Small Business start up

May 15, 2018

So, you are thinking of taking the plunge and starting a new business venture.  Taking the first few steps on the path to entrepreneurship is exciting, risky and scary.  As you embark on your new venture, be sure you do your homework to minimize your exposure to risk, that will help take some of the uncertainty out of your start up.  Make sure you check all the boxes for the people you should consult, right at the beginning.

  • Banker
  • Accountant
  • Lawyer
  • Insurance Broker
  • Licensed Insolvency Trustee

Create your own success, develop a business plan that considers what will happen if everything goes just the way you expect as well as allowing contingencies for missed targets.  Get help from experienced professionals, talk to several business advisors who have owned and operated similar successful businesses.  Meet with peers in your industry and ask them about the strengths and weaknesses of your plan as well as the opportunities in the market.  Define your demographic and target it with a well planned and well executed marketing, advertising and networking plan.

After all of that you should be set, if you have allowed yourself appropriate margins in your plan, things should go reasonably well.  Yet, many new start ups don’t make it out of the first two years and for very good reason.  We all have different motivations for starting a small business, you love the autonomy, you have a fantastic idea, skill or service to offer or you have been downsized or laid off and you are hoping to create your own workplace stability.

The last category of entrepreneur is often the most at risk of giving up early, they may get a job offer that sure beats the irregular paycheque that comes with self employment.  Other new business owners get overwhelmed with the bureaucracy of business, filing tax returns and making tax payments erode time and impede income.  Administration can be a full-time job on its own, even for the simplest businesses.  You must be prepared to succeed, recheck your boxes, some of the professional services listed are costly, but by the same token they are invaluable.

Draw on all the expertise available to you and make a point of meeting with a Licensed Insolvency Trustee (“LIT”).  LITs are experts in insolvency law, they can advise you about not only what happens after you get into trouble but steps you can take to avoid getting into trouble in the first place.  During their careers most LITs are exposed to a wide range of small business owners and they have a lot of insight into the causes of problems and the pitfalls of being a business owner.  They are well positioned to advise you on how to protect your assets before they are put at risk in your business venture.

Don’t wait until it’s too late or until you are having financial problems before you meet with an LIT.  Our office provides free initial consultations and may charge a fee for service for lengthier meetings.  Call 519-646-2222 to arrange your consultation.