How to step beyond the fear and start your own business

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Originally published via Inside Small Business

In a survey of over 1000 Australian non-business owners, the CGU Ambition Index found that more than half (53 per cent) had considered starting their own business in the past five years but had not acted on their ambition.

For 44 per cent of those surveyed, a fear of failure was the reason why they hadn’t chased their business dream.

With only six per cent of Australians owning their own business, there are a staggering amount of Aussies out there who are unable to take the next step towards fulfilling their career ambition. So how do you move beyond the fear of failure and turn that niggling voice in your head that says “Start your own business” into a reality?

Trust the voice in your head

In my case, I went from being a corporate accountant to the owner of an Ella Baché salon. While it may seem like a drastic career change, owning a beauty salon was something I had thought about for several years. The birth of my first child provided the impetus to change careers, as I was looking for flexibility and the opportunity to shape my own financial success.

Talk to the right people

Extensive research is critical for anyone thinking of starting their own business. Whether you are looking at starting a business from scratch or buying a franchise, you need to learn as much as possible about the industry you are interested in. Crunch the numbers to determine what the potential of the business really is, who your market will be, and what level of cashflow you will require while the business is growing.

I spent considerable time talking to existing Ella Baché franchise owners to get a feel for the business. I also went to some salons for treatments to learn more about the business. Conversely, I avoided telling all and sundry about my business plans, as I found that the more people I discussed my plans with, the more doubt it created in my own head. The point is to talk to the right people.

Have some savings

Banks will require you to have some savings before they will give you a business loan, so it’s a good idea to start saving early for your new business. In my case, we had saved up in order to have children and then my partner sold off a part of his business, which provided us with some collateral for the new business. Understand that it will take time to build your clientele and your profits, so you will need to have cash to operate the business as it grows. One of the mistakes I made initially was to hire more staff than I needed, so my advice would be to start small and employ staff as you need them as the business develops.

Be patient

It can take several years from the time you have the idea to start your own business to actually having it up and running. Once you’re operational, it can also take time to find the right staff. It took me a year to put the right staff in place and while this was frustrating, you have to be determined and patient as having a good team is critical to the success of your business.

Confidence

Finally, confidence and a belief in yourself are so important as you need to have the drive to keep going because in business you will experience challenges along with the great financial and lifestyle rewards.

Mandy Kaur, Owner, Ella Baché beauty salon at Westfield Doncaster

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