Why Now Is A Good Time To Start A Business.e_darrellj | Apr 04, 2013
If you’re on the fence about breaking off and starting your own business, here are some thoughts from Alastair Cameron, Founder of Startacus.net. Alastair guest writes for us now and again, and today’s topic is why today is an opportune time to start your new business.
What’s to lose?
Irrespective of whether you are currently unemployed or in employment, the chances are that because you are reading this article, you are at least a little interested in starting a business, or have at least a good idea that you think could make a good business. Unfortunately I went through the process of redundancy and unemployment before I considered doing something about one of my ‘ideas’, though in hindsight that was very much time lost. Perhaps redundancy was the catalyst to spur me on, however you don’t have to be unemployed or facing job uncertainty to want to work for yourself. Many entrepreneurs work part time on their ideas; weekends, evenings, lunch breaks, whenever they can. So don’t feel that being employed is a barrier to starting a business - see it as an opportunity to at least work on your idea, make plans and formulate your business model - whilst you at least have the security of a wage and a solid job behind you.
If you are unemployed - well, like I was, the benefit of the benefits system isn’t really all that appealing and in reality what have you got to lose by at least developing your business idea? You have the potential to create a career and job opportunities for others in the process. You may be surprised to find that there are significant funding and government opportunities (depending on where you live) to take your idea forward if it has real merit.
If you get to the stage of starting a business and have the finances to support employing additional staff, then perhaps now is the best time to recruit them. Whether that be employing a contract staff member or finding a freelancer to complete a specific project, the recession, as tough as it has been, has created a flexible and available workforce. Starting a business when there is less available talent and low unemployment means that you may find it harder to find the skills you need to take your business forward.
Lack of Competition
Stands to reason, but many people would be deterred by starting businesses during a recession - the tightening of the belt and purse strings attitude can also apply to a mentality that it would be unwise to start a business in a recession. A good business idea is, however, a good business idea - irrespective of when it is launched. Microsoft, Burger King, Hyatt Corp, Jim Henson Co., to name but a few, all reportedly launched during recessions, and they have all gone on to do pretty well (hopefully Startacus can continue that trend!) Also, if your competition is either closing down around you, or not even opening up at all, then the chances are that you have at least the opportunity to make a go of it and with less competition on your doorstep too.
The World’s Your Oyster
Startacus is not a massively funded platform, nor does it have a millionaire backer or a team of 20 paid writers behind the scenes. What it does have is a passion and belief that as a business we will succeed, that our brand is strong and that we will become a big player in our marketplace. The good news is that social media and the power of the internet to make an impression, means that our business benefits from how well we ‘perform’ online. Everyone, irrespective of location, budget and staff numbers has the opportunity to create brand awareness, brand visibility and a reputation via the likes of Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. You should take advantage of this and realize that the contacts that you can make are global, not local - even if your makeshift office is in your house and your office is often your laptop, or mobile phone! This can also translate into the staff that you employ or the projects that you commission; no longer does your workforce have to meet you face to face. The world can be your oyster.
Alastair Cameron is the Founder of Startacus.net, an online platform seeking to inspire, inform, and motivate self-starters, innovators, startups & creatives to connect, collaborate & bring ideas to life.