Updated: May 19
Is this the year you are determined to set up your own business? Lush Wealth recently celebrated 15 years!
Our journey is yours to learn from! Here are some simple things you can do to get started in business.
Look out for the DO's to ensure you are not caught in the DONT's!
Whether it has always been your dream to be self-employed or you have simply had enough of your boss, there are a few key steps you need to take if you want to bring your vision to life and get your business off the ground.
Get clear on WHY you want to start your business
Before you devote any more energy and resources to your idea, it is worthwhile to consider why you want to become self-employed.
While the idea of being your own boss and having greater control over your earning potential is appealing, think about what other motivations you have to be in business.
This is important for two reasons:
If your motives are purely schedule and finance related, there may be other ways to achieve those goals (and these may well be quicker and easier to implement than starting your own business).
Once you are self-employed, you will encounter challenges that you never previously had as an employee. It can be a stressful and challenging rollercoaster ride and the only way to get through it and not give up is to have a resounding ‘Why’. A reason to keep pressing on, despite the obstacles coming your way.
Start with the business basics
If after giving thought to all the pros and cons of starting a business you are still inspired to step out on your own, it is time to start driving a few pegs into the ground:
DO - Be wary of who you trust. Listen to those red flags!
Secure your online presence: Before you register your business, you will first need to come up with a name. Take a look at the ASIC Business Name register to see whether the name you want is available. Next, check whether the URL and social media accounts with the same name are available too – you want to make it easy for your customers to find you!
Register your ABN: Once you have a trading name, you will need an Australian Business Number. Speak with your accountant about your business plans and get advice about the best business structure to begin with. Your accountant will also advise you whether you need to register for GST as part of the set-up process.
Get the right business insurance: Speak with your insurance broker, accountant and financial adviser to ensure you are adequately insured for the type of business you wish to run. Common insurances to begin with are Public Liability and Professional Indemnity insurance policies and life insurance.
Secure funding: Take a look at what costs are involved with getting your business off the ground and how you plan to pay for them before you have enough business income coming in. If you are planning on becoming a contractor or running a service based business, you may have little in the way of running costs to pay for. On the other hand, if you want to establish a bricks and mortar business there may be upfront costs you need to cover. In this case, speak with your accountant and finance broker to get advice regarding your options, before you attempt to apply for any loans on your own (and before taking drastic steps like quitting your job).
Legal Advice for women starting a business
Women can be too trusting of others, particularly when starting a business. If entering into business with a partner, seek legal advice. Partnerships can (and often do!) go wrong, like marriages.
Your business is not a charity and must make money. Protect yourself (and your family's assets) before considering your prospective partner's needs.
DO - get legal advice, If you can not afford legal advice you can not afford to go into business.
Dip your toes in the water
Now that you have the essentials taken care of, you can begin to dip your toes in the water and start bringing in some customers and getting a feel for the demand for your product or service. If you intend to keep your job while you work on getting your business off the ground, it helps to make a plan ahead of time for how you intend to juggle both.
DO - Get a great team of advisors on your side, including an accountant, lawyer and business coach. And then actually listen to their advice!
Consider how much time you need to spend working on and in the business and schedule it around your existing commitments. If you find yourself stretched too thin, take a look at what tasks you can delegate or outsource to free up some time (this goes for private and business related activities).
DO - Outsource as much as you can to experts
Do not become a slave to your business and employees
Your business should serve you. If your business is not paying you, it is merely an expensive hobby.
Protect your life partner (or business partner) if they offer to go into debt or finance your venture. Do the right thing and don't put them in this position without a legal agreement, some hard numbers and a timeframe.
If you're paying employees and can't afford to pay yourself, put a deadline on it. Don't go without an income, and do not skimp on your super (ok I will give you 1 year to get going!).
Be brutal with yourself. If it is not working, seek advice.
DO - Pay yourself ASAP and don't skimp on your super
Surround yourself with the right women and support team
You may find that your decision to start a business is met with mixed responses from friends and family members.
DO - Back yourself and refuse to be degraded by others
In an effort to protect you or help, they can sometimes seem to be overly negative or critical, coming up with potential problems rather than sharing in your joy and excitement. If this is the case, try not to get too discouraged and instead surround yourself by other people in business through online or in person networking groups. They will be much better positioned to offer practical advice and share in the ups and downs that are all part of the journey.
DON'T - let trolls, bullies, or loud people intimidate you. Your opinion is yours to express
Remember to work ‘on’ the business, not just ‘in’ the business
A common mistake many small business owners make is being so focused on customer service and admin that they forget to take a step back and take a strategic view of the business. It’s a mistake that can not only cost you in terms of missed opportunities, but it could also cost you your business.
Your accountant and financial adviser are key sources of support and information when it comes to strategically growing your business and your wealth and can help you with activities such as cashflow planning, diversifying your assets outside the business, tax planning and making sure you have adequate systems in place to support you with business growth without becoming your own bottleneck.
Becoming self employed can be a rewarding experience but knowing where to start can be a challenge. Having a great financial planner in your corner can make it easier to match up your personal finances with your business needs. As well as making sure that your money works just as hard as you (if not harder!). If you have any questions about starting a business, simply click here book an obligation free clarity call. We are always happy to help and want to see you thrive.
Our passion is helping women in business with their money. We are available to work with you in-person in Sydney, Newcastle or Australia-wide via video conference. To get started, book an obligation free clarity call.
What you need to know
This information is provided and produced by Lush Wealth Financial Advisors. The advice provided is general advice only as, in preparing it we did not take into account your investment objectives, financial situation or particular needs. Before making an investment decision on the basis of this advice, you should consider how appropriate the advice is to your particular investment needs, and objectives. You should also consider the relevant Product Disclosure Statement before making any decision relating to a financial product.