John Eager, CEO of the Snap Group shares his top ten tips for anyone starting in business.
“There’s no safety net – being self-employed is the reward, and the risk.”
Snap is one of Ireland’s longest established franchises and through the years, the Group Office has tons of experience with people starting in business for the first time. There are 24 franchises now all over Ireland and some have changed hands along the way. Most new franchisees have never been self employed or been responsible for running their own business and come from a diverse range of backgrounds. However, they all have the same concerns and challenges and John Eager CEO of the Snap Group shares his top ten tips for anyone starting in business whether it is with a franchise or going it alone.
1. It will be harder work than you think – be prepared for long hours. Running your own business particularly in the early years takes a huge amount of your time and effort. No matter what amount of work you think you might need to do, there is always more. So just be prepared to put a huge amount of effort and time in and it will pay off.
2. It will take longer than you think – stamina and tenacity are needed in spades. If you have the energy and enthusiasm to start your own business, keep it up and stick with it.
3. It will cost more money than you think – plan well, financially. A good business and financial plan is well worth the time and effort and continuously monitoring your finances is essential.
4. There’s no safety net – being self-employed is the reward, and the risk. A lot of new business owners find the biggest challenge is going it alone. Many will have worked in organisations where salary is paid every month, pension is looked after, admin support is there – when you start your own business, you do everything. However, there are huge rewards and a huge sense of achievement.
5. Choose a good brand – it will help with recognition as a new business.
6. Sales, sales, sales – this is the No. 1 activity. Remember that this is what will keep your business alive. You need a strong sales plan and you must keep it going. You need to be constantly marketing and selling your business. Looking after your existing customers and recruiting new ones. Don’t be tempted to take your foot off the pedal when your sales get strong, it is an ongoing process and will be the mainstay of your business.
7. Be prepared for mistakes and missteps – success is carved from experience and experimentation. Don’t expect to get everything right but also don’t be hard on yourself when things don’t go to plan. You will learn from your mistakes and the experiences will drive your success.
8. Have a good financial adviser. Probably one of the most important people you will need in your business so choose wisely.
9. Keep healthy, keep your spirits and energy levels up. If you are going to put your heart and soul into your business, you need to stay healthy. The old adage that a healthy body is a healthy mind has been proven time and time again. Make time for your activities, see your friends and family, get those rich personal experiences, they are vital.
10. Have fun. This is the best piece of advice we can give you. Enjoy your business; it will form a big part of your life in the early stages. Laugh and have fun.
Snap is a national brand, founded in 1984 by Irish businessman, Michael Kearney and employs 160 people across its 24 Irish franchises. The company also has a production facility in Baldonnell, Dublin employing an additional 20 people.
Snap offers a comprehensive range of products and services including, marketing communication advice, graphic design, direct mail, hundreds of promotional products, point of sale, personalisation and fulfillment services, web site design, on line marketing and all forms of digital and litho printing.
The company is a franchise business and is wholly Irish owned and funded. The Snap brand operates in Australia, Ireland, New Zealand and China. Each Snap business is owned and operated by individual franchise owners.
Date: March 8, 2011