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4 Steps to Building a Small Business Foundation

By Sean M. Hugo, CPA

Small business owners should have a plan for the future when their business is starting out or in its infancy.  Businesses that know where they want to go have a much higher probability of getting to where they want to go than those businesses that don't have a plan for the future.

So how do you ensure your business goes far?

What do you Need to Have a Successful Small Business?

Starting a small business is a lot like constructing a building: if the building is a one story building it will require certain footings to be dug.  However, if you are going to build a 50 story building, it will require a completely different type of foundation.  How does this translate to your business?  If you want to grow your business to the point it has 100 employees and does tens of millions of dollars of sales a year you need to build a foundation in the beginning to support that type of business.

We are not saying that you need to start out with 100 employees and have a 20,000 sq ft office.  What we are saying is that you need to have the business foundations in place that it would take to run a company the size of your goal company on a relative scale to where you are currently.

#1 Finance

You don't have to go to business school to start a successful business. However, strategy and business are very closely related, so you might want to reach out for business mentoring from a more experienced entrepreneur or business strategist.

Making good, realistic, feasible plans for the short and long term will help you get far.

#2 Operations

It is crucial to deliver on your service or you will lose your new and hard-won customers. Make sure you have efficient processes in place, and always have a plan B (and C!) in case anything falls through: materials, labor, transportation, staffing. 

Don't forget to seek the advice of a business law expert to prevent cease-and-desist notices, lawsuits, or any other legal headaches.

#3 Accounting

There is a famous business maxim attributed to several gurus: "if you cannot measure it, you cannot improve on it." This is especially true for young, small businesses: you need the services of a good CPA to keep track of your expenses, your profit, and most especially of which investments yielded the biggest profit. Was it better packaging? More staff? Trainings?

The more data you have, the better you will be able to understand, tweak and improve your small business. 

#4 Marketing

Any business training worth its salt will include a good dose of marketing tips and techniques. Marketing is vital, since it is what will expose you to new markets and put you in everyone's mouth (and shopping list).

However, don't make the mistake of focusing so much on marketing and sales that you forget to nourish your team, deliver a great product, and do so in time and with a smile. 

Create the Right Foundation For Your Small Business

With the right foundations your small business can grow to be a huge multinational. All it takes is a good idea, a lot of hard work, and the right advice. Contact us, we'll be happy to support you as you reach for the stars!