November 18, 2014
Entrepreneurship isn’t for everyone. It takes a highly dedicated and disciplined personality to be your own boss and work for yourself. As such, the team at CREATIVE ZONE has developed the top five questions every entrepreneur needs to ask themselves before starting their own business. This involves determining your level of passion and drive as well as establishing a worst case scenario, just in case. Read on and find out if you have what it takes!
#1 - Do I know my potential market and competitors?
When starting a new SME, Free Zone company, or any type of business setup in Dubai, it is important to think about whether or not your idea is a viable business opportunity. People will only buy your product or service if they have a use for it and prefer it in comparison to its competitors. When thinking of your company setup and marketing potential, you must consider how you will sit amongst your competitors. Remember that competition is not referring to a product or service like yours, but anything that can produce the same results. For an example, a new mousetrap is not just competing against other mousetraps, but rather all methods of getting rid of mice. Properly assess your competition by first deciding on who the competition is, then determine how much of a threat they are, and then verify whether or not you have the means to successfully compete against them.
#2 - Do I have a profitable business model that can provide continuous revenue?
Successful business models in Dubai must offer three key values. The first key value is to acquire high value customers - not to be confused with rich customers. A high value customer or market is one that is easy to locate, allows you to make a profit, and is willing to try your product after minimal marketing. The second key value is to offer something significant to your customers. This can be done a number of ways such as; listing unique advantages in the features and company registration, improving retail distribution, offering complete customer solutions, and offering fast delivery service. Lastly, start up companies and SME’s should deliver products or services with high margins. If your company achieves growth in sales but spends more on marketing and administrative expenses, then your profit margin will fall along with your cash flow. Therefore, setting profit margin that is higher enables you to grow or maintain your revenue, while keeping your costs at a minimum.
#3 - Do I have a clear vision as to who I am and what I do?
Every entrepreneur who aims to set up their own company in Dubai has their own definition of what their company is and what it will do. For many, having a traditional definition for their vision actually limits the company’s ability for growth. Having a clear definition of what your business is and what your company setup entails does two things: it creates more focus, and allows you to see the full range of available opportunities. Defining who you are at your core also makes you, as an entrepreneur, more accountable to those above you. What is and isn’t right for your company affects everyone involved and allows for more good choices to happen.
#4 - Do I have enough start-up capital and operating funds?
Knowing the correct amount of start-up capital is one of the most difficult financial aspects for small business owners to understand. Especially in a city that is as extravagant and luxurious as Dubai is. Obviously, as an entrepreneur, you need money to get your business setup in Dubai off the ground. This cash can be used towards renting office space, purchasing furniture, equipment, supplies, and paying out professional fees to your consultants. You will also need to keep in mind that you must have enough to pay for employee’s residency visas, annual airline tickets and of course, monthly salaries. Before starting, you should continuously research current market rates and determine your company’s initial start up costs as well as how much is required to run your company for the first year while you are building your business. Think about what types of funding will work best for your company.
#5 - Do I have a strong support system?
No man is an island and in order to convert your company setup into a strong business, you’re going to need support from others. Having a strong support system will help you navigate the unknown and sometimes confusing process of becoming an entrepreneur. The idea is that you should have a friend or family member that you can go to for not only encouragement but also to keep you accountable. The golden rule and key to building an entourage for your business in Dubai is that you surround yourself with positive and encouraging individuals. Be sure to stock your support system with people who know you and can provide unconditional, yet tough love when needed. Remove any people who are not on board with you or are trying to compete with you. Although, at the end of the day, it is important to remember that as an entrepreneur, you are your own best friend and the one ultimately responsible for your success!