How to Start a Remote Business
So you want to start a business?! First off congrats, but let’s get down to what it takes. You’ve decided that starting a business is something you want to pursue. But maybe you’re not really sure what type of business to go with. That’s where I’m here to help.
When you’re looking at a business, you have to decide – 1) What areas of expertise do you currently have? And then, 2) what problems have you seen that you can fix?
It’s easy to look at other industries and say, ‘they should have done this.’ If you’ve had a bad customer experience, you would say, oh, ‘their call center or customer service rep didn’t know the basic’ blah, blah, blah, whatever it is.
But in order to fully solve a business problem, you have to have direct experience, or you have to have someone very close to you who’s talking to you at great lengths about what the problem is.
Here’s the catch though, don’t build a business based on an easy solution. A lot of the easy solutions are quick fixes. They are band-aids to a bigger problem and don’t actually get fixed or solve the bigger problem.
What is the problem?
You also have to decide what problem you want to fix. There’s a lot of problems out there. For instance, if you’re in education and you want to fix the online learning experience, the learning management system, or the LMS platform that they use. That’s a huge endeavor. There’s a lot of variables that go into that and it’s very difficult to. address each of those areas, it’s easy to address one part, but not all of them.
When you’re looking at businesses the same way. Where’s your expertise? Do you have experience in it? If you don’t. I suggest working on it as a side hustle while you gain direct experience in that industry or that field. If you don’t have a specific problem, but you have an industry that you have a genuine interest in or an opportunity that offers itself up to you – take the opportunity to learn as much as you can over the next couple of years, and then build a side hustle to handle that.
Don’t build a c-suite team
The next step you need to look at. What type of talent do you want to bring onboard? A lot of people make the mistake of saying. I’m going to be the CEO of this company. And I’m going to bring on a couple of VPs. I’m going to bring on this person and that person, whether it’s a friend or an expert.
And then they dilute their shares when they really haven’t even done much with their business. They haven’t done anything with their business.
And it’s easy to say, I’m going to go raise a million bucks off a seed round. That’s fine and dandy, but that’s not realistic.
So what you need to do is you need to say. What is the problem? Can I solve this problem myself? If you can solve it yourself, do it.
Finding people to help
Don’t hire other people. Now here’s the caveat, right? There are certain areas that you’re not your best at. There are certain areas that other people are more efficient at. That’s when you hire contractors, there’s plenty of contractors online, whether it be Fiverr or connecting directly on LinkedIn.
There’s a lot of different options here, but essentially you have to use, or sub out and delegate work that you aren’t at your best at.
Why it’s important to delegate
If you don’t know how to code. Don’t learn it in 90 days, your time is best spent selling the product. Building a base. That’s where you begin. When you’re ready to market the product, choose one platform. I don’t use all of the platforms.
Don’t outsource to an agency that handles all the platforms. Typically you’re not going to be able to grow anything or they’re going to use fake bots or they’re going to spend all your potential revenue on ads, that’s not the best bang for your buck, but what you need to do is find 10 users.
Find your base followers
Find those 10 users and then expand that to 50 and then start creating those goals of what you can get to next. The other part is don’t get bogged down with the paperwork.
A lot of people say you need to LLC, you need to register your business. You need an EIN, you need this, you need that. Yes, you do need these in time. But first, you need an actual business that is solving a problem. And if you get bogged down with all the paperwork, you’re going to go nowhere.
Should I worry about how BIG my company looks?
Let’s talk about these office solutions. Just like above, it’s the same thing with an office location. Yeah, it’s great to have a nice fancy office location, whether you use, WeWork or Regus or any of those, but at the end of the day, the people that you’re trying to persuade can see right through that. And then the people that you’re impressing. Don’t have any added value to your business. There’s no benefit to impressing them. So save your money and use it for other areas.
What this all boils down to
But when you’re looking at a business problem, just to recap, it’s important to figure out where your areas of expertise are. And then drill down into the actual problem. I like to use the 5 whys approach where you simply say, I want to fix this. Why and then you ask yourself Why (and answer) 4 more times – it’s that simple.
That’s how you start a business. Don’t get bogged down in the paperwork. Don’t hire a bunch of people you don’t need. Don’t expect to raise a million bucks right off the bat. Start with 10 users, subcontract, everything out that you can, when you need to get that LLC form, do it.
My suggestion is to start with something small. Start with something scalable. I typically like to avoid businesses that have a huge reliance on the human factor. What I mean by that is if you’re in a service-based business. It’s very difficult to find good talent. Not necessarily to get market share. But it’s difficult to keep a high level of talent.
It’s very difficult. I’m in Florida. It’s extremely difficult in Florida. Even if you pay a 30% premium of what the going rate is there, especially post-pandemic, it’s very difficult.
My suggestion is to find a company you can start online. Some type of technology business whether software as a service (SaaS) or some other variation of that, and use that to your advantage, scale it, contract out to solve a specific problem, and then answer it.
What to sell with your product?
And then when you’re looking at features to provide. Find four right. Do a competitive analysis. And what it means by that is to look at your top three competitors. And who solved a similar problem, if there’s no one solving that problem. Okay. It is. Very difficult to get into that field. Many people think, oh, someone hasn’t thought of it. Then I’m going to be the first and I’m going to jump on it. Typically, it doesn’t happen that way. It’s better to reinvent the wheel when the wheel is already broken and you have identified the missing part.
Much better that way than to try to recreate a new wheel, a new version. This is a modern environment where people with flashy gimmicks trying to “change the world.” But essentially, they are just using other people’s money and are ultimate salesmen. That typically attracts VCs and people think it’s going to be the next unicorn, but those are typically duds. This is a waste of everyone’s time, including yours.
Focus on the problem
It’s better to fix a problem that many people put a bandaid on, or that’s too small insignificant that people. As a whole has said, it’s not worth pursuing. And they just cover it up with a bunch of other features that aren’t really needed. To find a specific problem drill down on what that looks like, align it to where your areas of expertise are, identify what those four features are, and get to it. Don’t get bogged down with the paperwork and everything else. That’s involved. Put that on your to-do list for things you’re going to get done in the near future. When is. Applicable. All right. Do you have any questions? If you have any ideas, if you want to hear more about this, and subscribe or leave a comment below and until next time.
I built this platform to help people, like yourself, who need a free resource for building your next business. I will never ask for your email, sell a course, or misrepresent my values. I do this because I enjoy helping others. A benefit of being a professor (I’m not anymore) was that I could help people think bigger, use their imagination, and become more efficient given all the obstacles and options currently available today. Feel free to reach out at any point. I love helping people and watching them grow their business to unparalleled expectations.