Starting a business while in school
So, you are currently in school and want to start a business? Cool, you are not planning to put all your eggs in one basket. Gone are the days when a degree was all you needed to be successful. Starting a business while in school is great; it gives you the opportunity to fail forward while giving you immediate feedback on your service or product.
Starting a business is never easy! Here are a few tips to help you get started and stay on top of your game.
What is your idea?
To be honest, there is rarely anything new under the sun. It is either you’re building on an existing idea or you are creative and fortunate enough to do yours differently. Identifying your idea should not be difficult if you are aware that you have to look for problems first. What this means is, the problem you are trying to solve comes first and then a solution which results in your idea. This helps you build products/services which are in alignment to the needs of your target market.
What do you have?
You need to evaluate yourself, what are your strengths and weakness? What skills do you have to get your idea done? Do you have the technical know-how to achieve a good result? Do you have the time to see it through? These are some questions you need to ask yourself when performing a self-evaluation.
Do some research on your competitors
You need to check if there is someone already fulfilling the need you are trying to service. It is essential you understand your intended market and find out how you plan to differentiate your products/services in the market . You have to ask yourself, “What will make people patronize my products/services rather than those currently on the market?”
How do you intend to raise capital for your business?
Where do you intend to get funds for your business? Well, this should also be in your business plan. Here are some sources you can raise money from:
- Personal savings: You should have savings, everyone should!
- Donations from family and friends.
- Loans: check to see the types of loans available to you as a student and the general ones you’re eligible for.
The latter is not advisable unless in extreme circumstances and when there are no other sources of funds. However, you are not looking for so much, basically what will get you started and achieve some profit.
Advertise to your friends and coursemates
Well, what are friends for? Get your friends to spread the word via social media and even other school related platforms . Get the word out as soon as you much as you can. This way, you will also get candid feedback from your friends and other folks.