I’m fed up, tired and frustrated with working for someone. Doing the same routine every day, week and even, every month…for the past 20 years!

I’ve had enough! For the past few months, I’ve been thinking of starting my own business.

Maybe, next year?

Does this sound familiar to some of you?

Well, if it does, here are some things that somehow seem to consume our thoughts…

1. Fear! Fear! Agggghhhh! Fear of the insecurity associated with making the decision.
2. Where will I get clients from?
3. Where will I find the money to start this?

Banks don’t want to take any risks in lending their money to start ups.

4. What do I know about running a business?
5. Can I make it on my own? Am I mentally prepared for this?
6. Who can I trust? I mean really, really trust to help see me through this?

These are just a few things that pass through our minds when we’re fearful of taking the plunge. But don’t worry…it’s natural to have such thoughts. We all did in the beginning.

But we should never stay in that place for too long. So here are a few tips to help get you past most of your paralysis.

1. Write out the real and objective reasons why you would want to start a business. Even, if you were doing it as a side hustle so far.

2. Create a checklist or set of actions leading to sound results that would move your ideas forward. Like preparing a plan to see how the business would be run across the fundamental pillars of the business. Finance, marketing and production, to name a few.

3. Do some research on the industry in which you wish to operate. Make sure that it leads you to designing and creating your business that distinguishes it from the others. Remember, businesses are created to solve consumers’ challenges or problems. Be innovative and investigate smart solutions wherever possible.

4. You would never have complete or perfect plans set in place before you actually activate the operations of your business. So, once you can get it to at least 80% readiness…then take the plunge!

5. Before you start though, gather your ‘inner circle’ of trusted advisors…ones you may need to contract. Most times, without prejudice, when you ‘ask’ people to assist you with guiding you through the process and they are not remunerated, their commitment is not necessarily at the level you require. That’s usually because they are just helping you in their spare time or as a favour. Although, they really mean well.

6. Finally, believe in yourself. Not out of mere self-belief but because of your gifts and talents that you bring to the table, that are relevant to the business. You must yearn to learn. Gaining knowledge through business training and advisory consultations from professionals, not just persons who are ‘successful ‘ in business, is invaluable. Just make sure you choose the right professional!

I hope these few suggestions help you ease into your decision. Only you and you alone, can know when you’re ready to make your move. However, if you need help talking though any of these, just contact us and we will be delighted to guide you on your path.

Send me your feedback with either comments, more suggestions or even how these suggestions helped you in any way.

By Olivet Hinds, COO, Dowell’s Advisory Services Inc.

 

It’s been more than 15 months as we continue to struggle through this pandemic season.

We have been challenged as never before to face and deal with:

1. Our personal relationships
2. Our business relationships
3. The next steps in our attempt to save our business
4. How to treat to the displacement of our employees and still retain talent
5. Re-engineering, re-positioning and re­ tooling our business processes to stay in the game.

The key to resolving all of these events lies in our response to each of them. That requires us to be calm, patient, thoughtful, innovative and action oriented.

Let’s explore how we respond to the business side of things. Remember, it is not what happens to us in life that matters, but how we respond to what happens to us, that’s what makes the difference!

If your business is closed right now and you are waiting for the Barbados economy to re­ open so that your business can be swept up in it, here are 5 actions or activities you may wish to consider as part of your plans in order to be ready.

1. We all need a Blueprint to guide our path. So, spend the time to really look over each pillar within your organization. Human resources; marketing; process flows; procedures and policies; security, information communications and technology, both internal and external. Even your legal structure. And don’t forget the important financial pillar.

2. Examine the need to pivot to a different delivery process to your customers. Or even determine if the demographics of your customer base have shifted materially.

3. Assess what cash and cash convertible assets are accessible to you. Check your 30 to 60-day liabilities as well. Use this to determine a 12-week rolling cash flow futurecast.

4. Have discussions with the key talent within your organization to see what, if any, things can be done, aside from the obvious paying of full salary, to both ease the financial pressure on their families while balancing any returns to your organization while doing so.

5. Stay mentally and physically active. Decide to either start or continue a weekly exercise routine. Involve your household if possible

and make it fun. If the exercise is outdoors, use the opportunity to keep your mind sharp by adding, subtracting, multiplying or dividing vehicle numbers on passing vehicle number plates. Or count the number of red cars you see along the way. Numeric exercises keep the dendrites in your brain alert and active.

I hope these few suggestions were useful and that you can actually apply them immediately.

Send me your feedback with either comments, more suggestions or even how these actions helped you in anyway.

By Oral R. Dowell CEO, Dowell’s Advisory Services Inc.