Starting a Business: Practical steps to consider

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Starting a Business: Practical steps to consider

Hi, so you’ve decided to make the big leap of faith and start your own business!

Excellent – here are a few tips to help you get started and a couple of things you’ll need to do to minimise the friction and drama. I’ll lay them out as bullet points to make it a bit clearer.

Let’s start at the beginning of the journey, where you lay down the foundations of your empire.

Foundations and building your Business Plan – the roadmap for your business 

Here are some of the things you’ll need to do or consider in the early stages and document in your Business Plan.

Business Canvas

  • First up, lay all your thoughts out on a Business Canvas. What’s a Business Canvas you ask? Glad you asked, good question. A Business Canvas is a visual representation of your business model. It lays out all the key strategic factors, presenting a general and complete overview of your business structure. This includes customers, income sources, competitors, SWOT’s and more.
  • Don’t panic – you don’t need to know all the details right now, but you do need to lay out the template so you can fill in the gaps ASAP. There’s a heap of free templates available so go nuts.

Structure

  • Legal structure: are you going to operate as a sole trader, company, or in a trust structure? Here’s where you talk to your accountant and solicitor to get the overview of business risk and the pros/cons of each option. Don’t guess.
  • Organisational structure: who do you need where to do what. Sometimes it’s just you doing (almost) everything which is an easy plan to draw – just add in your accountant and away you go. However, that’s not always the case and you also need to be looking 3 – 5 years ahead to think about who you need in your team then, so you can lay the groundwork for your future team now.

ABN/TFN/GST and other acronyms

  • You will need an ABN and a TFN – they’re both very easy to get, but you need to get your legal structure right first.
  • GST – think about this. If you plan on sales greater than $75k then register now, otherwise only register if you feel that the increase in your prices won’t hurt your sales. That way you get back the GST paid on expenses, which is a greater cash benefit than claiming it in your tax return.

Insurances/licenses

  • Talk with your local council first. They’ll have the list of permits you need at their level, and the contacts for any state or federal license requirements.

Collaborations

  • This includes networking groups, peer support and mentors.
  • They’re all a key part of building business success. Ideas, new clients, suppliers, support, joint ventures with allied businesses – all on tap.

Exit strategy

  • This is best planned now; this helps with your business structure and operational plans.

Systems and Processes – you need a strong base to operate from 

A way of producing excellent service on a consistent basis. This enables new team members to slot in smoothly and when you’re exiting the new owners can pick up where you left off.

Documentation

  • You need to document your processes around: 
    1. Marketing and sales
    2. Finance
    3. Production
  • You also need to set up platforms to take care of accounting and a CRM as a bare minimum. Make sure you’re open to innovate, the systems and processes you set in place now give your team the fallback comfort they need to be brave enough to look for better ways of doing business.

Kelby is a financial analysis expert and one of our Digital Solutions advisors. Learn more about the Digital Solutions program and how it can help your business here.

Starting a new business and seeking expert guidance so you can follow best practices? Book in for a free 15-minute consultation with Kelby here.

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