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Last month we shared the first five of 10 steps to start a business. We continue the article this month with the last five of the 10 steps. Keep in mind these are basic guidelines to assist you with laying out your written plan to move forward as a new startup. 
Step 6: Get Licenses and Permits
Paperwork is a part of the process when you start your own business. There are a variety of small business licenses and permits that may apply to your situation, depending on the type of business you are starting and where you are located. You will need to research what licenses and permits apply to your business during the start-up process. 
So many register their business and obtain their permits and licenses before they have done their research only to find out there were codes that hindered them from moving forward. Save yourself time and make calls to the right people to have your questions answered before you go to the expense of permits, licenses, creating or designing signs, or even the types of products you wish to sell or items to manufacture. 
Step 7: Choose Your Accounting System
Small businesses run most effectively when there are systems in place. One of the most important systems for a small business is an accounting system.

Your accounting system is necessary in order to create and manage your budget, set your rates and prices, conduct business with others, and most importantly, to file your taxes. You can set up your accounting system yourself, or hire an accountant to take away some of the guesswork. If you decide to get started on your own, make sure you consider these questions that are vital when choosing accounting software. There are many inexpensive and easy accounting tools and software to be found if your budget is a factor.

Step 8: Set Up Your Business Location
Setting up your place of business is important for the operation of your business, whether you will have a home office, a shared or private office space, or a retail location.

You will need to think about your location, equipment, and overall setup, and make sure your business location works for the type of business you will be doing. You will also need to consider if it makes more sense to buy or lease your commercial space. 

Step 9: Get Your Team Ready

If you will be hiring employees, now is the time to start the process. Make sure you take the time to outline the positions you need to fill, and the job responsibilities that are part of each position. The Small Business Administration has an excellent guide to hiring your first employee that is useful for new small business owners.
If you are not hiring employees, but instead outsourcing work to independent contractors, now is the time to work with an attorney to get your independent contractor agreement in place and start your search. If utilizing independent contractors don’t forget you 1099’s. 
Lastly, if you are a true solopreneur (one man/woman show) hitting the small business road alone, you may not need employees or contractors, but you will still need your own support team. This team can be comprised of a mentor, small business coach, or even your family, and serves as your go-to resource for advice, motivation and reassurance when the road gets bumpy. 
Step 10: Promote Your Small Business
Once your business is up and running, you need to start attracting clients and customers. You'll want to start with the basics by writing a unique selling proposition (USP) and creating a marketing plan. Then, explore as many small business marketing ideas as possible so you can decide how to promote your business most effectively. If that is too formal, make sure the vision you have in your mind for your business is transferred to paper. To succeed, you must have a written plan. Look it at it every day before you walk out the door. This will keep you focused and committed to your journey.

Once you have completed these business start-up activities, you will have all of the most important bases covered. Keep in mind that success doesn't happen overnight. But use the plan you've created to consistently work on your business, and you will increase your chances of success.

Join the Aztec Chamber of Commerce. We are here to help you walk thru the process with our goal to promote, promote, promote, you and your business!

Dealing with codes and regulations? Drop by the Aztec Chamber of Commerce to pick up a complimentary booklet of City of Aztec Guidelines or go to the City of Aztec’s website at www.aztecnm.gov. to download your copy. For more information contact the Director of the Community Development Department Steven Saavedra or visit his office at 201 W. Chaco St. in Aztec. Contact Mr. Saavedra at (505) 334-7605 or via email at ssaavedra@aztecnm.gov.

Ribbon Cuttings 
A ribbon cutting will be held for Adjusted Chiropractic Center, 1409 W. Aztec Blvd., Ste. 8, at 5 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 2. Join owner Lisa McClain to tour her facility, to learn more about good health and for an evening of fun and entertainment. For appointments, office hour are 8 a.m. - 6 p.m. For more information, call Adjusted Chiropractic Center at 505-333-7929 or visit their Face Book page at www.facebook.com/adjustedchiropractic.
Advertising Benefits
As a Chamber Member, one of your biggest benefits is advertising your business, sales, programs, products, or services in the Chamber’s Weekly newsletter and Facebook page. Send your business cards, flyers, brochures and/or announcements via jpg to the chamber no later than Friday, before the next Tuesday posting to Chamber Members. Your advertisement must arrive no later than 5 pm on Friday. Each member receives one free posting each week. Should you desire additional posting, we can accommodate you with a small fee of $25 per posting. Please send your items to aztecchamber.com.
Annual Banquet
Business of the Year, Educator of the Year, Citizen of the Year
It’s almost time to recognize and celebrate Aztec’s three favorite heroes: Business of the Year (any business that is a member of the Aztec Chamber of Commerce); Educator of the Year (nominate your child’s favorite teacher/educator); and Citizen of the Year (an individual who has given back to our community or paid it forward to many in our area). Go to aztecchamber.com to download the form and submit your names to the Chamber now!
“Meet Me at the Diner” 50’s Banquet
Do you love the 1950’s? Do you still have that poodle skirt, leather jacket, or your favorite black and white saddle oxford shoes, and are ready to slip them on again? Join us Saturday, Sept. 30, for the Chamber’s Annual Banquet “Meet Me at the Diner” event. Compete for the: Best Dressed 1950’s Female Costume; Best Dressed 1950’s Male Costume; or Best Dressed 1950’s Couples Costume. The banquet will be held at the Aztec Senior Community Center.
We are seeking volunteers to work on the decorations, menu, sponsorship, silent and live auctions and entertainment committees as well as volunteers to help with setup. Contact Vangie Neil at 505.215.9888 if interested. Donations of décor as well as monetary funds are welcomed. 
Sponsorships and Table Sponsorships
Members will be receiving their sponsorship packages soon. We hope you will join us by purchasing a table. Event sponsorship is also available. Call Vangie Neil at 505.215.9888 for more information to promote your name for this event.
As the Chamber continues to evolve, so does our look. We will unveil the new Aztec Chamber of Commerce Logo that evening.
Note: One hundred (100%) percent of your dollars raised go to help the Chamber with Business Luncheons, workshops, materials, supplies and all that would help the Chamber - help our members prosper and grow!
Luncheons
Thank you Chamber members and guests who joined us for our July Chamber Business Luncheon with Guest Speaker, Humorist, Journalist, Author, and Counselor, Ron Price and his topic, “the Benefits of Laughter.”  You can call Ron Price at Productive Outcomes, 505-324-6328, to learn more about his services and the release of his next book scheduled for October 2017.  
Our next luncheon is Aug. 16 at Noon. Visit our website aztechamber.com to learn more. 
Business After Hours
Thank you Neil Agency Auctioneers for the July Business After Hours at the Microtel Inn & Suites in Aztec. Visit aztecchamber.com for information on our upcoming August after hours event.
The Aztec Chamber of Commerce is not affiliated with the City of Aztec. Funding for our nonprofit comes from donations, memberships and events staged by the Chamber. Thank you for the opportunity to serve you and for your investment in the Aztec Chamber of Commerce.
 

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