13 questions to ask before you start a small business


Deciding that you’re going to become an entrepreneur is exciting. Finally, you’ve had the great business idea you’ve been waiting for!

But, wait. Not so fast. How do you know your business idea will work as an actual business? How do you know if you’re actually ready for the hard work and personal stress that comes with entrepreneurship? Ask yourself these 13 questions before you start a small business, to make sure that you’ve got the right foundation for success.

  1. How well do I handle risk?
  2. How do I cope with stress?
  3. Do I have the support of my family and friends?
  4. Am I willing to work longer than usual to start my small business?
  5. Are my finances strong enough to support me if my small business doesn’t see income immediately?
  6. Do I have management or technical experience in a business similar to the business I want to start?
  7. How well do I lead or manage others?
  8. Do I have any accounting or bookkeeping knowledge?
  9. What is most important to me in running a small business – making money or doing what I love?
  10. How adaptable am I?
  11. How do I make difficult decisions?
  12. Do I have a long-term plan for my small business?
  13. Do I have a business model?

If you’ve answered “no” to any of these questions, don’t lose heart! Knowing what you don’t know is important, and can help you determine the gaps in your knowledge. Training in entrepreneurship skills will also increase your odds of success. After all, nearly one half of all small businesses close within two years of start-up in Canada, so knowing as many business skills as you can will help reduce your risk.

For more, find out when a great business idea becomes a great business opportunity.

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