There are some of you out there who want to start a business. So you research your market, write a business plan and then get stalled. You want everything to be perfect so you obsess over the details.
The difference between “good enough” and perfect may cost you weeks or months of actually selling your product or service, time in which you could have been making money. Getting each detail to be perfect may stop you from ever starting your new business. If your product or service is not perfect, you still have the ability to make changes while you are actually in business. After all, think of all the products in the stores that are “new and improved.” These companies knew that selling something that was “good enough” would satisfy most of their consumers. Your product or service will likewise be good enough to get your business going even if it still has a few glitches.
To get yourself out of the “I’m waiting until it’s perfect” phase, try to think of what your perfect outcome would look like as opposed to what you have now. Can you live with fewer sales, fewer customers, a slightly different service or product? Probably yes. If you can’t, maybe being an entrepreneur won’t work for you. You don’t have the luxury of having everything run perfectly at the beginning of your start-up, no one does. You need to be the type of person who can solve business problems on the fly, because no matter how perfectly you plan things, something will go wrong or something that you never planned on will happen. So, let go of the notion that once you have launched the perfect product or service, that everything will go perfectly.
Decide at what point you can live with less than perfect and start taking steps to open your business. Create your corporation or limited liability company, consult with your team of professionals (an accountant, a lawyer, an insurance agent, and a banker). Learn what you will need to know to at least start your new business and take your experts’ advice to heart. Realize that you can and will make mistakes. Learn from your mistakes. If you can’t figure out on your own how to fix the mistake, go back to your team of professionals and ask for their analysis of what the problem is and how to fix it. Most new business owners try to do everything on their own (mostly because they don’t have the money to pay for advice). Asking advice from other business owners can be a cheap way of getting help. Why would they answer your questions and help you? If they are in a non-competing business, they know that you may be an expert in an area in which they are less knowledgeable and you can trade advice. You can also find help from owners of the same type of business if they are outside your area (either geographically or the type of market to whom you are selling). If you would prefer to pay for advice and you are short on cash, raise more capital so you can consult with experts for whom you must pay.
On the other hand, it is not smart to start your business when you are half-way through the planning stage. If you don’t have a working product or haven’t thought through who your target market is, your business may never get off the ground. There is a certain amount of planning that must be completed before you should start your business. But don’t postpone actually getting started until everything is “perfect.” You may never see that day. So, once you get to “good enough,” start your business.