I registered my company when I was 21 years old, 5 months pregnant, and in the middle of writing my dissertation in 2013. In addition to finding out that I was dyslexic at university, I still decided to start my own business.
So first of all I am here to tell you that if you are waiting for the right circumstance, with all the resources, and the perfect business plan to get started in business, then stop waiting, book a business coaching session right away, with one of our coaches and let’s create a plan to get you started. I won’t guarantee that you are going to be successful but I can guarantee that once you get started, the lessons that you learn from just starting alone, will lead you to great success.
Yesterday I stepped out of my comfort zone and I jumped on Instagram Live for the first time along with Althea Blake from the ROOTS POD Academy and we spoke about our Journey of Entrepreneurship. This blog post aims to answer some of the questions from the Live and the main question that we didn’t get to answer in detail due to time.
Fortunately we live in a time that people regardless of their educational, ethnic, status or network people all over the world are able to start their own business selling either products or services with little or no money.
Below is a list of examples of how to get started in business without any money:
If you provide a service - speaking, teaching, coaching, counselling, consultancy, cleaning, childcare, hair, beauty, fitness, design, home improvement, cooking, your opinion or even a car parking space, etc.
Once you’ve decided on your service (idea):
Tap into your network who already have the location, space, equipment, tools, audience, customers, insurance, legal requirements etc. Whatever means you would need to run your business independently?
Ask to pilot your idea with your network's customer / client base?
In exchange for your pilot, can they give you feedback, can you collect testimonials, photos, videos or recommendations?
Offer to do this for free or in exchange for your time/ skills or expertise for something else that they are in need of?
If you want to sell products like clothes, food, fitness equipment, beauty products, skin care, travel items, toys, books, plants, subscription boxes, cakes etc.
Tap into your network and literally ask how they got started? Competition can be friendly and many successful people in various industries are happy to give advice on what they did.
Personally fund/crowdfund or get funding to produce an affordable or digital prototype and trial your audience with your minimal viable product (MVP).
Speak to your target audience and build your email list, subscription list, customer base and get them to pay upfront before spending a penny on the cost of sales.
Forecast well so you understand how many deposits, payment schedules that you need within a period of time so you can bulk buy, get a deal, negotiate sale and purchase after receiving the funds.
Anything is possible although not everything is. However perception is everything. Can you start small to fund your dream plan? Can you get a job working for the company that you want to later compete with so you can learn and identify how to do their job better? Are you concerned with being the CEO, the face of the business or would you be up for working with someone else who has the leverage, connections and finances that you need? Sometimes simply being open to working with other people, partnership and collaboration will enable you to see your business idea launch and grow quicker because you are doing it with others rather than by yourself.
Well I hope this was helpful.
If you are 16 - 25 and reading this in February 2021, then we will be answering this question and looking at the following topics (Intro into Business, Marketing, Business Finance, How to Pitch and Side Hustle Tips) in more detail during Enterprise Week (15 - 19th February 2021). You can register your attendance by clicking on this link and for the first time this is FREE!
As mentioned on the Insta Live you can get additional support from the links below. I have personally experienced support from all the below too:
School for Social Entrepreneurs (Applications to funding opens soon)
BYP - Connecting Black Professionals
Business Launchpad - Free Business support for young londoners under 30.
Unltd - Supporting Social Entrepreneurs across England
Foundervine - Helping founders and tech entrepreneurs grow their businesses
Books to read:
Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki
I would love to know in the comments what would you like another blog post / Insta Live to be on?
If you would benefit from exploring your business idea in a little more detail, we have limited affordable business coaching sessions available and you can book them here.
If you would like to stay up to date on what our social enterprise is up to, please do subscribe to NGC Newsletter here.