Starting a small business with a capital of about US$ 100 is not as easier as it sounds especially among the elite members of the society. Many people would wish to venture into a business in a big way so that they can achieve success in the shortest time possible. They however forget that success in life is always a gradual process and rarely comes over night. You cannot start running before you learn how to walk. Therefore you may not successfully start a big business before you learn how to successfully run a small business. There are therefore many challenges one faces when he or she starts off in a small way with limited capital. The following are some of challenges and my recommendations of how one can overcome them;
Lack of natural blessings in business
Some people may have limited capital but they fear to venture into business because they are convinced in their mind that they are not gifted to be in business. Yes being in business for some people looks quite natural as they work smart in order to succeed. They find it quite easy for example to build profitable business relationships. It is also important to appreciate that business skills can acquired through reading written literature, practicing under a competent business entrepreneur, observing others, listening to other people talking about business and also through educational institutions.
Not aligned to status in life
There are no academic or status or entry requirements for one to venture into business. Venturing into business is open to people from all backgrounds. Success in business depends on your positive mindset towards business and having an achievable business mission. For sure you will not succeed in business if you are negative about it and you lack an achievable mission in life that can be supported with income from business.
Small profit margins
Some people despise starting with a small business because of small profit margin on individual items sold. The profit margins may appear small basing on individual units being sold but cumulative effect should not be forgotten. For example I know of a live chicken vendor that makes about a half United States dollar in profits for every bird sold. The profit on each bird looks too small but becomes reasonable if he sales a big number of birds let us say two thousands in a week. The total gross income becomes 1,000 dollars per week. The profit will therefore depend on the number of customers a vendor has. In business profit per individual item sold tends to be small but the cumulative amount determined by the share of market matters a lot.
Negative mindset of people operating small businesses
Some people cannot venture into business because they despise the type of people who happen to be in the sector. It so happens because of the education system majority of people in business tend to have dropped out of formal education for one reason or another. Therefore majority of university graduates find difficult to venture into businesses where majority of the players are people that dropped out of school. They cannot imagine themselves consulting people they view as failures in education for advice. But we should forget that educational institutions are there to help you acquire knowledge that you will apply in practice. The same knowledge can also be acquired by someone through overcoming the challenges in life. Educational achievement is not success per se but an advantage you can build on to succeed very fast in life. You should always remember the journey to success through business is run by people from all backgrounds including those who have added advantage.
Fear of facing potential customers
Some people have the skills to produce goods and services that can be sold for a profit but have inbuilt fear of attracting, serving and retaining customers. The most important issue in business is to consider the customers’ needs current and future when designing your products and services. It is also true that you cannot be gifted in all areas. Therefore you have to attract other people with expertise in the areas where you are not gifted to help you as you walk your journey to success.
Lack of innovative capacity
I have been to our local market to buy a number of items including greens, fruits, bananas, meat, fish and chicken among others. There are many vendors selling same products but each one has his or her customers. Each one has used his or her innovative ability to create a strong relationship with his or her customers. The vendor make you feel that they are in the market waiting to serve you as they welcome you with a smile.
Author: John Muhaise Bikalemesa
Director: Big Drum Advisory Services Limited