If you have the dream of starting a business, don’t let studying at college or university get in the way. Some of the greatest business ideas began while someone was in higher education – just look at Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook as an example.
If you want to get up and running during your studies, here are five steps to starting a business while at college:
Have a plan
As with any proposed business, an extensive amount of planning is a prerequisite. The wheels will quickly fall off if you jump in without a solid strategy.
This plan starts by putting in the research. Is there a gap in the market for your business idea? Will there be enough potential customers to make the idea viable? What competitors will you be up against? When you have positive answers for these questions, you can start moving forward with the business plan.
The right financing
Very few businesses can start with only a small amount of money. Combine this with the reputation of students being cash-strapped, and it may seem unrealistic to get a business off the ground while at college.
Fortunately, there is a solution in the form of financing. While there are various financing options available, one of the more convenient choices is a guarantor loan. As Now Loans reveals, a guarantor loan is a great choice for those with a less than stellar credit rating.
When working out your financing, it’s essential you get the numbers right. The last thing you want to do is start a business by tapping into your entire budget, then have nothing left for your operating costs.
Work around studying
Unless you’re making six-figures from the outset, studying should always take priority over your business. Due to this, you will have to work around your college work.
As flexibility will be required, it’s recommended to operate the company from your place of residence if possible. A dorm room or even spare room might not be the most ideal setting for a business, but it saves you having to travel around and lose precious time – and it also helps keep costs down.
Use the situation to your advantage
You’re at college. You may see this as a hindrance to your entrepreneurial dreams, but you need to view it in a positive light. First of all, consider the amount of potential customers available with your fellow students.
Advertising on campus with flyers and an exhibit stand is an easy way to get the word out – just remember to receive permission from the college first. It’s also simple to market through clubs and societies.
Don’t overdo it
Running a business is difficult. Completing a higher education course is difficult. Combine the two, and you have a situation that will require essentially all your time and effort. Even so, it’s important you avoid pushing too hard. Your wellbeing is the priority, which means you should still find time to exercise, eat well, and to fit in seven-to-eight hours of sleep each night.