5 Things New Entrepreneurs Often Overlook Before Jumping In

So you’ve got a million (even billion) dollar business idea. With so many government incentives which focus on helping Singaporean businesses improve their competitiveness, this is a good chance to start your own business. Finally, you can start doing things on your own terms, in your own way.
 
But before you jump right in, wait! 70% of businesses fail before they reach their 9th year, sometimes due to factors that didn’t seem so important beforehand. So read this article first, which tells you the five things most new business owners miss out on when starting out on their own.

1. Incurring (and paying) unnecessary costs
It can get tough tracking expenses. When business is booming, there simply isn’t enough time; when business is lagging, it’s pretty painful watching costs build up while money isn’t coming in yet. So to avoid this, reduce your cash outlay upfront by taking advantage of the nine government grants currently available for businesses. With the PIC Scheme and other grants from WDA and SPRING, training costs, office equipment and project costs can be drastically reduced.  

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2. The mindset of yourself and others around you
Just a like a real baby, a new business consumes your entire life and possibly your entire being. And just like a newborn, its demands are endless and independent of night and day. Weekends are burnt, anniversaries and birthdays missed, lots of late nights… It is tempting to just create excuses to slack off! 
 
But when your reason for starting a business is overshadowed by all these excuses, it becomes very easy to lose momentum.

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3. Reaching out to the right people
With so many local brands jostling for attention, even franchise owners need to take marketing seriously. Never assume that a brand-name is enough for customers to come running to Tuas to find you. Make sure that they know how to find you, now that you know who your customers are.     

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4. Preparing yourself for a whirlpool of paperwork hell
It makes good business sense to have a sound paper trail for business transactions. This helps with reporting income, keeping track of fulfilled and unfulfilled orders, serves as proof of contract and more. However, when the barrage of contracts, invoices, and quotations come in, quick turnaround times, the pride and joy of small businesses, may be slowed. Don’t let yourself be drowned in a sea of messy paper trails, because it can and will build up to a point where it seems almost impossible to get ahead of again.

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5. How to know when it is time to let go of bad eggs
As your business grows, you have to continually evolve and expand to meet the demands of your clientele. However, such evolutions can be risky: how do you know if the giant rock that is the new business idea is a diamond in the rough or just a plain old stone? More importantly, when do you determine it is time to cut losses on the “rock” and move on?So, before starting on a brand new business idea, settle on an exit strategy. This will act as a baseline at which you can compare against your results objectively. 

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