For a start, there is a lot of admin to be done – I followed the useful Small Business Victoria guide called “Starting Your Own Business” which takes you through the legal and regulatory requirements. They also run a regular free seminar on this and various other topics, and give attendees a free session with the Small Business Mentoring Service. This entitles you to an hour
or so with an experienced mentor which is worth attending for one on one advice.
One key thing I did after the seminar was formalise my own business plan (after all, if I’m urging clients to be clear on your own plan, the least I can do is write mine down). I’ve read a couple of good books – “Playing to Win, How Strategy Really Works” by Lafley & Martin and “Mastering the Rockefeller Habits: What You Must Do to Increase the Value of Your Growing Firm” by Verne Harnish. Thanks to Davidsons for putting me onto the latter. They contain some useful points about focusing on your competitive advantage, prioritising and monitoring action.
Then getting technology set up: website design, hosting, new business emails, home office – it all takes some time but I’m proud to say I worked it all out myself and at minimal cost. You’ll see my website uses Weebly which is free.
Not to be forgotten is the management of risk – I followed advice to do a simple risk register and putting in place insurance and contract terms to manage the risks that being self-employed presents.
So now that the back-office is organised, it’s time to make myself known. Making sure I am getting my name into the market and known for what I want to be known for. Networking, writing articles, speaking and contributing to groups that all support brand Bakes. Arriving at a tagline is the latest challenge.
And while all this has been occupying my time and thoughts, some project opportunities have come along as a bonus.
Thanks to all the colleagues and contacts who have supported me so far, it’s great to have taken this exciting step with your help.