What type of business do you want? Products or services? Online or High Street? etc. You may already have your awesome business idea but think about this:
I think of business as either being ‘constrained’ or ‘unconstrained’. By this I mean their inherent capcity for growth. When I started my business, I didn’t want constraints – I wanted to grow and have unlimited opportunities. But, an open-ended business that sells bespoke and flexible services can become fatiguing – there is a sense that you never get “on top” of things because ideas, services and clients’ needs are ever changing and developing. What is your personaility type? If you like things to be controlled, ordered, sequenced and to fit into a ‘pigeon-hole’ then do you want to be selling, for example, graphic design services via the internet? If you crave variety and wish to create innovative solutions for a range of client types then do you really want a business selling mass-produced widgets in a small commercial factory?
Here are examples of businesses local to me that I really admire:
Surestart Autos (Product = repaired cars): a car garage providing servicing, repairs and MOTs. This is a constrained by its location. The clients’ visit the premises, the staff all work at the premises, all deliveries come to the premises and it’s all neatly contained. It’s also constrained by time – ie, there are only a finite number of cars that can be serviced in one day.
Tamburino Italian Restaurant (Product = eat-in meals): this place is always busy – it’s a constrained business and there is a finite amount of time and space for providing meals.
All Green (Product = recycling materials): this is a wholesale provider of recycling materials – eg food waste bags. It’s constrained by its premises – eg, there is a finite amount of space for stock but their products are sold online via Amazon – the client-base is potentially every household in the country; that’s unconstrained.
Guitar Tuition Somerset (services): This is a tutor providng 1-to-1 guitar lessons – it is constrained by time because there are only a fixed number of slots available in the week.
Proudhouse Property Management (management services): Lettings and Property Management – this is mostly unconstrained because the number of potential clients, locally and regional, is very high (there are 5 million rental properties in the UK).
When you’re starting a business, think about what you really want and where your awesome business idea fits in. Sure, any business can develop – the restaurant owner can open a second restaurant; the guitar tutor can create online video content, the wholesaler can obtain larger premises etc – but the inherent constraints of your business idea should be considered carefully before committing your savings, business loan etc. Make sure the inherent constraints of your business idea fit with your goals, ambition and personality type.
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