Beginning a business venture requires considerable thinking and planning, the more put in at the beginning, the fewer problems will occur later. Basing planning on previous information developed into science to follow strategy present a means of gaining in the future. Illustrations of how to start a business offer no help to those who have little skills or experiences most will say. You may think you are starting a business alone and there is no one out there listening, no offer of help or aid. Remember today we do not put thing things together ourselves, working through the problems and getting lost sleep only increases worries over decisions. It is understandable, but there is help from others, our modern world is filled with communications and I offer it to those who read.
The concept of business strategy is one of developing a series of layers to protect the organization and ownership from problems that may occur. In the articles I title Leadership, I am also presenting the concept of developing leaders from those willing to take the time to learn and understand this concept. Current I am writing about the bases of strategy and how the elements of such comprise the layers to complete the entire plan. These elements are already being used for military, diplomatic, and even major civilian organizations around the world. One degree of protection will not cover all areas, in time anyone of them can be removed. This means you need to protect both the business and yourself with many layers all interlaced and working in connection with the others. But it also means a review of these interlaced elements and concepts need to happen regularly.
The first layer of course is the type of business organization you want to build; this is the base structure of the business and sets the strategy for what else comes. Consider the business as any other investment, with longer times involved the more difference there is from where you started. Thus if you do not pick the right structure at the beginning, the longer you keep things going the more out of step with your needs it will get. The restructuring of this organization will take time and money, two major resources you should not be risking easily. Therefore careful examine all the naununcies involving each business structure needs to be considered prior to engaging with anyone of them. Only when the complete examination is done should you make decisions over which one.
The next should be both the financial controls and reporting of information you want to set-up, this is commonly called the accounting system. Integrate this to the standard banking system existing around us, while insuring limited access to accounts and outside reports that indicate if something has gone wrong. Remember those monthly statements the banks send out, use them to go over the accounts and insure the all reports are correct. If someone is doing something wrong it should show up very quickly and by using outside sources of information, less chances of it getting hidden. But this still does not excuse you the owner from not taking the time to look and insure all is correct. It is your organization, then you are expected to lead it not someone else.
The next layer involves both the legal and tax obligations you will have to encounter, a hassle for many to deal with. Well if you already have a business structure and financial accounts in mind then some of it is already covered. Take for instance a LLC structure protects the ownership as a corporation stockholder is protected. But it can increase the tax obligations, one does not necessarily aid in protection on both areas. The best help for this is to first look over information from the IRS website; the publications there have information about business structure as well as how and when to pay taxes. Next to this is the expensive route, get a professional attorney to assist you, but remember that will increase the cost of starting up. It should be noted as well there are no guarantees given by professionals should things go wrong. Remember they have used the same to protect their business and interest; you are the next customer their concerns come first.
Let’s take a quick note here, in all of this there are processes, forms and certifications to fill out. Do not do any of them until you have decided how you want to go through the entire process; remember to interlace all the elements. If you start out doing something, you may later decide to make changes and it could be too expensive then. For instance, when you fill for an Employee Identification Number with the IRS, wait until you first know what structure you want. Changes to this may not be acceptable later, most will need approval. From the very beginning start to write things down, take notes, working through them later again and again until you are certain what you want and how to get it arranged. This is especially true for contracts, partnerships, trademarks, patents, and any other long term considerations you have in mind. Once the process starts and the longer time is involved, the more complicated it will be to correct mistakes. Avoiding these mistakes and complications from the beginning is what the strategic planning is meant to do in the first place. Do it right from the beginning and keep it going is the easiest path.
Further information is available (of course from my articles) from your local commerce commission, better business bureau, and the Small Business Administration. And if you local library is able, they may have a private section for business books and information alone.
Contact: Michael Pulse MPulse@truth-things.biz Author of: The Truth of Things
Website: www.truth-things.biz CEO of Stone Rose LLC.