Starting a business

Starting a business: 10 tips to get you started

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1. Ask yourself what your strengths and weaknesses are

The very first thing is to make a personal assessment. What are my real motivations? What are my strengths and weaknesses? Do I have the necessary diplomas and know-how? Am I a good salesperson? Will I be able to convince? Am I a good manager? A good technician?

Once this analysis has been carried out, if you have detected shortcomings, you have to ask yourself how to remedy them”, explains Laurence Piganeau, head of expertise and legal service at BPI France (public investment bank).

2. Evaluate your financial situation carefully

Before embarking on the creation of a business , carefully study your financial situation. You will probably not be able to pay yourself the first year of creation. If you still live with your parents, the best thing is to stay there a little longer!

If you are in office, you have the possibility of requesting a part-time job for business creation . This can be a solution to keep part of your remuneration.

If you have no income and no one can host you, do you have savings that will allow you to meet the first fixed costs of the business?

3. Find associates

“ Young entrepreneurs often create a project together. And they are right, it is a formula that works! explains Laurence Piganeau. The complementarity of skills is a valuable asset when creating a business .

On the other hand, before you start, ask yourself the right questions: do you all have the same vision of the company? Are you in tune with its future development? What place does everyone want to have there? Who makes which decision?

Create your business with one or more partners: consult the classifieds of the French tech des Echos

4. Talk about your business creation project around you

Know how to listen to them and question yourself. A business leader must have a great capacity for adaptation.”

5. Create a business: get support

It is very important not to be left alone and to get help from the start of your project. Get closer to support organizations such as chambers of commerce and industry (CCI), chambers of trades and crafts, management shops or specific youth networks, such as MoovJee (see box), which offers a tutoring system between young creators and experienced entrepreneurs. Most are free or supported by public support schemes.

You can also try joining an incubator or a business and employment cooperative (CAE) . These structures allow you to test your life-size project without taking any risks. They exist throughout France.

Finally, if you are in contact with contractors, ask them for advice. There is great solidarity in the entrepreneurial community.

6. Take part in competitions for young entrepreneurs

“Many competitions are organized for young entrepreneurs . Don’t hesitate to participate, it’s a good way to make yourself known! You will be spotted by the media, invited to trade fairs, broadcasts… But be reactive because journalists are people in a hurry! You have to be able to respond quickly to their request,” says Laurence Piganeau.

7. Be very professional!

Your young age and, no doubt, your lack of professional experience must be compensated by the seriousness and professionalism with which you will prepare your business project.

8. Go bold a bit…

Take the lead! Identify the media that interest you and that can help you according to your activity. Find the right reporter and knock on their door. Do not hesitate to contact entrepreneurs who could open their network to you. Join entrepreneur clubs.

9. Do not be discouraged

It ‘s not easy to be an entrepreneur … Creating a business requires a lot of time and energy.

Know how to surround yourself with people (spouse, friends, family, associates, advisers, etc.) who believe in you and know how to boost you in difficult times.

10. Know when to stop

That said, even a failure is positive because creating a business is an experience that will allow you to bounce back. Having set up a business, even if it didn’t work out, is a real plus in a CV. Entrepreneurship is a quality sought after by recruiters,” concludes Laurence Piganeau.

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