6 Items To Focus On When Starting A Business

  • Contributors:
  • Rebecca Postma
Image of two business owners in bakery who are starting a business

Are you starting a business? If the answer is yes, make sure you put these six items on your to-do list.

1. Business plan

Outline who will own the business, what the legal form will be, your qualifications to run the business, the competitive market you face, the products or services you will sell, and how you intend to advertise to prospective customers.

Ask yourself – how much cash will I need to start and where will those funds come from?

2. Accounting

Who will handle the financial functions of your business? Setting up accounts, tracking expenses, and managing the books can be complex.

Plus, understanding financial statements and reports so you can grow the business means you need to collect the right data and put best practices into motion. You could do it yourself, hire someone, or even outsource your accounting and bookkeeping functions.

3. Legal form

You can incorporate, or operate as an LLC, a partnership, or a sole proprietorship. Consider both tax and nontax reasons for selecting a given entity.

4. Location

If your business will consist only of online sales, your world headquarters can be wherever you are.

However, if your business needs foot traffic to thrive, you’ll need to research rent and utility costs. You’ll also need to look into zoning and traffic restrictions.

5. Taxes

You’ll have to work with the IRS, state tax agencies, and local governments to obtain permits and occupational licenses.

6. Advisors

Create a business financial team that includes a banker, an insurance agent, an attorney, and an accountant. Involve your advisors early and frequently.


Have questions about starting a business? Let’s talk!