10 Truths of Business Ownership (first five posted today)

1.  There is no free money.  No matter what late night infomercial tells you, business grants, when they exist, usually are very specific to outcomes, such as job creation or industry-specific innovations. However, there are financial opportunities for small business with significant loan programs or venture financing.

 2  Just because Uncle Lou will buy your product, it doesn’t mean everyone will.  Neither does it mean that people won’t., but asking family and friends does not provide the marketing analysis your business plan needs. You must do impartial research to get the true marketing potential of your business. Historic data, primary research and professional consultants are available and can help in this process.

 2. You will not go fishing on the weekends.  Starting a business takes time … a lot of time.  New business owners eat, sleep and breathe their business. On average, new entrepreneurs spend more than 10 hours a day at work.  So while you may not go fishing or hit the links or catch the games as you used to, your schedule will eventually even out.

 3.  You must like working with people.  Your business will not succeed in a vacuum.  Even if you are a home-based business, your success will be partially based on how well you work with others. Vendors, suppliers, customers, partners and many others groups will be in constant contact with you as you go about your daily business. Make sure you have the necessary people skills.

 4.  Change is the only constant.  Business is in a constant state of flux.  You must stay on top of the trends in your industry as well as changes in daily operations.  Being an active participant in your trade association ensures you stay on top of what is new in your industry.  Trade associations also are a good source of data on customer profiles, marketing techniques and benchmarks.

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