Since the calendar has turned to 2014, people across the world have begun to embark on New Year’s resolutions that they’ve make to either start doing something to improve their lives or to quit something that’s been hindering them. What better time than the beginning of a new year for aspiring small business owners to actually put their money where their mouth is and finally launch a business they’ve been thinking about for a long time? If this describes you, consider these New Year’s resolution ideas for 2014 in which you can go from “aspiring” entrepreneur to “successful” business owner:
1) Create a formal business plan.
When asked about how they’ve achieved success, many small business owners immediately point to the solid business plans that they took the time to clearly lay out before taking the leap into business ownership. Business plans should contain a list of specific business goals, why these goals are reasonable, and specific steps on how they can be reached. These plans should also include a section with financial information about how much money is needed for the small business, along with well-thought-out profit projections.
2) Get feedback and take it seriously.
After you have a business plan and a good idea of how your small business would look in your mind, get feedback on your ideas from others. Consult with family members, friends, acquaintances, colleagues, and anyone who you think could offer some simple or complex input. Take into account any advice, ideas, or insight that others give you. Narrow-mindedness is something we’re all guilty of at times, so be sure to respect the feedback anyone offers. The most basic input from a neighbor can often be the most valuable. In addition to getting business feedback, ask others flat-out if they think you would make a good business owner.
3) Explore your small business legal/tax structure options.
Check out each option you have in terms of your business legal and tax structure. You may want to start out as a basic sole proprietorship or partnership. You could also look into an S corporation, a C corporation, or an LLC. If you feel you have more of a not-for-profit business plan, look into the structure of a non-profit and the various types of them offered by the IRS. Some of these business structures are pass-through entities, some are taxed directly at the corporate level, and some are tax-exempt. There are also legal formalities and requirements that go along with each structure. Choose the one that’s best for you.
4) Research all possible resources.
The great thing about having a spot in the small business space is that there is a long list of resources that are designed to support those in pursuit of the true American dream. With that said, it is essential to research these resources to find out which ones can benefit you the most. Many of these services are free or inexpensive. First-time business owners have to endure many unexpected twists and turns, so having a support team of experts around you is a must.
5) Complete the paperwork and make your first business transaction.
The ultimate New Year’s resolution for aspiring small business owners is to actually set up a legally-recognized small business entity. This means filing the paperwork with your state and putting your business on the map to make your first business transaction. The main thing is to have all your ducks in a row before embarking on this exciting adventure. Once you launch and start making money, all the hard work involved in the process will soon become well worth it. Nothing is better than being one of the many successful small business owners across America who are doing what they love.
For all of your small business startup, accounting, and IRS compliance needs, turn to the experts at 1-800Accountant today. Call the national tax and business consulting firm at 1-888-749-0117 or visit www.1-800Accountant.