Every great business has a story. The first seed that is planted into the entrepreneur’s mind can flourish into a successful company with the right tools and focus. So, we have come here to ask you: What will it take for you to start your business?
This question can be divided further into 7 questions, your 7steps to Success with your business:
Why, who, for whom, what, when, where and how. Sound simple enough? These simple questions have the capacity to facilitate a thorough exploration of what your business has the capacity to become, so that you both can fly and glide the winds of change and reach for the sky and beyond.
Let us begin.
Go through the questions at least five different times. Use a booklet to write down your responses to each question, and leave enough space after each question, so you can go back and write the next round of responses under each question. Leave about 5 spaces for each question. Try to fill in a new space for each question without letting the previous answers influence the new one. This helps you test the limits, possibilities, and creativity of your own mind. It will be quite interesting to see how often your new responses align with the old ones, and how often new awarenesses pop up that expand your initial perspective.
Rule #1: HAVE FUN
Rule #2: DO NOT JUDGE YOUR RESPONSE
Rule #3: BE WILLING TO BE ILLOGICAL, UNPREDICTABLE, AND WEIRD
Why do you want to start this business?
What is your inspiration and motivation for starting this?
(Please note this can be economic, spiritual, emotional, intellectual. Please do not try to have an “honorable” motivation – that is a judgement and a violation of rule #2.)
Simply write down the first things that come to mind. See if you can write down at least 3 responses.
Who will work in this business?
Who are those others?
Even if you don’t know their names yet, what are the talents and characteristics of the people who would be a contribution? What does the business require (activities, talents, roles, expertise)?
Sometimes you need a person with a certain title to be on board, one of the founding members, or an ambassador for the company, in order to give the business a level of prestige, it requires to make an impact. That could be a famous psychologist or a Nobel peace prize winner, depending on the business. Who will be involved is a great question. Write down at least 7 names or titles or talents or a combination of each.
For whom is the business? Who is the customer?
Who would benefit most from the services or products you plan to offer?
What demographics do they have?
What is the business about?
What exactly is the product or service?
What makes it unique?
What do you see it creating in the industry or world?
Is now the time to launch the business? Or is it in the future?
Why is now or then the perfect timing to open the business?
How long will it last? Is it a temporary project?
What phases will it have?
When does each phase begin and end?
Often, how much time something takes is not relevant, but timing can be a great key to success.
Does it have a physical location?
Is it an online business?
Is the “where” you have decided an advantage or a limitation?
Might this be a pilot project in one location that then expands into multiple locations?
How will you start, get the word out, activate the functionality of the business, and move it to success?
What’s the plan and with each step what are the alternatives in case you encounter roadblocks?
These questions can be your 7steps to Success as they invite you to look at the business from a 360° approach.
You can also play with the sequence of the steps, changing the order in which you ask yourself these questions. You will discover how they feed into one another to create a more complete picture, a more flexible business plan, or a more accurate mission statement. For example: “how” you get the business moving will also be influenced by “who” will be working in the business, “when” and “what” their skills are.
Look at these questions one by one to begin with. Then go through them again, without referring to your previous answers. By the third round, you will see what a gift it is and how much more clarity you gain on your responses. You will be able to explore new possibilities which reveal themselves with each round of responses.
And here we come to the final part of this exercise.
We have discussed all the relevant questions to determine the business internally. But here are two other factors to take into consideration:
How will the business affect you personally?
How will the business affect external factors, i.e., the world, the people in your life, and similar businesses)?
In what priority would you like to place the above two factors? Go back and give one final round of responses to each of the questions with these factors in mind and see how your perception transforms!
When you already have a business, it is also important to recognize when it is time for a change, and these questions can help you ascertain that too. Sometimes we start a business and have collaborators that are very good at start-ups. At a certain point, a change in collaborators may be required in order to move the business to the next phase, new people with different talents that get the business going on a different level. And, often, it is important to recognize when it is time to close the business, start a new business, or expand the business.
These are all different energies, and it is important to ask questions at each step of the way to know whether you should move forward, maintain, or change tracks.
Business and entrepreneurial activity is an ever changing and dynamic endeavor. Are you ready to have more ease and clarity about which direction you desire to take?
Try the 7steps to Success and see what innovation or even confirmation they can bring to you and your business.