I regret not exposing him to the world of practical business sooner. It could have given him an earlier start and saved him (and us) the expense of those college years.

How Do You Start?

So, how do you get started? It is very important to take some time to think about what you would enjoy doing. What are your interests? What are the things you feel strongly about? This is where you want to start. I believe the reason many people start one business, then drop it and go on to another, is that they never really assess what they want to do in the beginning. They might see a friend working at a business and think they would like to try it. When they get into it, they find it is not really right for them and quit. They might repeat this scenario many times, until they finally decide a home business is not for them.

Before you start your business, try to determine if there is a market for your product or service. In other words, try to determine if people are actually willing to spend money on what you want to offer. There are tools online that will help you determine how many people search for your particular type of product or service. Go to wordtracker.com and use their free trial. You can also check Amazon or your local bookstore to see if there are books written on the subject. Also, check the ads in magazines on the topic. If others are paying money to advertise and writing books on the subject, there is most likely a market for it.

Then you need to decide what type of business you want to pursue. There are different options, such as joining a company and selling their products (as a consultant or representative) or starting your own business from scratch. Everyone is different, so find what fits you. I have done both. I enjoyed owning an online bookstore for a time (I bought the store and was part of a company), and now I have my own business that I have built from scratch, helping others connect with home businesses that are legitimate and right for them. I do admit to favoring what I do now since I am able to run my business the way I want. It is more work to do it this way, but also more rewarding.

It Takes Time

One thing you need to realize is that building a successful business will take time. You will need to be diligent to stick with it even when it isn’t showing a profit. If you have a good product or service to offer that people want and are willing to spend money on, you will see your business grow and become successful. However, it will most likely not happen quickly. There will be times when things seem to be going great, and there will be times when you will wonder why you ever got into this in the first place. That is why, as I mentioned earlier, it is so important to choose something you are interested in. That can help you continue during the hard times.

A home business will require much less of an investment than a “brick and mortar” business (i.e., a business with a storefront), so it is much more appealing to those on a tighter budget. However, it still offers many of the same challenges and character lessons. There are several traits I have found to be essential in being a successful entrepreneur.

     •  Self-motivation: It is imperative that you can work on your own and keep yourself motivated.

     •  Risk taking: You’ll need to be willing to take some risk. Not everything will be laid out for you. You will need to take steps when you are unsure of what the outcome will be.

     •  Investment: Some financial investment will be necessary. It does not have to be a huge amount, but there will be some initial investment to make.

     •  Continual learning: It’s important to keep learning and growing with the current market. A willingness to learn new things is definitely an advantage when you’re in business for yourself.