9 Hurdles to Clear When Starting a Business

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Hurdles to Clear When Starting a Business

There has never been a lower barrier to establishing a business. While any budding entrepreneur once required the backing of several established businesspeople in order to get anywhere, it’s now entirely possible to start a business from your own home without buying any specialist equipment or even studying for a qualification.

With that said, just because the barrier to entry is lower, that doesn’t mean starting a business itself is easy. There are plenty of obstacles you’ll have to get past if you want to get a business started, and even more, if you’re going to make that business successful in the long term. Here are 9 hurdles you’re going to need to clear before you start your very first business venture.

Hurdles to Clear When Starting a Business

1. Funding

Believe it or not, many businesses struggle at the funding level. This might be because their idea is just too radical or out there to attract investors, or it might be because they’re not going about applying for funding through the proper channels.

The fact is that there are many ways to fund a business; the most common is probably to approach investors for equity or to apply for a business loan from a bank or other loan provider. However, you can also use personal financing, like savings or even personal loans. Even if you find yourself without a lot of money but you still have a dream, loans for people on benefits can be of surprising help when you’re starting a business!

2. Ideas

Just like funding, having a great business idea is not as difficult as you might think it is. The process is simple: conduct market research, identify an underserved or under-represented niche and create a business that caters to that niche.

Hurdles to Clear When Starting a Business - Ideas

Of course, if it was that easy, everyone would be able to do it; the artistry and craft can be found in understanding how to exploit that niche and how to cater to the people within it. This isn’t easy, but bear this in mind: your business idea doesn’t need to be new. It just needs to be effective in order to succeed.

3. Products

Whatever your business is selling, it needs to be desirable and high-quality if you want people to buy it. That should go without saying, but a shocking number of businesses base their entire operations on shoddy or underwhelming products.

Here’s a simple fact: if your business is built around a weak product, then you’re not going to find success, no matter how well you run other aspects of the operation. Identifying your niche is only half the battle; you also need to make sure the product itself is worth buying, or you’ll quickly find that people abandon you in favour of your competitors.

4. Realism

Having realistic expectations as a business owner can be surprisingly difficult. Many business owners begin their ventures due to ambition and having a dream, which means that they can sometimes be blind to the realities of running a business on a day-to-day basis.

You should try to make sure that you’re always thinking of things in realistic terms if possible. Don’t let yourself drift away into flights of fancy; deal with what’s in front of you. This will make it easier for you to weather the slings and arrows of business.

5. Your website

On a less abstract philosophical level, a great website can be a serious hurdle for a business to clear. If you don’t have a good website, then your customers are going to wonder whether you’re a legitimate business which makes it difficult to attract customers.

your website

Think about it – if you’re researching a potential business solution for a problem, you’re almost certainly more likely to go for a business that has a well-crafted website, right? Aesthetic appeal, easy navigation, and mobile-friendly responsive design are all critical when it comes to building a great website for your business.

6. Work-life balance

You might not think you need to take work-life balance seriously as an entrepreneur, but trust us when we say that it can cause more problems than you might think. If you’ve got a family, then it is, of course, important to set aside as much time as you can to be with them, but even if you’re flying solo, you should make sure you’re looking after yourself. Getting enough sleep isn’t just important for your health; your business will benefit, too, because you’ll be making better and more logical decisions.

7. Growth

Once your business is up and running, you’ll likely face a lot of challenges when it comes to growing. Expanding your business and finding new areas to conquer can be difficult, especially when it feels like you’re successful enough already.

Growth

Trust us when we say, however, that complacency is the death of a great entrepreneur (in the business world, of course). Always keep your eye on potential opportunities for growth, because you’ll kick yourself if you somehow manage to miss one.

8. Rough times

Every single business will, at some point in its life, go through some rough times. Whether it’s because demand for your particular product or service is falling or because of some mistake you make (and it’s totally natural to make mistakes), you should expect to struggle through certain periods rather than coasting.

The mark of a great entrepreneur is how you deal with those problems, not whether you experience them at all. Face your problems realistically, but always be looking for solutions, and make sure you don’t catastrophise.

9. Staff

If you’re lucky enough that your business can take on extra staff, then this can be a hurdle in and of itself. Knowing who to hire can be extremely difficult; you’ll have to sift through hundreds if not thousands of submitted CVs, and you won’t be able to get the measure of a potential employee simply by looking at a few pieces of paper.

The interview process can be pretty gruelling, too. When it’s time to recruit staff, make sure you’re focusing on the process because hiring the wrong people can be extremely detrimental to running a successful business.

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