Is This a Good Time to Start Your Business?

It’s not about taxes or any public policy, or economic statistics, or red tape. The right time to start your new business is …

  • When you think you can…
  • When you’re pretty sure people will buy what you want to sell…
  • When you understand the market… You know why people might make purchasing decisions, and where. That doesn’t mean, by the way, that you necessarily have some fancy expensive market research full of numbers and charts. It does mean that you understand the market.
  • When you have reasonable educated guesses about the basic numbers … You don’t have to correctly estimate future sales, by the way — nobody does — but you can’t have no idea. And you ought to have to have some reasonable estimate of real costs. Don’t forget your rent, overhead, and what you pay yourself.
  • When you have the resources you need…
  • When you’re not betting your life or your important relationships on business success.

5 thoughts on “Is This a Good Time to Start Your Business?

  1. Tim … nice idea.

    Ironically, I was thinking of counter-examples to each bullet point on the list as well.

    … just goes to show how difficult / subjective the decision to start a business can really be.

    This is a good topic on which your reflections are valuable (considering your perspective). I hope you write more about this.

  2. Tim’s post comes in the right timing when I came across a new business venture that I consider to start. I asked myself the following questions to see if this set of criterion:

    (1) When you think you can… >> Yes I believe I can. Although the venture’s something new to me, but it’s not totally unfamiliar to me. I think I have read quite a bit of resources about it since last 2 years, and the business just suit the lifestyle I would love to re-design to have..

    (2) When you’re pretty sure people will buy what you want to sell… >> I have no plan to compete in a crowded niche or to fight with pricing. But I think my prospects will benefit from the added value my team put in, and I see a lack in their marketing. Complimenting them on the area I intend to focus on will help to bring in more sales for them. And their customers’ life time value is high enough to cover my premium costs.

    (3) When you understand the market… You know why people might make purchasing decisions, and where. That doesn’t mean, by the way, that you necessarily have some fancy expensive market research full of numbers and charts. It does mean that you understand the market. >> I have no prior experience but I have been having an interest on the services I’d like to focus on. Plus I am working with an established partner in the field to leverage their reputation and knowledge about the market and technological trends.

    (4) When you have reasonable educated guesses about the basic numbers … You don’t have to correctly estimate future sales, by the way — nobody does — but you can’t have no idea. And you ought to have to have some reasonable estimate of real costs. Don’t forget your rent, overhead, and what you pay yourself. >> It’s to be consulting business, with minimal rent and overhead.

    (5) When you have the resources you need… >> The main supplier has kept a transparent menu for me, so I know the costs upfront. Their costs are not the cheapest, but are of better quality. Plus, once I’m more familiar with the field I venture in, there are plenty of suppliers who are fighting with low prices. So I guess I have taken some calculated risk on my costs and business expenses before starting the business.

    (6) When you’re not betting your life or your important relationships on business success. >> Nope, in fact when the who business kicks off successfully, I would have more quality time for my important relationships, friends and family.

    Cheers,
    Joseph from Singapore.

  3. You’re right. I really agree. It is important to know about the industry. The product itself is of course the most important and needs to find buyers. Very nice article.

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