Text B How to Start Your Own Business
The paradox(悖论) of starting your own business lies in the simultaneous challenge and reward, making it an experience unlike any other. So many businesses fail, and most entrepreneurs exclude themselves from the possibility. The tragic reality is that when businesses fail, the passion often dies with it. By following some sound advice and being prepared for the process, you will decrease your chances of losing a lot more than you bargained for(期望). I have recently started a business and have learned some crucial lessons in the process that I feel privileged(=honored/lucky)to share with you.
1. Identify your motivation. Why do you want to start your own business? To have more time? To make more money? To be your own boss? To have creative control over what you love to do? Write out all of your motivating factors and prioritize them. When you see them listed, you might see a pattern(风格，特色)in that you're just unhappy at your current job and starting your own business isn't the answer.
2. Identify your passion. What do you love to do? What skills and knowledge do you uniquely bring to the table(拿得出手)? What gets you excited about your work? Keep that passion at the forefront of your business plan, your marketing strategies, and your daily routine. If you keep your passion in plain sight(显而易见), you will stay focused on the purpose of your business and not solely on the logistics(后勤).
3. Identify your market. If you are starting your business locally, research your competitors. Determine if there is room(余地，空间) in the market for your business. What will you do differently to draw in customers? What niche market are the other businesses missing? If you are starting an Internet company, research the requirements for your own unique Web presence. Your business cannot survive without customers, so do enough research on the front end to determine if there are enough potential clients to keep your business alive.
4. Identify your finances. If you have ever purchased a new home, you know that the financial obligations(债务)extend beyond the down payment and the mortgage. You have to buy furniture, trash cans, a garage door opener, light fixtures and landscaping equipment(景观美化设备), and before you know it, you've far exceeded your financial boundaries. That can happen just as easily in a business. Do exhaustive(详尽的)financial planning. Meet with a financial advisor or someone at your bank to examine the financial viability of your business and the process of getting it up and running. Plan wisely and do not assume the best about your business. Be prepared for financial loss and get advice on how to alleviate that burden in the future.
5. Identify your support system. Seek out advice from seasoned business owners, even those in your own field. Develop relationships with people who can offer sound(=right)advice and criticism that you might not see. If there is a business owner in your community or in your network that you aspire to model, examine his or her business practices and how they handle various situations. Ask for counsel before big decisions, and even create your own makeshift Board of Directors to help guide you in the planning and start-up process.
Once you have all of these elements in place(准备好), you are prepared to start the process of developing a business plan, applying for a license, establishing a marketing presence(营销实体), etc. Owning your own business can be unparalleled in the professional world, and if you surround yourself with wise counsel, you can have a career that daily feeds your passion.
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