If I Started a New Business from Scratch
Updated: Dec 11, 2020
Don't have time to read? Listen here.
I have started and closed several businesses in my life. Each had multiple themes in common, and some have failed to produce fruit. Others were so successful it was difficult to turn them off once I was ready to move on. I have learned a ton from each business I've owned. If I had to start a business over again, I would make certain the following necessities were in place while getting started.
First, evaluate your time frames. How long can you survive without making any money? I can hear you already, “Kyra, what the heck do you mean, no money.” I mean NO MONEY. You don’t start turning a profit in any business for a little while. Therefore, is it a week, a month, are you starving now? It’s essential to think in terms of Now Money and Later Money.
What can you do today that will bring you an income? Even $5 is something. Start brainstorming. What is the #1 asset in what you do that will offer a solution to a common problem most people have?
Come up with ten things right now. I know you want to keep reading, don’t you? Stop, write down ten low-cost (to your customer) assets you can contribute today. Some low-cost ideas are five to 25 dollar offerings such as; short programs, done for you templates your business uses, memberships to tools you offer online, day-long classes, or retreats virtual or otherwise. Making people’s lives easier doesn’t have to cost you or them a lot of money.
You can also consider those things that are outside your brand or company that just bring in money. We call these things a side hustle. What are five side hustles you can do right now to bring in income? I can paint. If it ever came down to it, I would offer to paint someone’s room, space, or office. There is a fair amount of money in it, and it’s relaxing. I can create images in Canva for Facebook ads. I can clean a house, run errands, or buy groceries for people having difficulty getting out. You notice I didn’t say get a job.
When we work a job unless it’s part-time, we have difficulty getting our creativity moving with business ideas. This comes back to knowing yourself. I would prefer to work hard for myself than advance another person’s business I may or may not believe in. You may feel differently. You may need to work your job until you feel you have saved enough not to need to make money for at least six months. I wouldn’t recommend spending those savings and do whatever you can to keep money flowing.
Another form of Now Money is saving money. Look at all your finances and find out where you are leaking dollars. You may have some auto deductions for services you don’t use. There may be some people or things you are paying for that you can now do because you have the time and energy to do them. The caveat to this is professional services like accountants, lawyers, etc. I have had LegalShield for five years. It’s a legal subscription service, just in case I have questions. I’ve never used them. Twenty dollars per month, not once have I used them. However, I like knowing if I need them, they will be there. I have an accountant and a payroll service. These are all areas I can’t figure out on my own and don’t have the time and energy to learn. These are people I will keep.
Once the pandemic hit, Todd and I went through all our payouts. We eliminated extraneous items. We are already very frugal, so we didn’t cut much.
The first time we did cuts was when we closed our hypnosis practice several years ago. We had to whittle down expenses massively. We went from an income of $130,000 per year to $35,000 per year. We did it though, we found all the holes in our leaky boat and stayed afloat. It is honestly the same as making money. In my opinion, a penny saved is a dollar earned.
There is a danger of taking out things that make you feel good. We had to weigh the pros and cons of each item. Eating out was a massive money suck. When we had the hypnosis practice, we were eating out every night because we worked 10-12 hours per day and got home at 10 pm most evenings eating well into the night. It was a temporary stress reliever, and it was costly on our waistline and health. We knew eating out had to go.
But certain things like buying a video game every once and a while or a subscription to Netflix felt good. Art supplies and new tires for the bike were also terrific investments. Things that helped our mental health and education were also a plus. Getting a subscription to YouTube, so I wasn’t bombarded with commercials, and learning Korean Cooking has been a tremendous gift to us both. I could make costly dinners at home for a fraction of the cost. Therefore, we allow ourselves to buy anything from the grocery store we want, even if it seems expensive at first. Feeling fulfilled is the key to a healthy business. There must be a balance. Always.
This is all Now Money as far as I’m concerned. You will be surprised at how much you can save and do today to make sure your abundance is always flowing.
Later Money is all about your long-term projects, services, or products. These may be things that take some networking and lead generation. There is zero instant gratification in this. You have to be satisfied with eating two marshmallows later.
The Marshmallow Study at Stanford University in 1972. Children were put into a room and placed in front of them a single giant marshmallow. If they didn’t eat the marshmallow, they would get an additional marshmallow in 15 minutes. But they had to sit with this one marshmallow and not eat it. The children knew of the potential reward, and tho