Getting your business past the survival stage

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1. Starting up: a reality check

2. Evaluating your business idea

3. Your polar expedition: one chance to prepare

4. You: the deciding factor

5. Tips for success

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  • Welcome Intro RM/BHP Put hand up if Contemplating running First year? Beyond first year? Other? Internet novice? Internet medium experienced? Internet very experienced?
  • Welcome Intro RM/BHP Put hand up if Contemplating running First year? Beyond first year? Other? Internet novice? Internet medium experienced? Internet very experienced?
  • Welcome Intro RM/BHP Put hand up if Contemplating running First year? Beyond first year? Other? Internet novice? Internet medium experienced? Internet very experienced?
  • Getting your business past the survival stage

    1. 1. ‘ Getting your business past the survival stage’ Rory MccGwire Founder/Chief Executive BHP Information Solutions 8 September 2010, SAGE WORLD   © BHP Information Solutions 2010
    2. 2. Who’s here today? <ul><li>Only thinking about it </li></ul><ul><li>Pre-start </li></ul><ul><li>Launched, 1 st 12 months </li></ul><ul><li>Years 2,3,4 </li></ul><ul><li>5+ </li></ul><ul><li>Adviser </li></ul><ul><li>Other (eg employees) </li></ul>
    3. 3. Survival experience <ul><li>3i </li></ul><ul><li>Riza </li></ul><ul><li>BHP Information Solutions </li></ul><ul><li>and now…   </li></ul>
    4. 4. 400 linked local websites: Donuts
    5. 5. 1. Starting up: a reality check   2. Evaluating your business idea   3. Your polar expedition: one chance to prepare   4. You: the deciding factor 5. Tips for success Getting your business past the survival stage in 5 steps
    6. 6. 1. Starting up: a reality check a. Why will anyone buy from you? b. Committed customers on day one c. The great myth: you need a unique idea d. It’s like sport. What league is realistic for you? e. Get your wallet out and watch the queue form
    7. 7. To be a survivor… <ul><li>Be realistic about how difficult it may be to get customers to buy your product/service </li></ul><ul><li>Give customers a sufficient reason to buy from you: trial, speed, quality, flexibility, start-up charm, not price </li></ul>
    8. 8. 2. Evaluating your business idea a. How many target customers will you contact each week? b. What percentage of these will turn into sales? c. How much repeat business will you get? d. How much is your average sale worth?  Sales forecast e. Expenditure (direct costs, overheads) forecast f. Cashflow forecast, breakeven point, funding requirement
    9. 9. To be a survivor… <ul><li>Face up to your lack of resources: time, money </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t kid yourself about sales forecasts </li></ul><ul><li>Set out to build a business and a track record </li></ul>
    10. 10. 3. Your polar expedition: one chance to prepare a. Polar expedition? b. Business plans are helpful: identify issues, focus on priorities <ul><li>Product/service </li></ul><ul><li>Sales strategy </li></ul><ul><li>Costs </li></ul><ul><li>Personal expenses </li></ul><ul><li>Cashflow </li></ul><ul><li>Finance, banking </li></ul><ul><li>Accounting </li></ul><ul><li>Workplace </li></ul><ul><li>Operational issues </li></ul><ul><li>(e.g. delivery) </li></ul><ul><li>Legal, tax (e.g. business form, VAT, NI) </li></ul><ul><li>Advice* </li></ul>
    11. 11. To be a survivor… <ul><li>Be prepared, so your polar expedition succeeds </li></ul><ul><li>Know the needs of your customers and have solutions ready to deliver </li></ul><ul><li>Use help, take advice, but choose who to listen to </li></ul>
    12. 12. 4. You: the deciding factor a. It is all down to you b. Match the challenge to your ability c. If you 100% believe, others will d. It can feel like climbing Everest e. Are you doing it for the right reasons?
    13. 13. To be a survivor… <ul><li>You (or your team) must ideally be: </li></ul><ul><li>self-starter, salesperson, responsible, hard working </li></ul><ul><li>Win the support of your family before you begin </li></ul><ul><li>Believe! </li></ul>
    14. 14. 5. Tips for success a . Expensive way to learn? b. Self-finance at first c. Credible team d. Stepping stones: reference site e. Overwhelmed? Stop, plan, break down tasks f. Focus on key opportunities g. Sell to decision-makers, with budgets h. Get a buddy
    15. 15. To be a survivor… <ul><li>Spot the obstacles quickly, then adjust </li></ul><ul><li>Focus on your objectives </li></ul><ul><li>Build on success </li></ul>
    16. 16. 1 . Starting up: a reality check   2. Evaluating your business idea   3. Your polar expedition: one chance to prepare   4. You: the deciding factor 5. Tips for success Getting your business past the survival stage
    17. 17. ‘ Getting your business past the survival stage’ www.StartUpDonut.co.uk www.MarketingDonut.co.uk www.LawDonut.co.uk www.ITdonut.co.uk www.EnterpriseNation.co.uk www.BusinessLink.co.uk  

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