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Home > How to Choose a Home Based Business >
Business Mistakes & Self-Employed Woman's Tips

Business Mistakes & Self-Employed Woman's Tips

The Self-Employed Woman’s "Tips of the Week" -

Know Your SCORE

A great resource for new or existing entrepreneurs is the Senior Core of Retired Executives, also known as SCORE. This national, nonprofit group was formed in 1964 to assist entrepreneurs through no-cost counseling and low-cost training workshops, and whose mission is "Dedicated to entrepreneurial education and the formation, growth, and success of small business nationwide."

SCORE is a resource partner of the U. S. Small Business Administration comprising 389 chapters throughout the U. S. and Puerto Rico whose

 
volunteer counselors are retired and actively employed small business owners, executives and business professionals who are experienced in all phases of business start-up and management operations. SCORE and Visa U .S. A. also have a series of free financial management workbooks, How to Secure Financing; How to Choose the Best Bank for Your Business; and How to Really Start Your Own Business. To find a SCORE chapter near you, Call (800) 634-0245; write 409 3rd St., SW, 6th Floor, Washington, DC 20024; or visit http://www.score.org

In your opinion, what are the most common mistakes people make who are starting a business?

· Not taking the time to plan their businesses. A business plan, even a simple one is worth the time it takes to write because it can help give you a "road map" or "blueprint" to follow.
· Not test marketing to see if your business product or service is in demand.

 

 

· Not having the background, training, and/or experience to start your business. Assess the skills and experience you presently have to bring to this business to see if you have the knowledge and skills your business idea will require. If you need more, enroll in courses or take a job in the industry to get first-hand experience.
· Inadequate marketing. Marketing is a daily task. Without it, your business will stagnate.
· Lack of professionalism. Just because you work from home, does not mean your promotional materials, business letters,or how you conduct your business should be haphazard.
· Lack of focus. From business plan, you should devise specific goals—short- and long-range—on which you can concentrate your efforts rather than wasting time and money on markets not interested or in need of your business’ products and/or services.
· Inadequate money management. You need to balance your expenses and profits to make sure you are operating as efficiently as possible, but spending wisely to promote your business and keep it growing. Regularly consulting with your accountant can help you set financial goals and parameters.
· Lack of "passion!" You will have to absolutely love your work because it will become an integral part of your life, occupying more hours than you ever imagined. Your "challenge," will be how to "pace" or balance your business’ activities with the personal relationships and activities in your life.

Business experts say the amount of time a new entrepreneur spends in researching a business idea relates directly to its success. Do not temper your enthusiasm in your desire to start your own business, but do force yourself to take all the time you need to thoroughly research and plan your idea. Your patience and willingness to do this will be much more likely to be rewarded by satisfying profits and doing work you enjoy than if you rush headlong into a venture that is much more likely to fail because you did not take the time to adequately prepare yourself for all the rigors that are required of a new business start-up!

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U. S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA )Internet Site for Government Contracts If you are interested in seeing if there is a possibility that your home/small business could obtain a government contract either with the federal government or by being a sub-contractor with a larger firm that has a present SBA contract, then check out the SBA PRO-NetÔ http://pro-net.sba.gov This site has access to the Commerce Business Daily, which daily posts 500 to 1,000 procurement-related notices, plus additional information on doing business with the government. You can also sign-up your own company to join the almost 175,000 other businesses in the database seeking federal, state, and private contracts. With the federal government seeking to increase its contracts with small businesses, you will want to take some time to see if your venture might qualify to be the recipient of government spending for your business’ goods and/or services.


Author Bio: Priscilla Y. Huff is an author/expert on women's entrepreneurship, and writes regularly for iVillage.com. Her latest book is "101 Best Home-Business Success Secrets for Women."

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