When you decide to start your own business, advisors and gurus abound. Some of their input is good and some is not so good. Of course, no one would advise you to start a new business when the economy is a mess, right? Well, that might depend on whom you consult.
Here is a list of just a few businesses that launched during a recession or a bear market (www.kauffman.org): 3M, Adobe Systems, Amgen, Apple, Bath and Body Works, BET, Broadcom, Buffalo Wild Wings, Chevron, CNN, Dave and Buster’s, Disney, Electronic Arts, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Exxon Mobil, Gallup, Genentech, General Electric, Genzyme, Guess, Hyatt, IBM, Johnson & Johnson, Kraft, Lotus Software, Merck, Microsoft, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Pizza Hut, Princeton Review, QuikTrip, Quiznos, Scottrade, The Learning Company, United Technologies, Urban Outfitters, Valero, and Whole Foods.
This list reinforces an idea I have always endorsed—anytime can be a good time to start a business. It depends much less on the economy and much more on several other business factors. For example, here is a short (but not exhaustive) list of questions one must assess before launching a new business:
1—What is your product or service?
2—Who is your ideal customer?
3—What is your value proposition?
4—What differentiates you from your competition?
5—How will you capitalize your startup?
6—Do you understand all the legalities of running a business?
7—Who will be on your team or your advisory board?
8—How will you market and sell your product or service?
9—Are you prepared for all the demands of being a business owner?
10—Do your circumstances and your passion tell you the timing is right?
The next time you decide to start a business, do not let anyone dissuade you purely because of the economy. Address the more important questions to make your decision. If you like the answers, then it might be time to take the plunge!