If I'm thinking of starting a business, what should I do first?
Before you quit your job or print business cards, it is wise to take stock of personal considerations. Ask yourself:
- Do I have what it takes to be an entrepreneur?
- Am I a risk-taker?
- Do I have a grasp of basic financial and marketing principles?
- Am I resourceful and organized?
- Can I support myself and/or my family financially during the early stages of the venture when cash may be short?
- Will my family and friends be supportive during the start-up process?
- Am I knowledgeable and experienced enough in my chosen field?
If the answer to any of these questions is "no," you may want to focus on some form of self-improvement before proceeding. If most of your answers are 'yes,' then it is time to become a realist! Get as much information as you can on the feasibility of your idea and on the real experience of starting and managing any business. You can do this by:
- accessing business publications and data from the library,
- taking seminars and workshops,
- speaking to trade or professional groups which represent your chosen industry,
- consulting with people who are already in the same or similar line of business,
- and seeking advice from professional business consultants at the District of Columbia SBDC.
Also, take the time to review the Starting A Business section of our website. Then, contact the DCSBDC.