5 I’s to consider before you start your business

I have been coaching and mentoring entrepreneurs and SME businesses for some years now. I have met a huge range of motivated and talented individuals with ideas for their business enterprise that cross many business sectors. There are no hard and fixed rules regarding a business idea but there ARE elements that many budding entrepreneurs seem to overlook or dismiss before they start the road to success.

Invariably entrepreneurs have some idea of strategy regarding sales, customers and marketing. Many more have objectives in mind to measure and quantify progress and others have a clear mission statement” but I would like to offer 5 tips that I have found to be invaluable considerations BEFORE the detailed planning and activities commence.

I have taken these from my book, An A-Z Introduction to Ethiconomics and regularly both present these topics to audiences and introduce my coaching assignments with them; I would advice that you give them some thought too – whether you are about to start a new venture or are in the process of reviewing your current operation;

1. Intent
Your intention in performing an action is the originating purpose of actually doing it, the end result that is desired or intended to be. Intent is your purpose – the big “Why?”. Before you start any venture be sure tat your overall purpose is clear. Your intent will steer your reality.

2. Imagination
Many entrepreneurs are aware of methods and practices that they have learned over years of experience in other fields. Many more have practical skills and qualifications; others have great motivation and energy. Regularly, however, they have forgotten how to use, or trust, their imagination. Be imaginative, be creative.

3. Inspiration
Essentially, do what inspires you. If you are working in an environment or role that does not, then change it! If you cannot change it, change something about it to incorporate elements that inspire you. Inspiration will drive you on and sustain you through the tricky times.

4. Investment
Many business owners see investment as purely an activity to raise funds – it is not. Invest in you. Invest in your own development – personal and professional. You are probably the greatest asset in your business so it makes sense to continue to invest in that asset if you want ongoing and improved returns from it. Train, read, learn, develop – invest in your self.

5. Innovation
Innovation is not restricted to product or service. Innovation is the key to sustained success. The World is changing quickly and at increasing rates so being innovative across ALL your business activities will be increasingly essential. Remember the other “I’s” above and innovate – if you don’t then your competitors will!

Once your intent is clear and you are creating business plans that inspire you, using your imagination and invested skills (learning, experience, training, development) you will find that your focus and motivation are heightened – how can they NOT be?! And then all you have to do is to remember to regularly review to ensure that you are innovative and adding value to your clients – and of course, value to yourself and your business venture.

Before you start, before you plan, before you spend – remember these 5 I’s.

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