Tag Archives: business

How to Build a Business Without Going into Debt

One of the greatest hurdles in building a business is capital, or lack thereof. A lack of capital and financial resources subsequently prompts aspiring entrepreneurs to believe that borrowing money is their only option. Of course, this belief is inaccurate. The pitfalls of going into debt are well-documented, but thankfully other alternatives do exist.

Build Gradually

Many ambitious and aspiring entrepreneurs aim to open their businesses as soon as possible. There is a certain excitement which often comes along with building a brand and starting a company. However, gradually building a business is one of the best ways to avoid going into debt. In many cases, this may require not giving up one’s day job until the business venture yields profit.

The process of building a business while still maintaining a day job may be initially frustrating and time-consuming. However, with patience, dedication, and consistency, the business will eventually become profitable. Following the generation of profit, the entrepreneur can then quit his or her day job. Gradually building a business is vastly more effective and beneficial than taking out loans and attempting to do everything at one time. Rome was not built in a day.

Know the Ins and Outs

Believe it or not, there are many aspiring entrepreneurs who want to go into business for themselves, yet lack critical knowledge. There are so many factors involved in starting a business; a business plan, budget, legal paperwork, website, proper management of funds, and sales tests are only the tip of the iceberg. Knowing the ins and outs means having a solid plan and being fully informed. So many people who want to go into business for themselves believe that simply borrowing money and spending during times of apparent necessity will help them. This is a common error which often engenders the downfall of businesses.

Hopeful entrepreneurs need to have their budgets in place and know exactly how much financial capital is needed to start their business.

Fund Your Own Business

At the end of the day, those who wish to go into business for themselves without also going into debt will have to fund their own enterprises. Thankfully, there are a variety of ways in which aspiring entrepreneurs can go about self-funding. Simply saving money is an option, although it can be time-consuming depending on the individual’s income and the costs of starting their business. In some cases, funding an enterprise purely through one’s own funds can take months, if not years, although it can still be done. Each hopeful business owner will have to decide whether or not this particular avenue is right for them.

However, saving money to fund one’s business is not the only option. Hopeful entrepreneurs can also consider pitching to an angel investor. Angel investors can be incredible assets for aspiring business owners, however, there are certain stipulations. True passion for the business, a solid execution plan, and awareness of the market are things which angels will look for before investing their money into a business.

A Final Word

Starting a successful enterprise is a tough venture. Starting a successful enterprise without going into any debt is even more challenging. However, with the proper preparation, knowledge, and expertise, it can be done.

 

Authored by Gabrielle Renee Seunagal

How to Become an Angel Investor

Angel investors are usually wealthy individuals who invest in startup companies and entrepreneurs. The aforementioned investments usually come with the expectation that the “angel” will receive his or her money back (and then some) as the company takes off. In some cases, the investments occur simply one time; in other situations, the “angel” may make repeated investments.

Investing is one of the most common ways for people to capitalize upon their wealth, thus earning more of it. However, there are usually certain stipulations and requirements for individuals who wish to become angel investors.

Secure the Proper Resources

Contrary to popular belief, becoming an angel investor is more complex than simply throwing large sums of money at businesses which are likely to succeed later on down the line. According to Investopedia, angel investors are required to have a net worth of at least one million dollars, notable assets, a minimal yearly income of $200,000, considerable, professional investing experience, and liberal amounts of time.

Another critical skill for angel investors is good judgment. Many entrepreneurs have ideas and ambitions, but a plan for execution is paramount. Learning about the background, vision, experience, and finances of the company founders will provide insight into whether or not an angel investor can expect to yield profit from their initial investment.

Be Willing to Take Calculated Risks

Approximately 50% of startup companies go out of business within the first few years of their inception. For this reason, angel investors should carefully consider which enterprises they want to put their money into. Moreover, “angels” should not invest money which they need for other purposes, such as retirement, savings, etc.

Patience is yet another virtue for any successful angel investor. In many cases, it takes years for angel investors to see a return on the funds they put into certain companies. Hence, individuals who expect to see immediate gains and profits should steer clear of angel investing.

A Final Word

One of the most critical things to remember about angel investing is the fact that there are no guarantees. While one “angel” puts hundreds of thousands of dollars into a company and regains millions over time, another “angel” could invest just as much money only to lose it all to an enterprise which ultimately fails. At the end of the day, this form of investing all comes down to evaluating the business and ultimately deciding whether or not making a particular investment is worth the capital.

 

Authored by Gabrielle Renee Seunagal

How to Pick the Right Career

An individual’s chosen career is a life-impacting and monumental decision. The occupation which one chooses will directly affect their income, opportunities, and quality of life. While some individuals naturally come across their careers, other people take more time before discovering their desired occupations. Both scenarios are OK; each person grows and develops at their own pace.

However, people who fall into the latter category will likely benefit from some advice regarding how to pick the right career. There are several critical factors to keep in mind. With the proper knowledge and guidance, the process of choosing the best career can be very insightful and inspirational.

Think about Yourself

Whether or not someone has a successful career largely depends upon themselves. This is why The Balance advises people to think about themselves, their hobbies, passions, interests, and strengths prior to deciding upon a certain career path. More often than not, the activities which someone enjoys recreationally are somewhat indicative of which occupations would be best for them. Self-assessment tests and career aptitude tests can also help people get an idea of which careers would prove to be most beneficial.

Consider Promotion and Prevention

Brazen explains that there are generally two types of professionals: promotion-based ones and prevention-based ones. As the name suggests, promotional-based professionals tend to focus on opportunities and have the “entrepreneurial spirit.” Conversely, prevention-based professionals tend to thrive in more traditional positions of employment. The majority of people either lean towards promotion-based or prevention-based professionalism; making this distinction can truly help people weed out which careers choices are not for them.

Make Sure Your Credentials are Up to Par

Different careers and occupations require different degrees and credentials. For this reason, people should be sure to research the educational requirements which are associated with their aspirational careers. If they have these credentials and are sure they’ve found their desired career, the person at hand can proceed. However, if the individual does not currently have the necessary degrees to pursue their desired career, going back to school or taking classes to earn the aforementioned credentials are options which should be considered.

Pinpoint Your Desired Lifestyle

Most individuals have a conscious idea of the lifestyle they wish to enjoy. Whether or not this wish comes to fruition greatly depends upon income and career choices. If the individual at hand has concerns that their career will not permit the lifestyle of their desires, then they have some decisions to make. Considering an additional source of income, higher ranks within their occupation, or even more prestigious credentials are options to consider if one’s current career does not provide the desired salary.

A Final Word

Deciding upon a career path is not easy, by any means. There are many opinions out there and different occupations are better for various lifestyles. Someone who likes to travel and go on adventures is likelier to thrive in a career which allows for remote work. Conversely, a person who opts for a more traditional lifestyle may find themselves better suited for a 9 to 5 or similar forms of employment.

At the end of the day, there is a suitable career path for everyone. Happy hunting!

 

Authored by Gabrielle Seunagal

 

How to Build A Personal Brand

As one advances in the world of business and entrepreneurship, there will come a point and time where he or she wishes to begin establishing their own personal brand. By definition, a personal brand is defined as “the practice of people marketing themselves and their careers as brands.”

In essence, an individual with their own personal brand is making a name for her or herself and setting themselves apart from others. Moreover, presentation, consistency, connections, and building trust also play integral roles in personal branding.

On the surface, this can appear quite nuanced, but a thorough breakdown of the various ways in which one can build a personal brand will make all the difference in the world for entrepreneurs at all levels.

Be Unique

As cliche as it may sound, one of the best steps towards building a personal brand involves taking advantage of the qualities which makes one unique and then marketing them accordingly. Entrepreneur does an excellent job of explaining this concept. Playing to your strengths, standing out in front of the crowd, and even vocalizing unorthodox viewpoints are critical parts of building your brand. In essence, your brand is you and people will associate what you choose to market with your image as a business person.

Determine Your Offered Service/Product

At the end of the day, the ultimate objective of building a personal brand centers around the promotion of one’s own business. For this reason, a concrete understanding of the offered service or product is paramount for both the entrepreneur and his/her customers. A personal brand is a living marketing strategy which draws customers in, thus persuading them to spend money on what the business has to offer. Furthermore, it is worth noting that personal brands should add value and stand out in the minds of potential and current consumers.

Build a Sizeable Following Base

Even after establishing a personal brand, connecting and sharing that brand with the rest of the world is so important. For this reason, building a sizeable following base can prove to be particularly beneficial, as explained by The Muse. In most cases, the best followings occur online and can be garnered via social media platforms, such as Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

Another upside of a sizeable following base comes in the form of word of mouth. Individuals who take a personal liking to an entrepreneur’s brand are likely to tell their friends and family about it. These people may, in turn, follow the entrepreneur on social media and/or purchase a product or service at one point or another or even ongoingly. In this day and age, an online presence is critical for those who wish to do well for themselves and reach great heights in the world of business.

A Final Word

Building a personal brand is a feat which requires time, energy, and in many cases, money. However, there are various levels and steps which often make forthcoming ones easier and less formidable. Many entrepreneurs spend years going through the process of building their personal brands and that’s ok. When it’s all said and done, as your personal brand grows, strengthens, and improves, so will your business.

 

Authored by Gabrielle Seunagal

How to Financially Prepare for a Job Resignation

One of the starkest realities regarding the professional world is that people often quit, or resign from, their jobs. This can happen for many reasons; sometimes people have to relocate, move across country, or a new opportunity presents itself. In other scenarios, the employee may be displeased with new management, the workplace environment, protocols, customers, etc. Regardless of the associated reasons, job resignations are simply inevitable parts of life.

However, there are right and wrong ways to go about resigning from a current position of employment. Job resignations furthermore require considerable financial preparations. These are very critical factors which working people should be aware of before telling their employers “I quit.”

Cover Your Bases

Despite the reasons tied to a job resignation, having one’s own bases covered is absolutely paramount, as affirmed by The Penny Hoarder. The individual who is going to resign should ideally have another job lined up, run a side business, or otherwise maintain income to replace their soon-to-be-gone revenue stream.

In addition to ongoing streams of income, people who are preparing to quit their jobs should also have a considerable amount of funds in their savings accounts. Financial experts generally recommend having at least three to six months of living expenses saved up, although some specialists are now advising individuals to put aside six months to one year’s worth of living costs.

Settle All Debts

One of the most common sources of financial hardship is unpaid debt. These debts can become especially problematic when someone leaves their job, thus cutting off a stream of income. For this reason, Mint advises that people completely pay off any and all debts which they may have incurred before going forth and exiting from their current jobs.

Try to Exit on Good Terms

Not everyone exits their jobs on amicable terms. In many cases, conflict with management, undesirable professional circumstances, and other related factors are determining motivators behind a person’s decision to quit their job. Even under the aforementioned circumstances, The Balance still advises individuals against badmouthing their soon-to-be former employers or otherwise burning professional bridges.

In many cases, new employers consult the former bosses of potential hires. For this reason, blasting a manager can easily backfire and even halt potential, forthcoming employment.

Try to Cut Back on Expenses

Even with a sizeable amount of saved funds and additional revenue streams, cutting back on incurred expenses is advisable, if at all possible. Ideally, people should not be dipping into their savings unless it’s absolutely necessary. However, not everyone has the means or flexibility to reduce their ongoing expenses. The cost of living is not cheap, by any means.

A Final Word

At the end of the day, each individual has to determine whether or not they are in a comfortable and financially safe position to quit their job. If a work environment is truly toxic or unhealthy, an employee should definitely escape and seek out financial prospects of a higher quality; the negative offshoots of a destructive work environment are well documented. However, most individuals will ultimately benefit from saving money, settling debts, leaving their jobs on good terms, and reducing current expenses, if at all possible.

 

Authored by Gabrielle Seunagal