Business Mentoring In Start-up Companies

Business Mentoring In Start-up Companies

Business Mentoring In Start-Up Companies

 

Business mentor focus areas (delegate assisting and advising tasks) in a start-up business
note: always focus on validation the business and getting, as soon as possible, profitable revenue!
• create a start-up plan – business mentor possible topics
– definition of the success goals
– SWOT analyses, know the barriers
– activities with milestones
– budget, financial planning (for next 2 years minimum)
– needed and acquisition of finances and other resources (for next 2 years)
– testing economic, market and technical feasibility
– develop risk management plan
– make or buy decisions
– define discontinue and exit criteria, know when to stop!
• set up a lean marketing & sales plan, contains (concisely, maximum 2 pages each subject) – business mentor possible topics
– strategy
— identify and create the business slogan: who and what you are
— the problem to solve and the business solution
— define the target market and the competition
– tactics
— define sales channels and marketing activities
— team and key roles and external partners end resources
– schedule
— milestone activities
– business model
— revenues vs expenses
note: goal is to achieve maximum return with minimal costs, and do periodic review and update the lean plan
• create a funding pitch plan as preparations (max 2 pages) – business mentor possible topics
– locate financing options
– value proposition, value for customers
– market need, problems your product/service solve
– competition, who are they and why you are different
– target market, the ideal customer
– sales & marketing, how you bring products/services to customers
– budget & sales goals, key expenses for running business, market revenue, gross margins
– milestones, scheduled activities, major goals
– team, the people who make the business successful
– partners & resources, collaborations etc.
– funding needs, and what it will be used for
note: exercise the elevator pitch presentation to convince financiers/investors
• organise accounting activities – business mentor possible topics
– select software to set up the accounting system
– billing and payment
– (consumer) cash transactions system
– define accounting roles, assign them and set procedures
– monitor budgets, sales goals and cash flow
– operate some adequate management ratios
– prepare break-even sales level
– evaluate profit and loss report at end every period
– list main suppliers, prices, and terms
– inventory records
• write a business plan – business mentor possible topics
• branding and promotion (part of marketing & sales) – business mentor possible topics
– brand name, trademark
– define unique selling proposition
– create a business slogan, tagline
– create a logo and design marks
– design/create a website (and select hosting)
– social media presence and online plans
– brochures and flyers
– presentations and PowerPoints
– promotional items and business gifts
– get listed in key directories
– business signs
– business cards and papers
– press releases
• define the marketing mix – business mentor possible topics
– 4P, product, price, promotion, place
– 4C, commodity, costs, communication, (distribution) channel
– consumer compass, N = needs, S = security, E = education and W = wants
– circumstances compass, N = national & international political, legal, ethical environment, S = social & cultural, E = economic and W = weather
• legalize business – business mentor possible topics
– open bank account
– find an attorney for assistance
– decide legal entity, consider options and evaluate pros and cons
– register the business
– register domain name
– obtain for licenses and permit
– obtain tax ID number
– draft the delivery conditions
– other agreement, like partnerships, peer-to-peer loans etc.
– take care of trademark protection
– take care of IP intellectual property
• get financed – business mentor possible topics
– find a financial intermediary for assistance
– choose your finance options, personal (by entrepreneur), debt, equity, asset and/or alternative financing
– update plans for financing (funding pitch plan, business plan, lean plan, marketing mix)
– (re-)estimate your start-up costs and budgets
– prepare the financial statements, sales forecast, profit & loss, cash flow, balance sheet
– (re-)estimate your start-up costs
– refine your elevator pitch for financers and investors
– apply for financing
• create an extensive marketing & sales plan – business mentor possible topics
• staffing – business mentor possible topics
– define the staffing needs and options
– job descriptions drafts
– hiring employees
– design salary, compensation and benefits structure
• organise establishment and technology – business mentor possible topics
– make a floor plan (business layout)
– furnishing of the work environment
– utilities, electricity, water, internet (email)
– install network and computers
– install needed equipment and machinery
– customer relation management system (CRM)
– telephone systems
– accessibility and backup (could be a hired service)
• achieve proven validation factors – business mentor possible topics
– establishing company (entity)
– product/services; technical, legal and market permits / regulations
– market/customers: earnings, growth, gross margins, recurring revenue