Opening a Business

Most new businesses fail. If you start a business without knowing that fact, you are an idiot. If you start a business despite knowing that fact, you have at least one toe in reality, but you’re still going for your dream. There is a fine line, sometimes, between idiot and dreamer.

If you want to open a local business, you need to know the local market. If you don’t have a business idea yet, look around. Don’t assume that every item or service that is successful abroad will succeed here. But many imported ideas do take off. Do market research. Check out your competition. Talk to people, survey people. If possible, try selling your product on a small scale, and see how people respond. (As a young entrepreneur and a frozen fudge bar eater, I was surprised to discover that my customers preferred ice cream sandwiches.)

You don’t have to come up with a completely new product or a new service.

But your company has to offer something that makes you different. It can be the best customer service, or the lowest price, or the most convenience.

You should be able to explain (convincingly!) why your service or product is special.

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