Starting Businesses Small Has Its Own Advantages.
A journey of a thousand miles starts with a step. Starting a business just requires your first step. It’s not a rocket which requires that you have all the resources on board to start. Once the first step is taken, the next steps begin to move you closer and towards achieving your dream. It is always said that procrastination is the thief of time. Also, it is generally said that time is money. By these two statements, we can conclude that each time you procrastinate, you deny yourself of opportunity to make money. Procrastination will not only steal your time, it can steal your dream. You might have experienced a situation whereby you planned to do something and by reason of not taking appropriate steps, you just forgot about the idea only to realise that somebody is doing the same thing you had in mind initially. This life is all about seizing opportunities and making most of your available resources to get what you want.
There is beauty in starting businesses small. You may not have all the capital required to start your ideal business but you can start with something no matter how small it may be. The little capital you have is actually a seed in your hand. If you refuse to plant it, there is tendency that you will consume it. What some people spend on buying phones and other electronics gadgets is enough to start cottage businesses small. Still, they complain of not having money to start a business. You don’t need to start big. You can start small to grow big. If you wait till all lights are green, you will end up doing nothing. You should not be intimidated by other businesses which are already established. Some of the multinational companies we see today were businesses small in all ramifications yesteryears. Dangote Aliko, a business mogul in Africa once narrated in an interview how he started his businesses small. According to him, he started buying and selling cement when he noticed that the demand for cement was high due to massive construction and reconstruction which was going on then. Even though the scale of his business then was relatively small, he was able to develop strong business ethics and principles from there. Today, the same building material seller has grown to become the major player in the manufacturing of cement in Africa.
Everyone has to start somewhere and starting businesses small should not be a hindrance for you to aim high and accomplish grand business goals. In fact, if you want to build something big, you have to learn how to succeed in building something small. As a small-scale business owner, it is important that you identify the advantages or value of having a small business or company. This will help and guide you to find the leverage to succeed and become bigger in the future.
Benefits of Starting Businesses Small
Starting businesses small does have its advantages as you can see below:
Businesses small today have a great potential to create large scale immediate employment opportunities which is essential for solving widespread unemployment problems in our country. If the business is not big enough to employ other people, at least, it will provide immediate employment for the owner.
Starting businesses small requires small capital to start. There are some businesses one can actually start with low investment. If you sit down and properly evaluate your capital requirements, you will discover that you may not need as much capital you thought you need before you can take your business off ground. There are businesses you can start from your home. Such business helps you to maximize the use of your existing assets. The fact that you are using your apartment as operational base for your business does not mean that you will pay additional rent. It is also possible you have a personal computer or laptop, this can serve as an asset for your business too.
Several Small Opportunities
“Small opportunities are often the beginning of great enterprises”, said Demosthenes. When you start businesses small, you are in the best position to take up small opportunities which might not be profitable to large companies. A project of one million naira may be too small for a large company to embark on. Meanwhile such project is good enough for a young entrepreneur. You can imagine what will be your total turnover at the end of the year if you are able to win many small projects of that amount. Also, multinationals leverage on small business to execute their projects. Therefore, small businesses have a lot of opportunities to grasp within the economy which can make you a millionaire very fast.
Starting businesses small gives you limitless potential for growth. A small company can achieve as high as one thousand percent growth within a year. No multinational company can achieve this feat. Achieving up to fifty percent growth by any multinational company will be considered a huge success. That is why I strongly believe that economies will develop faster if starting businesses small can be encouraged. While investment of one million dollars by a multinational can generate few employments; assisting five hundred young entrepreneurs with good business plan with the same amount will generate more employment, increase our Gross Domestic Product and reduce crime rate.
Starting businesses small allows owners to have one on one relationship with staff and customers. This creates a sort of bonding between you and your staff and customers. Because you are close to them, you will have a better understanding of their needs and emotion. This will put you in a position to serve them better than the way large companies will do. You will enjoy both staff and customers’ loyalty which will translate to enhanced productivity and high customer retention rate.
Your overheads will be considerably low when compared to that of large companies. Large corporations have a lot of money tied down in fixed assets. They spend huge amount on recurrent expenses such as staff salaries, vehicle repairs and utility etc. Starting businesses small brings about low overheads and this will allow you to compete with big companies in term of pricing. You don’t need to overload the price of your product or service before you can recover or absorb your costs.
In large companies, everything has been reduced to processes and procedures which have to be followed. Before anything can be changed, it might involve having series of meetings before approval is granted. This bureaucratic system slows down decision making. This bureaucracy does not apply when you start businesses small. You are the owner of your business, possibly with other one or two partners. You can quickly agree on matters and effect necessary change. Some businesses fail because they cannot adapt to changes on time. We live in an ever changing environment; only businesses that can easily adapt to change will survive.
Large companies have several sections and departments such as Human Resources, Administration, Finance, Operations, Sales and Marketing. Each of these departments has its own peculiar problems which require attention. All the departments need to be well coordinated otherwise everything will fall apart. Settling disputes or thrashing out issues in large companies consume time and other resources. When you start businesses small, you are not encumbered with these problems. Your time can be used more productively.
When you start businesses small, you will be skilled in many areas relating to business. You have to do many things by yourself. You prospect to get new jobs; execute jobs; handle finance and carry out human resources functions. Being a small business owner prepares you adequately to master every facet of your business. Even though you hire professionals as your business grows, it won’t be that you don’t have the understanding of what they do.
You might have heard that no employer can make you rich. The statement is true. No employer will ever pay you what you are worth. Your employer is in a business and he wants to make profits from his investment. So, if your employer is paying you five thousand dollars as remuneration, the truth is that he is getter more than that amount from you. Otherwise, your service is not adding value to him. The reward of having your business can be fantastic. The motivation that you are the beneficiary of any reward that comes from starting businesses small helps you to produce maximally. You can never be your best if you are not satisfied with your job. When you see any employee complaining that he is not getting what he deserves in an organization, watch his productivity. The only place where you can get what you deserve is in your own business. This is one of the motivations that make people start their businesses small.
I remember when I was still working as an employee, I usually felt as if I was under house arrest. I would like to go out there for business opportunities, read business magazines but the time was not there for me. In one afternoon like that, I decided to use my break time to read an interesting business column in a Newspaper. The Managing Director suddenly opened the door and met me reading the Newspapers. He could not hide his anger by his reaction. I guessed he didn’t even look at the clock to know that it was a break time. That day, I knew my days as an employee was numbered. What am I saying? You can only enjoy freedom when you work for yourself. Working for yourself does not mean you have to become lazy; you will even have to do more but you have the privilege of determining your work schedule. In many occasion, I woke up in the night to work. It was my time schedule for the job and I actually enjoyed it.
If you look around you, you will see people who started their businesses small but are now great entrepreneurs today. This should be an encouragement to other people that they can start their businesses small and make it too.