Culture | Strategy

3 Essential Things Start-Ups Should Start Doing in 2017

The holidays continue to fade into the distance as 2017 moves along. Many start-up owners find little time to plan ahead at the end of a year and if that (ahem!) was you in late 2016, not to worry: you’ve still time to think about what you want out of the coming year.

So to help you get the ball moving, we’ve put together a list of three things we feel are essential for a start-up to do this year. Take a look below.

1. Revisit your business plan.

Does your original business plan still make sense for your current situation? Are you set and prepared for the long haul? Some of the things that should be part of your business plan include:

  • A business summary (what do you offer, what makes you different from competitors, etc.).
  • Financial projections.
  • A thorough description of your products and/or services.
  • A market analysis of your competitors.
  • A description of your marketing plan.

If you didn’t have to take out a business loan to start your business, you likely will want to at some point and you’re going to need a business plan to get that loan.

2. Monitor your monthly expenses.

In some important way, your “numbers” are living things: healthy numbers lead to a long-lived business while sick, ailing or neglected numbers can lead to closing up shop.

To keep on with the health analogy: it’s best to get a check-up with your physician once a year. Same with your numbers. How are you expenses? Do you know where your money goes? Where can you cut back? Where can you expand? Know your monthly income and outgo like the proverbial back of your hand: your business’ life could depend on it.

3. Shop around.

In other words, negotiate, negotiate, negotiate!

You undoubtedly have all or some of the following for your business:

  • Insurance policy
  • Credit card(s)
  • Bank
  • Suppliers
  • Vendors

When was the last time you did a little research on their competitors? Do so now and then, should you find better deals, call up your current vendors/suppliers, etc. and let them know if they can beat what you found in your research.

As you well know, retaining a customer is far easier – and less costly – than finding a new one, so your vendors/suppliers no doubt will be happy to come to some sort of agreement to keep you on their client list.

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