Thursday, September 15, 2005

Starting a Business on a Shoestring (well, maybe a fat shoestring)

Mellody Hobson, ABC's personal finance advisor, recently interviewed four women who started their own business with no more than $5,000. Although the interview was designed for women entrepeuneurs, the advice, as often is the case, was also of value to men interested in starting a business. Those interviewed indicated that experience was very valuable; emphasized that chances of success would be much greater with full-time commitment; noted the importance of identifying sources of equity (possibilities listed included taking money from savings, borrowing from a bank or other financial institution, borrowing from friends, family or other familiar people or effectively "issuing shares" in the new business) and researching whether your business idea is viable. Financial concerns included "salary" expectations, the cost of health insurance and the value of an identifiable office. Not mentioned but worthy of consideration was joining civic groups and/or the chamber of commerce both for networking opportunities and support as well as getting feedback from family or mentors about their level of enthusiasm for success for the proposed business.


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