• Graffins College

Starting a Business after College? Here’s some advice

Updated: Jun 4, 2018

Most graduates perceive that investments are for people with huge chunks of money and huge businesses. Not so though, investment is just a reflection of putting in the time and effort to learn, not some divine gift. It’s almost impossible to skip investment topics when dealing with graduates. A life without investments in unimaginable. It’s incredible that people can name every starting footballer for arsenal fc but know so little about their finances and how easy it can be to become informed.

Graffins graduates during the graduation ceremony

1. Follow your passion.

the importance of doing work that brings you joy and fulfillment cannot be overstated. In fact, a founder's passion is key to ensuring that a business thrive. Doing work that has meaning to you will provide the motivation needed to get through the rough patches and tumultuous times that are an inevitable part of building any new venture.

. It’s incredible that people can name every starting footballer for arsenal fc but know so little about their finances and how easy it can be to become informed.

2. Do the research

The only way to know if what seemed like a great idea in your dorm room can become a viable business is to do the research. Take the time to thoroughly study all the elements that go into establishing your new business. Understand the operations and finance of the business. Too many new grads want to jump to strategy and innovation — the sexier topics, but spend[ing] time … developing depth of experience will pay off many times over.

3. Learn from the inside

Regardless of when you decide to start your business, there's always value in taking some time to learn from more seasoned professionals. Working for someone else for a short time can help you build an extensive list of contacts, pick up best practices and learn from leaders in your industry. Additionally, gaining experience in a variety of companies and work environments may help you refine your own ideas about what exactly you want to accomplish.

4. Find mentors

Finding experienced and trusted advisers who can offer guidance and support will help a new entrepreneur navigate the pitfalls of business development and ownership.

"Nothing shortens a learning curve more than someone with been-there-done-that experience,

5. Network constantly

A strong professional network often makes the difference between success and failure for your business. One way to build this network is to make connections as often as possible and with as many people as you can

6. Use your tech know-how

Recent college grads who are digital natives are especially equipped to harness technology's power to establish, promote and grow their businesses.

"There are so many ways to quickly and easily get started in business now that just weren't available even 10 years ago. Purchasing your brand's domain name and building a website is a basic first step. Growing interest in your business by building up an Instagram following, writing for popular blogs and online magazinesis an essential step.

7. Develop great communication skills

Communication is a fundamental skill in life and in business. Online communication can often be misinterpreted or misunderstood, nothing gets a deal done faster than meeting in person. If that isn't possible, call, especially if reaching out to someone of an older generation."

Another component of good communication is finding a way to tell your company’s origin story passionately, clearly and succinctly. Those who struggle with verbal communication can practice different approaches to strengthen this ability to express their vision for their business. Expert recommend coming up with planned responses to some of the most common questions asked about your business, and then testing out your answers on friends, colleagues and family members who have varying degrees of knowledge about your business and industry.Nailing your messaging will open doors to bigger and better conversations in the future.

8. Figure out finances

All entrepreneurs need to prepare for every aspect of running a business, and this includes developing a sound understanding and ability to manage the financial aspects of their company, including financial analysis, taxes and budgeting. Seek out online courses in finance and study various startup business models. It will most likely be a while before your company is at a place financially where you can hire a full-time controller, so the more comfortable you are with numbers, the better.

9. Cultivate grit

If you want to start a business, you must put the desire for instant gratification aside and plan to work harder and longer than you ever imagined. Developing an unflappable resilience and commitment to your business will be necessary to get through the toughest days.

If you want to be a successful entrepreneur, you need to have grit and not give up on the first try. There are a million challenges, and you just have to pound your way through them. So much of what it takes to create a new business is simply about the unglamorous monotony of hard work.

10. Understand that failure is part of the process

About 50 percent of small businesses fail by their fifth year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This sobering fact may be enough to dissuade those with a low tolerance for risk from ever starting a business. However, young entrepreneurs shouldn't fear failure, but instead recognize that it can teach them valuable lessons about their business and the path their careers should take. If you're starting a business, remember that companies need to take risks to grow, and sometimes these risks lead to failure, good judgment should always be exercised, but, assuming it is, failures should be viewed as teachable moments.

11. Stop comparing yourself to others

Perhaps the most important lesson of all is about the need to drop the ego and staying focused on your goals

12. Don't be afraid to take the leap

Once you've done your research, you are ready to jump in. It may seem easier to first get a job right out of college, gain some experience, save a bit of money and then start a business. But walking away from such stability will be harder than you think, and you may end up never taking the leap. It's better to go for it, and then get a job if it doesn't work out, rather than get a job and never go for it


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