6 tips for starting a business on a shoe string
1. Work from home. It makes so much sense to work from home in the early stages, particularly if your business is largely desk-based. Start your day with a brisk walk, which has the effect of forcing you to leave the house, which mimics going to the office. This is a great time to mentally go through your to-do list and prepare for the day ahead.
2. Prioritise. Your time is too valuable to waste on anything other than driving your business forward. If you’re spending hours inputting data into spreadsheets to keep your finances up to date, stop right there, this is time you should be investing in winning new customers to really drive those numbers.
3. Learn for free. One thing we hear time and again, and agree with at the start, is that the business owner needs to wear every hat in their organisation. They feel, quite rightly, that they have to be able to do everything in the crucial early days. It, therefore, pays to get some training in a range of key areas of business.
4. Take advantage of low-cost cloud subscription software. Google and Amazon offer all the computing power and application storage you need. Use cloud financial services such as Xero/QBO and Futrli to get important insights to help you understand where you need to focus your energies. These will save you huge amounts of time in getting and staying on top of your financials.
5. Don’t outsource what you can easily do yourself. Cashflow is king, so you need to be so careful with whatever cash you have. In the beginning, as you grow your sales and your turnover, you should be doing all the jobs you can, yourself.
6. DIY prototypes. You can rent time and equipment to do the job yourself, and there are usually people who are willing to advise you, which can bring a sense of fun and community to the process.