When you buy from a small business, you are not helping a CEO buy a third vacation home. You are helping a little girl get dance lessons, a little boy get his team jersey, a mom put food on the table, a dad pay a mortgage or a student pay for college.” –Author Unknown

Having your own business, whether big or small, has always been associated with a risk.

However, if you just took the necessary measures and precautions to ensure that your business would flourish, you can leverage your business outcomes and even mitigate the likelihood of risks and failures. Unfortunately, many prospective business owners have long given up on the dream of opening up their own business for fear that the gamble might cause them more harm than good. However, as with any industry or business, it should start with a measure of risk but that should not deter you from pursuing your dream. If you have faith that what you would be able to provide would not only be profitable, but useful as well, go ahead and try your hand.

Sure, as with anyone taking on a significant investment, fear would be involved. But do not let that cripple you. Instead, take a leaf out of a seasoned entrepreneur’s advice book and survey the different strategies you can use in starting your small business. Although there is no ideal and perfect formula to ensuring it would succeed (starting a business involves a lot of learning and refining techniques along the way), these tips have been advocated by some of the biggest business magnates and corporation juggernauts—back when they were still in their humble beginnings. So, before going on ahead and taking that spot in a serviced office in Makati, here are some tips you might want to keep in mind for your business endeavor:

Address excuses

Being an entrepreneur has been the dream of many. Unfortunately, only a fraction of those dreamers would have the nerve to actually pursue that dream. The rest would simply justify their inaction with an excuse or their fears. From not having the financial resources to familial obligations, there is quite a myriad of excuses one can come up for not pursuing their dreams. Sure, relying on no one else for decisions but yourself might sound intimidating but this should not slow you down or impede your progress to reaching your goals. If you wish to start a business, address these reasons first. Find appropriate solutions so that they can no longer hold you back.

Absorb everything

Before pursuing that entrepreneurial endeavor, listen to what others have to say—whether that may be your friends, family and experts. Moreover, listen to yourself as well. Try to absorb whatever you can and learn as much as you can to refine your entrepreneurial goals. From there, you can start formulating the idea in your head. Lastly, observe and see if people are receptive to your idea. Read their body language and see if they like it. Are they simply being polite? Or do they display enthusiasm at the mention of the idea? Allow them to be honest with you and offer you an honest critique about your ideas. Remember, you should never ignore the importance of a seasoned entrepreneur’s advice. These veterans have already been there and would know what ideas would work and what would not. Learn from their experiences and incorporate them into your strategy.

Be a solution

Many budding and potential entrepreneurs make the mistake of thinking of what to sell rather than what to solve when it comes to a business idea. Sure, you can sell merchandise but it would be a lot easier to attract customers if your product or service seeks to solve an existing problem. Furthermore, gaining a solid customer base would be a lot easier should you fill a hole in a certain niche or market.

Keep it simple

The simpler and more straightforward an idea is, the better it would be for you. Much like any entrepreneur with a business concept, it can be easy to get lost in it and add way too many ideas—so much so that it would be hardly recognizable from when it was first conceived. This is something you ought to avoid. Keep it as simple as you can and avoid having it snowball into something that can potentially be overcomplicated. You want an end product that serves a purpose. Not something that is expensive and elaborate that no one would buy.

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“When you buy from a small business, you are not helping a CEO buy a third vacation home. You are helping a little girl get dance lessons, a little boy get his team jersey, a mom put food on the table, a dad pay a mortgage or a student...