Turning Opportunities into Realities
The first step in exploring whether you have a viable solution to one of your community’s problems is to plan.
What turns opportunities into a reality? All successful business owners are problem solvers. Whether the problems you solve are in dentistry, construction, plumbing, or reporting, your success depends on accurately identifying the problem to be solved and creating a solution that works. Opportunities to solve problems abound in a time of change. When the old way of doing things no longer works to meet the needs of the world, successful people see the opportunity to provide a new solution. Do you see an opportunity to solve a problem?
“For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’” (Luke 14:28).
Helpful tips for writing a business plan
- Keep it simple. Terry Looper, founder and CEO of Texon, a highly successful oil & gas company, says “If I can’t explain the economics of a business deal to an eighth-grader, I won’t do it.” Your business plan shouldn’t be overly complex. You need to understand it and make sure you can explain it to others.
- Get free help. For instance, many local colleges and universities have Small Business Development Centers to help you get started. Some will even help you write and revise your business plan for free. The Texas Workforce Commission also has available resources. There are plenty of sample business plans online.
- Don’t be myopic. Invite criticism. Your great idea may get even better by getting honest feedback from others.
- Know your community and your market. Different solutions are needed for different communities.
- Know your risk and how to manage it. All businesses are exposed to some level of risk. Getting the right insurance and setting up a business entity are two great ways to limit your exposure.
Just as no man is an island, no business succeeds without a great team.
Your “inside” team will consist of your partners, investors and employees. These are the people who will be on the front lines in helping bring your solution to the market. Choose people for your team who are not only capable but committed to the vision you develop. Your “outside team” should include a qualified CPA, an experienced business lawyer, and a mentor that will coach you and provide critical feedback. I have told many clients, “do what you do best, and hire the rest.”
Focus on creating, refining and delivering your solution to the world. For example, a good CPA will help you not only manage and minimize your tax burden but can also help to provide you key feedback to be able to measure where you are succeeding and where you need to make some changes. Similarly, an experienced business attorney that has seen the inside of lots of business and can help you structure and plan to minimize risk and maximize opportunity in your current reality. Chose a mentor who has considerable business experience She doesn’t necessarily have to have experience with your particular solution. One of my mentors runs a lumber company!
Having a well-developed plan and the right team will position you for success in whatever solution you create to address the opportunities that continue to arise in our ever-changing world.
Texas Hill Country Business Lawyer
It is tempting when setting up a business to only cover how the profits will be shared. While that is an important decision, it’s not the only one a business owner should consider. As an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, so is good business planning to deal with the unforeseen challenges in starting, growing, and operating a successful business. If you’d like help bringing your business dreams to fruition, contact Greg Richards, an experienced Texas business lawyer.