Have you decided that you’d like to start your own business?  Would you like to become your own boss and work in your chosen trade as a freelancer?  Or would you just like a change?

If the answer to any of these is yes then I hope that I can offer a bit of help over the next few weeks with some notes on getting started in business.  My startup school starts here with business ideas, some thoughts on good practice and maybe some sparks of inspiration to help get you going!  Many of my learnings have been picked up from 6 years of starting and managing altspace Coworking Office.  Through this I have met and hosted hundreds of amazing businesses around Manchester and Cheshire.

So what’s your spark to get things going? Would you like more money, greater independence or a better work and life balance? I’m sorry to burst your bubble in week one but the three ambitions won’t work together unless you are incredibly lucky or a tech visionary!  Your underlying ambition should help give you some pointers on what an acceptable salary and working week and will look like.

From here we can move on to what your business should be centred on.

If like me in the early days you’re struggling for ideas then think along these lines….

  • What’s broken in your industry?  Think over inefficiencies, companies that aren’t delivering and anything that generally grinds your gears
  • Conversely what has given you joy recently?  Can it be adapted to your trade or launched in your postcode?  Imitation is the greatest form of flattery after all…
  • Read up on as many startups and business success stories that you can.  It needn’t be books or long and boring articles,  online pieces and blogs will all help to get some much needed drive from successful people
  • Get out and meet local entrepreneurs and learn from them, their insight can really help in the early days to polish a rough edged idea.  There will be a number of free networking events close to you that can be found on Eventbrite.

Once the idea has been drafted I’d recommend giving it time to develop.  Over the next few months you can iterate and change your concept before you commit to anything concrete.  This should be a really exciting phase so don’t rush it!