Best Business to Start
and How to Do It


Best Business to Start? Find the one that allows you to Live Your Passion. Only you are the one to decide which one that is.

To help you in your evaluation we will cover several areas: resources, business plan, marketing plan, and funding the business.

Before you can determine the best business to start or discuss the areas above, you should make a decision as to why you want to go into business. Are you going to build a business that will be an ongoing operation that will fully fund your retirement or do you want to supplement you own retirement income?



Fund Your Retirement

If you have determined that you want a business through which you can fund your retirement, then you should plan on working full-time for several years. Most likely, you can rollover your existing retirement savings to help you fund a least part of your start-up costs. There is a risk that your new business might not succeed and you may run out of money later on. Is it possible to be successful, but caution and careful planning is required.


Resources

There are a number of resources that are available to help you in your evaluation to find the best business to start. Here are a few examples:

  1. Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE)
  2. - Since being formed in 1964, SCORE "Counselors to America's Small Business" has helped 7.5 million small-business owners by providing counseling, training, and advice on a volunteer basis. It is America’s premier source of free and confidential small-business advice for entrepreneurs.

    It provides many “how-to” articles and business templates on its website. They can assist a small-business owner develop a business plan, increase his cash flow, improve marketing or many other aspects of business.

  3. Small-business Incubators
  4. - If you prefer a different approach, you can locate a small-business incubator, which is designed to specifically help start-up firms. The incubators are usually associated with colleges or universities. Some of the items they provide are:

    • Fee-based business support services, such as, telephone answering, bookkeeping, fax and copy machines, etc.
    • Group rates for health, life and other insurance plans.
    • Flexible space and leasing.
    • Business and technical advice.
    • Assistance in obtaining funding.
    • Networking with other entrepreneurs.

    One excellent example is the Louisiana Business & Technology Center, an integral part of the E. J. Ourso College of Business at Louisiana State University. It endeavors to enhance economic development in Louisiana through the support of existing small businesses and the development of new businesses.

    Their site states the following advantage to businesses: Ideally located on the LSU South Campus Research Park, the 25,000 square foot LBTC small business incubator provides office space and a friendly business environment for new business start-ups. By allowing the incubator to handle administrative details and overhead problems, the tenant companies can concentrate on operations, production, and marketing, three factors that directly affect success. The LBTC has worked with over 5,002 businesses and entrepreneurs developing over 2,394 business plans, starting nearly 479 businesses and creating more than 9,207 jobs for Louisiana.

  5. Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs)
  6. - The SBDC program is administered by the Small Business Administration (SBA) in cooperation with the educational facilities, federal, state and local government and the private sector. Management and technical assistance that is tailored to your needs can be obtained here. You can find more about the SBDC located nearest you at www.sba.gov/sdbc/.

  7. Free Courses
    - A number of free courses offered by the SBA are available at www.sba.gov/training/. They cover how to start small business, business management, financing, marketing, advertising, business planning tools, government contracting, risk management, cyber security, e-commerce and taxation.


Business Plan

Now that you are evaluating the possibility of business start up ideas, you need to determine what do you want to sell and why should anyone buy your product or service.

There are a number of elements that should be covered in a business plan including:

  • A description of your business idea and explanation why it is feasible in the current market.
  • Estimation of you start-up finances.
  • Estimation of when you will recoup your investment and begin showing a profit.
  • Identification of the challenges you face and describe a plan as to how you will overcome them.

Books are available at numerous locations on this subject or you can hire a consultant to assist you prepare your business plan.



Marketing Plan

Some of the items you should consider in determining how to market your product or service are:

  • Research your market to determine it size, number of potential customers, projected growth rate and industry environment.
  • Understand your competition.
  • Learn from your competition.
  • Protect yourself by proper use of copyrights and trademarks.



Funding Plan

Now that you have determined the best business to start, how do you plan to pay for it? You may plan to use part of your retirement savings as we discussed at the beginning of this page.

Another approach is to raise money to start business. If you are going to supplement your retirement income with your new business, you may not need to raise additional capital.

You should develop a budget for the first year and over a five year period. Be reasonable and truthful in your budget development. Your analysis of cash flow is critical to determine whether you will have enough capital to succeed.

Determining the best business to start is only part of the battle. There are many steps in the process, but you can succeed by following your passion to the fullest and getting assistance throughout the process.



Good Luck.


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