A business’s first year is usually filled with much trial and error. This is a time of new beginnings and potential failures, big successes and unsuspecting disappointments. It’s natural to want your company to take off with flying colors, but the first year after launching your business may have more surprises in store for you than expected. However, this first year can be full of immeasurable growth opportunities if you implement specific patterns.
Leave Wiggle Room in Your Budget
I’m sure when you first began reading this post, your initial thoughts were about money, more specifically, how you can maximize your earnings and avoid bankruptcy. The best way to protect your profit is by leaving some wiggle room in your initial budget. It can be easy to grow excited as customers begin making purchases and you see a desire for your product. However, keep in mind the amount your business will be paying in taxes each quarter, money you must set aside for payroll and any additional business expenses that may arise.
In order to best prepare for any unforeseen circumstances, your business should leave lots of wiggle room in its budget for your first year. You can obviously reevaluate your financial situation down the road and modernize your budget, but getting a hold of your finances in your first year of business is the key to creating a long-lasting company.
Rely Heavily on Customer Feedback
Your first year of business is heavily dependent on the customer journey and overall satisfaction. If patrons are impressed with the business model, products and services, they will feel much more inclined to purchase from you again and tell their friends about you.
Social listening on media platforms is a great way to watch for customer feedback. These free platforms allow you to see what consumers are saying about you compared to your competitors. You can interact with them, offer them a coupon or incentive for leaving a review on Google, share their content about your company and more. Make sure you are actively listening to their opinions and using them to make your services better.
Determine the Type of Employees You Need
Startups do not often have the budget to hire an entire team. As the owner, you will most likely be wearing many different shoes and working yourself to exhaustion at times. The end goal is to have a thriving business full of employees so you can take a step back and enjoy the revenue of the company you built from the ground up. But you must do the dirty work in the beginning stages.
In your first year, you must determine which positions need filled the most. It is best to think of the areas you are not skilled in and develop a list from there. Also, make sure you have fully fleshed out what specific roles these positions would be responsible for so you can hire the best candidates for the job. Down the road you will be able to branch out a bit more and hire applicants for more niche positions.
There are countless ways businesses will have to prepare for their first year of existence. While entrepreneurs may think they’ve thought of all the risk factors for their company, they will find themselves encountering other potential issues they did not even know existed. However, it is all part of the journey. The best thing companies can do is create and accomplish a checklist of tasks that will gear them more towards success in their first year. If you are starting on this journey, I wish you the best of luck and look forward to hearing about your story.