Where to Start?
So you’re thinking about creating a small business or you already have and now you’re looking to get things rolling. I like to use the philosophy of “working smarter not harder”. This is easier said then done as most startups you will need to work hard. This is where Technology will fit in and hopefully make you work more efficient too.
Start at the Beginning!
Now that we know technology will help us work smarter. One of the most common question is “where to start”, let’s dive right in. Here’s an initial list of the basics of what I feel is where to start:
- Telecommunications: Phone & Internet
- Home Office Setup: Router, Printer, Etc.
I think the key to any business starts with a computer. There are plenty of options to choose from and can be quite daunting. The first decision for the computer is do you need a desktop or a laptop.
The desktop is more of the traditional approach to computing. This is usually more cost effective but does require more space and isn’t very mobile.
The laptop has been around for a while and is probably the preferred choice for most people. It is more costly then a desktop but provides mobility and therefore should be able to have a function purpose justifying the costs.
I’ve had many people ask me about only choosing a tablet for your computing needs. I’m not going to say it can’t be done but will definitely provide challenges. If you feel you can manage all communications, marketing, pictures, printing, and file storage on a tablet good for you! You are most likely trading time to save a little money as it usually takes longer in a mobile view.
Connecting to your customers is key life line to your business. This should be as simple as providing a phone number for them to call you. The next question is what number? Are you going to have a business land line, a cell phone, or something else? That’s a fantastic question. I would definitely choose a cell phone especially starting out. It could even be your personal number. Everyone has internet these days and so should your business. A website should be one place to start and is very inexpensive for one of your business’ front door. Web Buildout is a great company that will help get you started.
Home Office Setup
This will vary from business to business but having an isolated space for your business is very important. Your computer will be here along with other devices. A printer is important item to have. Being able to print an invoice and send it to your customer is huge! It seems simple but which printer do you choose? There are so many printers in the market these days. Inkjet or laserjet? I just want to print an invoice! How do I connect my printer? Will it be straight into the computer or should it be network printing? I need a network but I’m just starting and don’t have one. The questions and concerns go on and on. The funny thing is that all started because you wanted to print a customer invoice. Here are some guides to help get you started.