When speaking about your business, measuring success, listing accomplishments, etc. it is normal to just talk about things that happened after you officially launched. Oftentimes, everything that happened prior to your actual launch just gets lost in the mix.

That shouldn’t necessarily be the case. We shouldn’t overlook all of the hard work and endless hours spent before our business is actually off of the ground. Doing this, I believe, causes other would-be mom entrepreneurs to believe that this work isn’t as important. Or, even worse, maybe not even necessary.

You simply cannot just jump into entrepreneurship. The number of start-up businesses that fail each year is proof of that. There are things that you must do beforehand. There really is no way around it. Here are just a few things to consider:

Research:: This is a huge component of launching your business. You must research your potential market, your potential customers, your product and supplies. Research what other similar companies are charging, how much profit they’re making. Research the need for your planned product or service. This research will help you produce a well thought out, realistic business plan.

Education:: This goes hand in hand with research, but is slightly different.  It is critical that you be well educated in your area of business. You don’t want to go into things blindly. Learn everything you can about your competitors, your field, and don’t forget things like the business software you plan to use. Be prepared.

Write a Business Plan:: Write a detailed business plan using what you know and the data you’ve researched. Plan ahead for at least the next year. How will you start, how will you operate, how will you maintain and grow? How will you market your business?

Secure Funding:: Most businesses are not created from nothing. You’ll most likely need some start-up funds. Do you have them or do you need to find an investor? If you are planning to start mass producing a product, hire employees or open a storefront you’re going to need a few thousand dollars minimum before you start generating profit. Don’t overlook this crucial component.

These are just a few of the things to consider before you open your doors for business. There are many others including naming your business, legally establishing it and more. I’ll cover these in some upcoming posts. Only after you check some of things off of your list, can you move forward, launch and then grow your business.