START YOUR OWN BUSINESS.
Set up your company and employ yourself? Some are natural-born entrepreneurs with a fantastic idea they turn into a successful new venture. Many want to earn more money or be their own boss. Some seek greater flexibility or a more favourable work-life balance. Many simply have no alternative, perhaps after losing their job.
Starting up a business can provide you with a more rewarding life, but there are no guarantees. Although start-up survival rate remains low in general, this does not necessarily applies to the educators.
However, the good news is many new businesses do survive and if you take care of key start-up tasks properly and in the right sequence, you can get your new venture off to a great start. If you have followed our guide on “Going Online” then you will find this page will have the answer on how to turn your online course to a business.
The following are key questions you have to answer:
- Deciding when to launch your new business
- Boosting your start-up knowledge
- Deciding who you’ll sell to — and how
- How to analyse your competitors
- Creating a brand
- Writing your business plan
- Registering your business
- Managing your business finances
If you’re thinking of starting up a business, you’ll first need to come up with a realistic idea that you can turn into a product or service which in our case is an online education, training, learning support, etc.. services. Find local support, including help with developing business ideas (For UK, on the National Enterprise Network).
DEVELOP YOUR IDEA
You might have already come up with an idea for a course and you think there’s a market for. The next stage is to set up your website as soon as possible. You do not wait till every page has been written down and designed, as soon as you can put the first working draft together you have to launch your site. This way your site starts getting indexed and building up traffic asap.
TURN YOUR IDEA INTO A BUSINESS
- Research your market – identify potential customers. Talk to them and find out if your idea is meeting a real need.
- Develop and plan – test your courses with real learners, make changes, and test it again.
- Find partners and suppliers – think about who you’re going to work with to develop and sell your idea.
- Set up your business – work out which legal structure is right for you, and whether you want to take partners.
- Get funding – explore different sources of business finance, from bank loans to government-backed schemes.
FEW KEY FACTORS:
The way the start-up entrepreneurs tell it, it is tricky to start a business at any time – not just during a recession – but if your particular business idea is so niche, so focussed, and so special (because is all about you and your knowledge and knowhow) that I suggest you shrug off the gloom and just get on with it now.
The upside of starting a business during a downturn is that things can only get better as the economic climate improves, and you will have learnt an awful lot in the difficult times that you can use in the easier ones.
Lots of people have a problem in finding their niche idea, but you (The Educators) already have your niche idea (your area of expertise). Why not start a business based on a need you yourself have come across, that is not properly addressed by existing suppliers? Keep it simple, and answer an in-your-face need. If you have got the need, and the idea, then come the operational problems.
Most homes and most students are already equipped with quite a lot of the tools any business needs to reach a worldwide audience from day one. A laptop and a mobile phone is all the infrastructure your new business needs to get up and running.
- Laptops can edit sound or movies, design software, and keep track of all the details of a start-up business at minimal cost.
- Internet connectivity allows a start-up entrepreneur to collaborate with video conferencing at almost no cost, an extraordinary breakthrough.
- The internet also enables a new business to reach a specific, even worldwide marketplace with a minimal outlay.
Now, what about funding?
Starting any kind of business always used to need money: from savings, relatives, angel investors, a bank loan. For several reasons, including the technology mentioned above, not having pots of cash is now much less of a problem than it used to be. Several of the start-up Educators I have met needed only time to get their business up and running and financial requirement is next to nothing.
JUST GET ON WITH IT!
FOLLOW YOUR INSTINCT!
FIND OUT MORE:
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