16 signs you’re ready to start a business

How do you know when it’s the right time to start a business? To help you make the leap to startup entrepreneur, here are 16 signs you are really ready now. 

With as many as 50% of startups failing in their first two years, you can’t afford to just stumble into business. You need to make sure you’re ready – your business ducks are in a row and it’s the right time. But how can you do that?

16 signs you’re ready to start a business

To help make sure that starting a business is really something you should be doing right now, here are 16 signs you’re ready.

1) You have an idea

This may seem obvious, but if you don’t have an idea, you don’t have a business! (If you’re an aspiring but currently idea-less entrepreneur, find how we can help you come up with an idea here.)

2) You’re passionate about your idea

Does your idea fire you up? Do you lie awake at night thinking about it? Every business needs a magic something to see it through those tricky early months – and that ‘thing’ is passion.

3) Your idea uses your skills and experience

It can be tough enough starting a business from scratch the first time. But starting a business that requires skills and experience you completely lack could be adding a layer of stress and risk too much.

4) You’ve researched your market

You’re confident there’s a need for what you do, there’s a space for your idea, and you can charge enough to make a profit. How? Because you’ve already researched your market.

5) You have a plan

There are times when it’s admirable to just have a punt at something. And there’s starting a business. Failing to plan, as they say, is planning to fail. We suggest you plan.

6) You know your audience

It’s not enough just to know an audience exists for what you do. You need to know them really, really well. If you want to sell to them, you need to know their habits, their problems and their dreams.

7) You’re over work

Resent having to go into work every day? Tired of your commute? Wish you could call the shots more? These are all good indicators you’re ready to find a new boss – you!

8) You’re ready to learn

Think you know a lot about your business idea (and business full stop) now? Just wait a year. There are few learning curves steeper than starting a business. So be open to learning – and fast!

9) You’ve worked out your finances

You may have a lean startup model in mind, but every business requires some money to get going – even if it’s just hosting for a DIY website. And what about your own living costs/expenses?

10) You’re prepared to fail

Starting any business is a risk. Yes, you may hit the entrepreneurial jackpot and boast that mythical six figures in a month. But you could also fail. So make peace with the concept of failure.

11) You’ve got time to start a business

It’s perfectly feasible to start a side business while working full time. Or while caring for a small child. You just need to know how much time you need to work in, and find it.

12) You’re comfortable with success

As strange as this may sound, we’ve met too many entrepreneurs who don’t feel worthy of success – so unconsciously sabotage their own business. Don’t be one of them.

13) You understand your brand

Every business has a brand, whether they know it or not. It’s your personality; how you sound, act and look to the rest of the world. So work out what yours is.

14) You’ve got a roadmap

You wouldn’t set out on a new journey without knowing where you were going – and how you will get there. So don’t start a business without a SMART goal and a process to follow to reach it.

15) You know how to make money

What’s the difference between a hobby and a business? One word: money. If you don’t understand how to make money (and, just as importantly, how to sell) you may as well stick to hobbies.

16) You can’t NOT start it

And finally, if you’re really ready right now, then nothing will stop you. You won’t make excuses, or wait for the ‘right moment’, you’ll feel compelled to leap off that cliff and do it!

Ready to start YOUR business? Here’s how to survive your first year

We’ve launched a 12-month course that guides you through your first year in business. From honing and testing your idea, to planning, selling, pricing, marketing and PR, Kickstart helps you build a profitable business every month.

You’ll get lessons, exercises, workbooks, videos, support and advice to navigate all the ups and downs of starting your own business. So if you’re ready to it, find out how we will help you.

“I wasn’t sure what to commit to to get me up and running, but I am so pleased I chose Kickstart! A really well set out, step by step course to really help you focus on setting up and establishing your business.

Hannah is very supportive and generous with her time – and it is also great having helpful advice and much needed high-fives from the rest of the Kickstarters.” Bonamy Gauvain Waddell

Want to build a profitable business every month? Here’s how to do it.


Photo by Joe Gardner