What Is The Best Business To Start?
So many people want to start their own business but finding the most promising business is one important and difficult question to answer. There are many approaches to this question but I personally have a simplified method which has worked fine for me and with some adaptation may also work well for others.
The approach balances the main factors that determine the success of the business. However, it really is most suitable for those who dislike, do not know or have no time for the standard academic approach. Nevertheless, it contains ample amount of sound business principles and experience-based intellects that should greatly improve the chances for success rather than just shooting from the hip.
The first thing is to research and brainstorm the largest list of potential businesses. Try to write down all the possible ventures you can find. Talk to a lot of people, attend seminars; in short, gather as much information as you can find. In doing this, have timeframe for completion of this stage along with reasonable budget. For those who could afford it, travelling to other countries to get ideas may be worth the expense. You can spot emerging trends or you may find something that you believe may work here.
In the first stage, you should be able to come up with a hundred or more options. Here, unless you are absolutely sure that it is not feasible for you, the business should be included for consideration. The most common limitation is financial but at this point you do not yet have sufficient information to determine when a venture’s capital requirements is beyond your reach unless it is obviously too costly like an airline.
Second is to go through a process of elimination. First try to get an estimate of the financial requirements as well as financing possibilities for the project. Learn also about the various government incentives, since this may possible impact the financing. Usually this is in the form of tax incentives. This may come in handy if you will be purchasing expensive equipment or supplies. It is also a boost to cash flow and net income, among other things.
Remember that your objective is just to eliminate the businesses that you could not possible fund. Since you have a large number of businesses to assess it just is not possible to have a feasibility study for each type of business, just go through secondary data or by asking people knowledgeable about the business. In many cases, just surfing the net or using the phone will give plenty of useful information.
The truth in assessing the financial feasibility is just the easiest part of the elimination process. Try to find out what it means to be running the business. In some cases, this is obvious. For example, if you want to go into the junk shop business, then you already are aware that you should not be picky about the ambiance and comfortable working conditions. But there are many situations where the problem is not apparent.
If you want to open a tarpaulin printing shop, then be sure you can bear the strong smell of solvents and ink. There are options to use another technology to minimize this, but there may be trade-offs like cost to take into account. In our case, I remember that one time we were decided on going into the landscaping business but when we attended a seminar on the topic, we were told that we have to spend a lot of time in the hot sun and in the forests looking for unusual plants to get or buy.
If you are prone to allergies or have asthma, then there a lot of business environments that may not be suitable. There are a multitude of such factors so try to find out what it will be like when you are operating that business.
Finally, after going through all the determinants that you can uncover easily and inexpensively, hopefully you would have narrowed down your search to a dozen or so businesses. Here is the time when you can factor in your passion. But in doing this, you must be aware that people are usually passionate about the same things. Due to the law of supply and demand, the most desirable ventures have the most number of competitors. The truth is, the most profitable businesses for those just starting are usually those where few people are passionate about. For many, it is safer bet to just make your passion into a hobby instead of a business. Still, it is your life, and it is you who will ultimately make the trade-offs between profits and happiness.
*Originally published by the Manila Bulletin, C-4, Sunday, June 18, 2017. Written by Ruben Anlacan, Jr. (President, BusinessCoach, Inc.) All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or copied without express written permission of the copyright holders.