1. Do you have any evidence that your idea will work?
We all have, what we consider to be, good ideas; however very few of us have actually looked into how successful those ideas would be if put into practise and built into a business plan. What evidence have you found that your idea will be a success? Do your research, seek the opinion of others and make sure you have evidence that will back your idea up. This is especially important if you are going to look for investors to help fund your venture.
2. Is the timing right?
Whilst it is true that if you deliberate for long enough, you’ll conclude that the timing will never be right; you also need to consider timings that will impact the success of your business. Consider the market you will be selling your business in, is there a best time to launch? Will you be burning bridges in your current role if you left? Have you had the time to create enough capital to get your new business up and running and still pay your daily bills? On the flip side of this, don’t leave it too long before you start. Trust your judgement and find a middle ground.
3. Have you got the funding?
Before you hand in your notice look into how much money will be needed to build your business. Create a realistic projection of the cash flow needed to put your business plan into action, compare it against the money you have saved and consider the funding you would have left to live on whilst you build your business. It could take numerous years before your business begins to turn a profit, or simply break even, is there enough money in your account for this?
4. What help will you need from others?
No person, no matter how fantastic they think they are, can build a business by themselves. Do you know the people who you would like to hire? Have you considered how many people you would need to hire? If you need investors have you spoken to them? Using the connections you’ve already made from networking, get in touch with people who will able to help you in your process of beginning a business. A few people to consider are those who might be able to build you a website, develop your brand or set you up with the relevant software packages.
5. Do you have a back-up plan?
Whilst it’s always advisable to have a positive outlook, are you realistically prepared for the worst case scenarios? If your business doesn’t succeed or you hit a bump in the road that delays your plans for the foreseeable future, do you have a plan to see you through? Whilst it may seem futile planning for failure, when beginning a business, you need to prepare for all eventualities!