreneur or thinking about starting up a business of your own, you may be feeling overwhelmed. Running a business can be demanding, even in typical times, but your load can be lessened with the right practices while your results are improved. Follow these tips from New Startups for business resilience and success in today’s climate.
1. Form a Business Entity
If you haven’t already, now is a great time to give you and your business some protection by forming the right business entity. The type of entity you choose depends on a variety of factors and will determine how you are taxed, as well as your personal degree of liability. LLCs can be an excellent choice for new business owners, which you can file on your own using an online formation service like Zenbusiness.com.
Again, limited liability companies offer many perks, one of which is a layer of protection between your assets and your business that is reassuring in unpredictable times like these. There are also tax advantages with LLCs, including pass-through taxation and less paperwork. Regulations and annual filing requirements vary between states, though, so research yours before proceeding. Again, a service will alleviate much of the guesswork involved.
2. Employ Quality Workers
Everyone wants to have great employees, but finding and keeping them can be difficult. Broaden your search for hires by considering what jobs can be performed remotely. Moving out of the office setting has allowed many workers to adjust to working from home, and there are online job marketplaces that can help connect you to hundreds of quality hires in a matter of minutes. By using remote workers when you can, you allow yourself a much wider pool of potential workers to choose from, giving you more opportunities to find the right workers for your company.
The work doesn’t stop once they’re hired, though. To retain quality workers, you need to show them respect by openly communicating with them and listening to their suggestions and needs. Allow them what freedoms you can when it comes to telecommuting and scheduling. Finally, be conscious of company culture and cultivate an environment where workers feel valued and rewarded for their efforts.
3. Get Funding
Money makes the world go round, and this is no different for a small business. If you’re like most budding entrepreneurs, you may be funding your venture out of pocket or even getting yourself in debt (i.e., getting loans, by borrowing from family and friends, etc., using credit cards, etc.) to get your business off the ground — and maybe to keep it going until it becomes profitable (or at least, break-even). This goes without saying that going this route means you invariably take on more risks.
However, it’s a good idea also to be aware that there other ways to get funding. You can take on a partner or investors. You can apply for grants or approach angel investors. You can even leverage cryptocurrency. The point is, there is more than one way to fund a startup — take a look at New Startups’ many resources on this topic.
4. Hire an Accountant
If you don’t have a strong background in money management, an accountant is an investment that will get you a higher ROI than nearly anything else. According to Preferred CFO, poor understanding and management of cash flow accounted for 82% of why small businesses failed. You have to be aware of how much is being spent versus how much is coming in, and if you don’t have an employee dedicated to managing your finances, they can all too easily get out of control.
Alternatively, if your business is still a small one, you may be better served by the right financial tools, allowing you to complete payroll yourself and the like. For instance, if you choose this route, using a payroll template can help you record payments and tax withholdings accurately. You can then loop in your accountant or bookkeeper during tax time. Make sure your tools integrate with other administrative tools, like invoices, schedules, and time trackers for more streamlined financial reporting across the board.
5. Promote Your Business Effectively
No matter the quality of your product or service, you’ll never reach your business’s potential if you aren’t reaching potential customers. Those customers are on the internet, and that’s where you need to meet them. It isn’t enough to have a website and social media presence, although those things are important. You must also market effectively by investing in strategic online promotions that highlight your business’s strengths while getting you the connections you need.
You and your business can succeed even in these unprecedented times. Protect yourself by forming a business entity, employing and retaining trustworthy and qualified workers, hiring an accountant to keep your money flowing, and promoting your business to reach new customers. With the right care and attention, your business can emerge triumphant, a success story out of the difficulties that have rocked the world. Visit New Startups for startup mentoring and other resources.