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First Steps to Start a Business

Starting a business is never easy, nor is success a guarantee. Confidence is important but so is an honest evaluation of your business plan, an understanding of the legal aspects of entrepreneurship and a realistic expectation of how your business will make money (and when). The following articles cover the critical first steps every entrepreneur should take before starting a business. For an overview of steps in starting a new business, you can download FindLaw's Guide to Starting a Business [pdf].

Developing a New Small Business Idea

A small business must follow certain processes and procedures to ensure the business is developed properly. Each stage of the development process requires attention and extreme detail. Brainstorming is the key to concept creation. You must also keep track of all the ideas that are generated. At this point all the ideas will be varied and potentially relevant. You must then review each idea to determine its appropriateness. Evaluate each idea and determine which one is most valuable and will generate the most profits.

Starting a Green Business

Starting a green business can be a rewarding and profitable experience. Some things you'll want to think about include developing an Environmental Management System to enable your organization to reduce its environmental impacts and increase its operating efficiency, complying with Environmental Regulations, conserving water, exploring green commuting options, reducing your business’s greenhouse gas emissions and more. From changing a light bulb and using recyclable products to installing energy efficient equipment and systems, every business can make simple changes that save energy costs and natural resources.

Finding a Niche

Most companies, whether big or small, direct their marketing to select niche audiences. Even the country's largest manufacturers target carefully pinpointed market segments to maximize the effectiveness of their programs. Taking on a new niche can be a low-risk way to grow your business. If you do target a new niche market, make sure that this niche does not conflict with your overall business plan.

Franchise Development and Financing

Starting a franchise company is not an easy or inexpensive process. There are a number of requirements you will have to meet and a few other things that, though not legally required, are also essential. For starters, you will be required to prepare a standard disclosure document for your franchise operation. This document, called the Uniform Franchise Offering Circular (UFOC) is required of all companies, by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), if they want to offer franchises for sale anywhere in the U.S.

Is Entrepreneurship for You?

There are many things to consider when deciding whether that there are many reasons not to start your own business. But for the right person, the advantages of business ownership far outweigh the risks. You will be your own boss with hard work and long hours directly benefit you, rather than increasing profits for someone else. Your earning and growth potential are far greater. Running a business provides endless challenge and opportunities for learning

Hiring a Business Attorney

The processes of starting a new business can be complex, but it isn't without reward. Purchasing an existing business means purchasing a pre-existing client base, staff, patents, and more-which can be a great financial advantage over starting your own business. Practiced business lawyers can also assist you in the process of selling or closing your business.

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