Its a bit like buying a house or building your own?
With the failure rates for start up businesses running very high in Ireland, why do more people not try and buy and existing business? Is it that there are none for sale? Are sellers looking for too much? is there no way to value a business properly?
My own advice to anyone looking at getting started is to always consider buying first without emotion.
Here is an example:
Day 1. You decide to set up your business, you invest in your idea development, sourcing of premises, research into the market, looking for staff, looking at marketing, testing your products, focus groups, PR, sales plans, budgets, forecasts for banks, Business Plans from scratch etc…
Day 90 – Open your doors – 0 Customers, loads of good will, loads of energy, loads of passion for the business.
Day 97 – 1 week down, new customers arrive, products sold, very positive about the future and getting good response from customers. Everyone busy. Not breaking even yet.
Day 180 – just about breaking evening with running costs, no salary taken yet, things looking up but tougher than expected.
Starting a business from scratch has challenges and costs. Know them before you start.
Consider the alternative.
Day 1 you want to start a business – you look at who else is doing a similar job or who else has the same customers as you would like.
Day 7 – research all the possible businesses that could be bought and prepare a plan to approach them
Look for ones where the business is struggling because of poor team, service or leadership but located well.
Look out for one where the owner seems to want out or where the owner is not present.
Ask if you can work for them. You will soon see the ups and downs, the opportunities and threats that exist in a business like this, you will experience the seasonality.
You will get to understand what the business might be worth.
You have not spent any money at this stage but you have invested in your education.
Seek out advice from people that can help you. Starting your own business venture does not have to mean starting from scratch, neither does it have to mean starting alone.
This is the time to make good decisions – not when you have spent a fortune.
About the author, Derek O'Dwyer
Hi I’m Derek O’Dwyer. I have been an ActionCOACH for the last 18 years. I live in Clare and work with businesses around Ireland to take their business to the next level. I am passionate about business and providing help and advice. In the past 18 years I have worked with over 400 business owners helping them and their business. I adapt my coaching depending on what you and your business need. I find that each coaching relationship is different but as long as we understand that we have a common objective with timescales, positive things happen quickly. I am a firm believer i the concept of “what you can measure you can manage” and “what you measure you can improve”. Key performance indicators and accountability form the bedrock of my coaching platforms. If making more money from your business, working less hours in your business and having a great team running your business then it’s worth having a discussion with me. If you are willing to implement changes I will be there to help every step of the way. In terms of personal accolades and recognition I have been awarded ActionCOACH of the year in Ireland every year for the last ten years In 2019 I was inducted into the ActionCOACH Global Hall Of Fame I was global Rookie Coach of The Year in 2002 having achieved remarkable success as the first ActionCOACH in Europe. Many of my clients have also received awards from their peers for their business improvements.