The following exercises will help you in the starting of your new green business:
Inventory your assets
Make a list of your personal interests, your experience, your skills and anything else that you bring to the table. You should also consider your social network to figure out what assets you have among your business associates, family and friends.
Find solutions that can be turned into a profitable business
Operating a green business is not only a way to do something you love – you also need to make money. When you are considering whether your idea will make money or not, you need to have a business frame of mind.
Identify a need that your business will be able to fill
When you are brainstorming ideas for your business, consider these things: What opportunities currently exist in the marketplace? What are the problems that I try to solve around my home on a daily basis? What problems are my friends currently having?
Create a business plan
Now you need to make a written list of your goals for your business. Figure out your mission. This will basically be how you will provide solutions to your customers. Make note of the needs that you are trying to fill. Determine who the target demographic for your business will be. Make a list of some small objectives and set a time frame for when you hope to achieve them. Map out the strategies that you will implement to achieve the objectives you have just listed. Decide how you are going to market your product or service to the public. Finally, figure out how much money you will need to start your venture and where it will come from.
Create a business entity
Go through the normal channels when you are deciding what type of business you will start. You could start an S Corporation, partnership, a limited liability company, corporation or a cooperative. Make sure you are abiding by federal, state and local laws when setting up your business.
Financing your business
You have many choices in how to go about obtaining the money you need to get your business started, including non-profit and government grants, venture capitalists, angel inventors, selling your equity, small business loans and personal credit. Consider the positives and negatives of each option.
Create a prototype
Now you need to get your idea off the ground. Set up a focus group and see if the general public responds to your service or product. If the feedback is not positive, make the necessary changes.
Stay the course
Flexibility and patience are essential when starting a green business. Stay true to your initial vision, while also being prepared to stretch and bend when the situation calls for it.
Written by Beth Gadd:
Beth runs a small business in IT related field. She operates at home while also has her remote office set up recently. She believes having an executive office in central business area for meeting clients definitely helps to build the respectability of her business.