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Published November 03, 2022
A weekly look at issues facing Wyoming business owners and entrepreneurs from the Wyoming Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network, a collection of business assistance programs at the University of Wyoming.
By Jill Kline, state director, Wyoming SBDC Network
John, from Cheyenne, recently sent me a note asking, “How soon can I expect to see some real growth in my new business?” That’s a good question and one that is on any new business owner’s mind. But it’s one that may have countless responses depending upon a variety of factors.
Each individual business has its own trajectory for startup, launch and growth depending on the industry, seasonal versus year-round business, market demand, competition, economic conditions and more. An entrepreneur’s grit -- or perseverance and work ethic -- plays an equally important role.
A startup takes planning, organization, market research, financial projections, connections in the industry and community, and legal considerations, not to mention a product or service that is in demand and profitable. When all of these factors are in place, an entrepreneur can expect some failures or setbacks, or the need for changes from the initial plan.
Let me break down the factors I mentioned a bit further. I like to believe that “grit” is uniquely a Wyoming trait, a trait that was born in Wyoming and one that all Wyoming entrepreneurs possess. Entrepreneurs with great abilities or talents in their industries or skills can only go so far if they lack the perseverance, work ethic and motivation necessary to successfully run their businesses.
Planning, organization and other essential work come into play to achieve success. Before a business opens its doors, an entrepreneur must do the significant groundwork. An entrepreneur can minimize risk by following logical steps to start a business.
The outcome from a simple internet search on “how to start a business” results in many step-by-step paths. Depending on the article, I found the number of steps can range from eight to 35. But, all of those steps led to the development of a strategic or business plan.
To summarize, an entrepreneur will want to know what problem to provide a solution to or what gap to fill in the industry. Using market research, potential answers will surface, allowing an entrepreneur to develop a path or strategy to begin. But the learning rarely ends. Pursuing a strategic approach can seem like an overwhelming process, but it’s necessary for success, especially if you’re hoping for growth and profit quickly. Following that path is where grit must kick in.
Understanding why it is important to plan, organize, conduct market research, develop financial projections and know as much about your industry as possible can help strategically determine the rate of growth you might expect. Markets and economic conditions change, and marketing strategies may need to be refined, which result in a constant cycle of modification to your approach. Having grit will not only help you form your strategy, but it also will allow you to make changes to your original plans when necessary.
The Wyoming SBDC Network can assist with every step of the process of starting or growing a business. One step you’ll likely discover in your internet search to start a business is to find a mentor or adviser. The experienced team at the Wyoming SBDC Network helps entrepreneurs break down tasks, interpret competitive intelligence, design an individualized plan, and implement or revamp strategies. Finally, the Wyoming SBDC Network can customize an entrepreneur’s experience by making connections to the vast array of resources available in Wyoming.
The Wyoming SBDC Network offers no-cost advising and technical assistance to help Wyoming entrepreneurs think about, launch, grow, reinvent or exit their business. In 2021, the Wyoming SBDC Network helped Wyoming entrepreneurs start 80 new businesses; support 4,077 jobs; and bring a capital impact of $9.2 million to the state. The Wyoming SBDC Network is hosted by UW with state funds from the Wyoming Business Council and funded, in part, through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration.
To ask a question, call 1-800-348-5194, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or write Dept. 3922, 1000 E. University Ave., Laramie, WY 82071-3922.