Tips for Your Fledgling Business

Starting a business is always a challenge for anyone but, if you are cash hungry and just starting out, your road to success often comes with some additional obstacles.

Some tips that can help you are

  1. Do Stuff Yourself

Even if money is essential, there are things you can do yourself that can help you avoid spending money. And if you come from a background of making things, even as a hobby, you know what creativity goes into each thing that you create. To help your business get off the ground and run well, will require more of your creativity.

Whether you have a regular income or not, you have to be creative and resourceful when it comes to running the business. Starting by doing things yourself and avoiding spending money on one or the other of the normal startup expenses. Most obvious ones being web design, the basics of marketing, and other tech skills.

These days with help from the internet there are many skills that can be self-taught quite fast. Spend some time and teach yourself a new skill that will compliment or help your business. You can also look at what a friend or other people around you can do in terms of skills and see if you can barter something with a skill that you require.

As a start-up, always try and mine some resources from your community and always mention your new business to the same community.

  1. Get in Touch and Stay in Touch

Join some groups on-line, follow some hash-tags and check and see if there is a local office near you that serves your needs. For example look out for resource centers or a Chamber of Commerce. Check for and attend trade fairs, themed markets and expos so you can meet and make contacts with people that you can trade with or learn from.

Also, do not forget that old friend from Uni, a relative or a contact on social media. Tap into the expertise of those around you for help, and don’t be afraid to negotiate or barter when it comes to an expense you can’t avoid. Meet as many people as you can, in person or online that can put you in contact with potential buyers or employees. Or help you with some free resources.

  1. Learn Some Basic Accounting

Accounting is complicated, but one of the most basic things of business ownership is keeping track of all your invoices. If you can do this, you are putting your business on a good footing. The good news is that there are many simple invoicing templates available that are easy-to-use and can be customized to fit your business needs.

Aside from invoicing, keep in touch with your money spending and record all these too. When you have a record, you can easily get a quick view of how your business is doing at any specific time. You will know what you actually own, what you have in the bank and all the debts you have (if any).

Learn how to keep records so that you have an idea of the money your business has earned, how much of this you have spent and what the outstanding bills are. And remember, there are many resources on the web that can help guide you and that for now, it is not necessary to hire a professional accountant.

 

Kwachalelo

A Zambian site sharing quick read articles around work, money and adulting life with selective interviews and quotes.
The founder, editor and lead writer who left university with a good grasp of public administration, economics, money, banking and international relations is also qualified in journalism and creative writing. She has been published in Drum and The BBC Focus on Africa Magazine and has been featured in several local and international publications.
An avid bird watcher with an extraordinary fondness for chikanda ( a Zambian delicatessen that vegans and non-vegans world-wide are putting on their bucket list ) she often tweets in poetry and short prose @kwachalelo