If you are thinking of starting or buying a business, you probably don’t think of the money first. You’ll consider:
- What do I have experience in
- What am I good at
- What do I like to do
Great questions! But what do you know about what it would really take to make this business work? And what kind of financial resources would be needed?
How do you know what you don’t know, or don’t even know to ask?
Boats float, don’t they?
If I did not know any better, I’d think that boats float. Well, they do. But kayaks are skinny and tippy so we plan for the occasional capsize.
An upside-down boat will still float but to get back in you have to turn it over. And therein lies the problem with a kayak. You flip it back over and it is full of water.
Does a boat full of water float? Not well.That is why kayaks are built for this problem.
- Paddlers wear a spray skirt in part so that if we capsize and can roll back up, we don’t even get water in the boat.
- We carry a hand-pump so that if we have to exit underwater, we can pump the excess water out once we are back in.
- Many kayaks are designed with a bulk-head front and back to keep water in the cockpit area only. This makes it much easier to get back in and get the water out.
- And if your kayak does not have bulk-heads, you use large flotation bags shaped to take up most of the space in front and in back.
From the outside, it just looks like a pretty boat. Non-paddlers have no idea of the many things built-in, or added, to keep the boat afloat.
What to do before you start or buy a business
If you are new to business, or to this type of business, take your time in the learning and research phase.
- Visit the Small Business Development Centers through the SBA.
- Attend trade or professional association meetings in sponge-mode, to learn all you can.
- Find someone in the same business you want to start, perhaps in another town so they’ll talk with you. Offer to work with them or help them do something to get the insiders view of this business.
- Check your community college for courses on starting and financing a business.
- Seek out a CPA to help you value any business you are considering purchasing and structure the purchase.
Pretty…but will it float!
A new business is exciting. A new kayak is exciting. In both cases, do what you can before you buy to be sure it will float.