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Start: How to get your business underway

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Thanks for picking up this book. You are obviously in the mood for change, and you have already admitted to yourself that you might need a bit of help. That’s two massive steps already. People set up businesses when they get fed up with the way other companies do things, or if they have a brilliant idea, or if they get booted out of their corporation and have no choice (there’s no embarrassment with this any more – it happened to me on several occasions).

There must be millions of books about starting your own business, so why should this one be any different? Well, part of it may lie in what this book does not cover. Firstly, it is not a self-help book that takes you step by step through all the technical stuff such as how to do your tax return or visit the bank for a loan. There are plenty of other books that do this. Secondly, it is not my life story from rags to riches. These can be interesting, but more often than not they are very predictable. You know the sort of stuff: I started off in my front room, then we had to work in the garage, then we had to borrow some money from my uncle, and so on. Unless these stories have a fascinating angle that is directly relevant to your situation, then they may not help you, the ordinary person, to cope with what you are going to go through.

No, what I am interested in is how you feel.

Start is a one-stop guide to getting your business of the ground. Written by someone who has actually been there and done it, it gets straight to the heart of launching your business, with no-nonsense ideas to help you start out with confidence and a clear direction. Pick up some essential tips like:
* Start with the idea. What is it and how will it realise your ambitions?What is the long-term plan? If you don't know where you are going then you won't get there.
* Simplicity is the key. Don't overcomplicate things so that the idea is pecked to death by ducks. If you can write it on a postcard and explain it to your mum, then you can get started.
* Make clear plans. Draw up One-page business and personal plans to work out what you want in the simplest and clearest possible way.
* Decide what you want. Flush out whether you are building to sell, or just want the business to fund your lifestyle, then take the leap of faith and get it underway. Work hard, but don't confuse being busy with being effective.
* Learn from experience. Realise when you are gaining speed but losing altitude, and have the courage to change things when they aren't working well.

All vital stuff, packaged and presented in a way that will help you put it into practice right away. So what are you waiting for? It's time to Start.

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