You need a business plan. It doesn’t have to be reams of paper bound together (and laminated and embossed in gold if you’re anything like me). A simple one/two page document forecasting growth, highlighting predicted busy and quiet times, plus a little on your cash flow is all you really need. Obviously not forgetting your initial idea and how to expand on it. When I wrote mine I imagined I was going to ask someone for a loan to help grow my business. I was also wearing a sick Chanel twinset in my scenario fantasy (but that’s personal preference).
You need a cash base. If you’re as anxious as I am (ok I have BPD so maybe you’re not quite as anxious) then you’ll need to head in to your new business venture with no money worries. I squirrelled away and saved enough money to cover myself for 3 months, just incase anything were to happen. There are always unexpected costs. I drank my way around coffee shops and fancy lunch places ‘working remotely’ and quickly realised that was not sustainable. I also got married shortly after I set up business so a lot of my savings were spent there. You never know what’s around the corner.
Go in with eyes open. When I started blogging full time, I quickly realised I was owed nothing from the digital space. Having fallen pregnant a couple of months after setting up, I knew my blog plans weren’t going to happen. I had to adjust. Some campaigns fell apart as my body needed maternity clothes and my growth stagnated as my content was all over the place with no real focus. Go in and understand you may need to adapt.
Shop around. Chances are you’ll be all guns blazing and will want all new stationary, the best website etc. You’ll suddenly be open to commercialism in a new way. I bought so many books because I thought I needed them. I became obsessed with ‘the perfect diary’ and ordered seven. What I’m saying is, don’t purchase the first website subscription you see, don’t buy a thousand business cards if you don’t go to meetings. Your money is precious.
Get an accountant. Having studied a year of Accounting and Finance at Uni (before switching to Marketing/Business) I understood in some depth how to manage accounts. But when it came to tax return time, I could not be bothered. £25 a month and you can let someone else do all the hard work (and have someone on hand to answer literally any business account query).