Top 10 Key Ingredients You Need to Start a Business

So you want to start a new business but are maybe feeling a little overwhelmed on how to go about it? Here are ten tips to consider that could help you be on your way:

A Good Idea

  • A good idea doesn’t necessarily have to be an original idea. It could be as tried and true as a pizzeria so long as you can do something better than your local competitors. Doing a regular thing in an exceptional way is as good if not better than trying to reinvent the wheel from scratch.

A Mission

  • What are you trying to fix in the world? Better customer service? A higher quality product? And for what purpose? Efficiency? Entertainment? Well being? Really focus on what it is you want to do for people and why.

Self-Knowledge

  • What’s your personality type? How do you work best? Are you more organized and methodical, or are you more creative and inclined to multi-task? Are you a people person, or are you best suited to run the show from behind a curtain? Knowing who you are and how you are the most productive will inform how you approach starting your business from the ground up. Take a few online personality tests to help you consider aspects of yourself you might not otherwise have thought about.

The Right Co-Founder

  • Ideally, you can collaborate with people who have sets of skills that you don’t possess. This way, you complement each other as you work toward common goals, each of you bringing something unique and constructive to the table.

A One-Line Pitch

  • You need to be able to sum up your vision with a simple one-line pitch. Boil your concept down into the most effective line you can think of. You will need to use this line when pitching your co-founders, investors, vendors and customers.

A Five-Year Plan

  • While it’s impossible to predict any market for any extended period of time, it’s crucial you come up with a five-year plan all the same. Doing so will challenge your concept and also illustrate to your co-founders and investors that you have a solid vision at work for the bigger picture.

A Six-Month Plan

  • If you can map out five years, then mapping out the next six months should be a piece of cake. Unlike your big picture plan, this six-month strategy is one you will actually need to follow very closely if you are to succeed. Within 6 months you should reach some obtainable goal that deals with actually acquiring or opening your business.

Focus

  • You have to make the time to realize your vision. Day in and day out you must be willing and able to stay committed to doing everything you can to achieve your goals. Try meditation or yoga to help you stay focused.

A Strong Network

  • Whether it’s friends, family, co-founders or investors, you need a team of people to support you in some way. Whether it’s monetarily or simply raising your morale, no one can go it alone when it comes to launching a new business venture. Surround yourself with optimistic and creative people to help you through the inevitable challenges that you’ll encounter.

One Customer

  • Who is your ideal customer? Who is that one person you’re creating this product or service for? It can be yourself or some composite of other people in your life. Point being, you need to constantly remind yourself who you are designing your business for in order to stay on track and remain faithful to your vision.

If you have all -- or even a majority -- of these ingredients as you start out, then you are in a really good place and your chances of success are certainly much higher than most other entrepreneurs.

Anna Barber, Strategy Coach at AnnaBarber.com, highlights the importance of a good idea, a mission and other necessities when launching a new business.