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5 Tips for Millennials Starting a Small Business

The millennial generation has the entrepreneurial spirit – they just need some assistance getting their small businesses off the ground.

A new study by America’s Small Business Development Centers and the Center for Generational Kinetics shows that millennials are far more eager than any other generation of Americans to go out and start a business on their own. Specifically, while 41 percent of all Americans said they would “quit their job and start a business in the next six months if they had the tools and resources they needed,” that number was a robust 59 percent among millennials.

The study provided several other stats showing just how small-business-minded this generation is. For instance, more than half of millennials say they would want help with a business development plan, while 45 percent say they would “absolutely use” accounting or bookkeeping software training. Meanwhile, 61 percent say owning your own business provides the best job security.

But there’s a disconnect between desire and ability. Nearly half those surveyed say lack of access to capital is the biggest hurdle standing between them and starting a business. But the stat that stands out the most? “More than 13 million millennials cite not knowing where to go for help to start or run a business as the number one reason that keeps them from starting their own business.”

If you’re a millennial who’s contemplating starting your own small business, don’t be discouraged. The following are some tips for millennials starting a small business.

5 Tips for Millennials Starting a Small Business

  1. Don’t Dream – Plan: A million-dollar idea isn’t worth a buck until it’s put into action, but it’s hard to get the ball rolling if you have no idea what you’re doing, or how you’re going to do it. Writing a business plan is one of the first and most important steps toward running a small business, as it requires you to think about things such as your addressable market, company organization structure, marketing plan and financial projections. The U.S. Small Business Administration offers a great basic how-to on writing up a business plan.
  2. Find Funding: It’s exceedingly difficult for millennials to fund the buildout of a small business because in addition to lack of capital, they often still paying off their student loan debt. That’s why business financing is critical. A few places to look? Traditional banks will sometimes provide business loans, but often that’s a bit risky for them – you’ll likely have better luck with things such as SBA loans or alternative lenders. If you’re a military veteran, you’ll have a number of additional funding sources at your disposal. Also, if you are paying off student loans and want to start a small business, consider seeking out lower monthly payments by extending the term of your loan to help lighten the load.
  3. Start Planning for Your Tax Future: Taxes might be one of the most boring and most anxiety-triggering aspects of owning a small business, but they’re also the center for some of the most important decisions you’ll make. For instance, how you structure your business will determine how you’re taxed, planning ahead for deductions can help lessen your liabilities and understanding how retirement plans work can help you start putting some tax-advantaged money to work for you.
  4. Visit America’s SBDC: This nationwide network of small business development centers offers a number of resources for aspiring business owners, including e-learning opportunities, at-cost training and an annual conference that offer professional development and networking.
  5. Talk to the Pros: The experts at McManamon & Co. have decades of combined experience helping small and mid-size businesses get off the ground and grow. Whether it’s business consulting, accounting, tax assistance or any of our other professional services, we have what the expertise you need to help make your dream of business ownership a reality.

So whether you’re 20 or 60, give us a call at 440.892.9088 or contact us online to get established business professionals on your side as you take the first step toward entrepreneurship.


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