5 questions to ask yourself before starting a business

Thinking about starting your own business? Before you begin your journey of entrepreneurship, here are some questions to consider.

1. What societal problem does your product or service solve?
Whether your product or service is an interruption to the technological world, or resolving an environmental and societal issue, you have to think about what gap it is filling in the market today. 

2. How are you going to fund your start-up?
Should your start-up be fully funded by investors or should it be invested with your own funds?

Investing with your own funds allows more freedom on decision-making. Start-up owners would have to think about how to stretch those funds wisely for the survival of the business, and also strategise on being cash flow positive and breaking even in the shortest time possible.

There are of course, benefits and setbacks, to being fully funded by investors. One benefit is that businesses can grow faster with more financial resources at their disposal. Start-ups will also be able to tap into the investor's wealth of knowledge and network. However, with external funding, start-up owners may have to give up a portion of their ownership in the company. 

3. How are you going to keep your business organised?
In this digital age, there are so many technological tools to choose from to keep your business organised. Many businesses use CRM systems to manage their contacts and potential leads. Other tools can range from cloud storages to task organisers, as well as accounting and financial tools to manage their day-to-day operations. 

4. What should your accountant be doing for you?
An accountant's role is more than just filing taxes, and advising you on the statutory regulations to abide by. 

Here are some traits to look out for when choosing the right accountant for you:

Organised: They have the right technological tools to keep them organised in order to maximise their productivity. 

Efficient: Your accountant should be able to save you time on the finances, in turn you should be able to focus on generating more leads, and your day-to-day operations. 

Flexibility: A good accountant embraces challenges and is adaptable to changes in the business environment. 

Help you to grow your business: Even though there are many accountants who have accumulated years of experience, the right accountant should be able to tap into his wealth of experience, ask the right questions and advise you on the next steps to take to ensure your business is on the right track.

5. Do you have the access to the right people that can help your company grow?
There are entrepreneurs who would prefer to be lone rangers, but at some point, the tasks at hand become too overwhelming to handle. If you really want your business to grow, you would need an "A" team to achieve your goals. 

So what kind of characteristics should you look for to build your "A" team?

Cultural Fit: The right hire envisions your mission, goals and values. Is this person passionate about your industry and how well do they interact with others?

Passion to learn: Hire people who want to learn. People who have a desire to learn, have a more competitive edge over your competition. 

Adaptable: A versatile employee is highly valued and crucial in the success of your business. To be adaptable is to be open to change. The person you're looking to hire must also be forward-looking and resourceful.

Calm: Will this person be able to handle stressful situations? The right hire should know how to be level-headed amidst the fast-paced working environment.