by Tom Cleveland, SmallBusinessLoansDirect.com
Every entrepreneur that has ever walked this earth has always asked if now is the right time to start. If there were an easy answer to this question, then more startups would exist, and the cry for innovation from financial “talking heads” as a cure for America’s current malaise would finally subside. An old market adage states that the best time to buy something is when no one else wants it, the general thought being that demand comes in cycles. Like the weather, if you wait long enough, things will change for the better. Better to be prepared early to take advantage of the upswing when it returns.
Economic growth may be flat-lining at present, needing only a good nudge in the right direction to spark a positive move, but the timing could never be better to complete your initial planning phase for your “dream”. It is a bit early in the process to be filling out a small business loan application, but that task may happen sooner than you think once you see your plan down on paper. Creating a new startup is not an easy task by any means. It requires commitment, a lot of hard work and sacrifice, and above all – perseverance. There are many articles on the Internet and in periodicals that will counsel you on “when to take the plunge”, but your overall effort will be guided by adhering to the “5 P’s” delineated below:
Yes, you must be passionate about your “idea” and making it become a market reality. Without passion, you will never be able to travel the rough road ahead. Your passion will drive you and others around you, but be sure to partner with people that are as enthusiastic as you are. You will neither have the time, nor patience, to motivate your staff and supporters if their attitudes run counter to your personal beliefs;
Now is the time to conduct a personal assessment of your abilities and psychological will power. Are you self-motivated? Does integrity fill your veins? Do you enjoy personal interactions with all kinds of personality types? Is your family prepared for your new “love affair”? Time will be in short supply as you move forward, and your people skills will be tested every day. Know what your strengths are and partner with others to cover your weaknesses;
Your planning phase must be thorough with financial projections that match up with your marketing view of the future. Evaluate your capital funding position and determine if a small business loan application makes sense;
You must have the resolve to push forward, even when times are tough, but also to be flexible enough to modify your strategy based on a changing marketplace. The products offered by successful business owners rarely match up totally with their original conceptions;
Lastly, you must focus on performance, the primary objective for every startup enterprise.
Tom Cleveland is a writer for SmallBusinessLoansDirect.com. He has over 30 years of experience in executive management, corporate governance and business development. Tom served as CFO for various Visa International entities from 1980 until his retirement in 1999 and was instrumental in expanding the global reach of the Visa system. Tom’s writing on business issues has appeared in the NY Daily News and BusinessInsider among others.