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If I'm thinking of starting a business, what should I do first?

Answer :

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.

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