Starting a Startup: Musts and Must-Not’s

Are you in the decision stage of creating a startup business? If so, you already know how tricky it can be to make an effective to-do list, complete with essential tasks and timelines for achieving each goal. One of the most challenging aspects of starting a new company, besides knowing what to do, is knowing what not to do. Most entrepreneurs begin the process by reworking their personal budgets to free up more cash for the business effort.

Additionally, it makes good sense to pay a reasonable fee for tax advice from a competent expert and to create a detailed two-year plan of daily operations. What should new owners avoid? Two potential pitfalls or the urge to launch before you’re ready and to delegate essential functions that you can do yourself. Consider the following points before going any further with your startup plans.

Must: Redo Your Personal Budget

It’s no secret that new organizations need capital to get off the ground. That’s one reason student loan refinancing makes so much sense for first-time entrepreneurs. Starting a business is a major lifestyle decision, and there are dozens of moving parts to the success puzzle. One of the essential pieces of the strategy is freeing up money from a personal budget so that the business doesn’t have to struggle.

The good news is that anyone who is still paying on college loans can refinance all the obligations into a single loan to lower monthly expenses immediately. Because most refi packages deliver more beneficial rates and repayment terms, borrowers win on two fronts. Not only do they get a simpler, less costly arrangement, but their startup gets a fresh influx of cash.

Must-Not: Launch Too Soon

It’s human nature to want to open the doors as soon as possible. Resist that impulse, and you’ll reap many benefits. Far too many startup companies fail because the owners launch before getting their finances in order, making a long-term operations plan, obtaining expert tax advice, studying the market, and deciding which tasks to delegate.

Must: Get Professional Tax Advice

Unless your specialty is tax accounting, invest in your business’s long-term stability by getting expert advice about how to file the appropriate tax returns, when to file them, and how to minimize the total expense. CPAs (certified public accountants) who specialize in taxation matters for small and newer companies charge modest fees and can usually cover all the bases in one or two one-hour sessions. 

Must-Not: Over-Delegate

Avoid the temptation to outsource too many tasks. Consider hanging on to the ones you can accomplish on your own within a regular workday. Only delegate chores that require a specialized competency that you don’t possess. Candidates for outsourcing include tax preparation, IT security and data storage, website maintenance, and payroll.

Must: Develop a Two-Year Operations Plan

Devote time and effort to creating a detailed two-year plan. Include prospective sales and profit numbers, marketing plans, operational goals, and more. The aim is to use the document as a blueprint for the initial months of running the business. Plus, if you intend to apply for a small business loan during that time, lenders will ask to see the two-year plan.