Advisers essential to business success
Seventh in an 11-part series about starting a business.
Roger Pierce, Special to QMI Agency
Advisers will help your business succeed by sharing their expertise, connections and resources. They will help you to avoid costly mistakes.
You’ll need to recruit three types of advisers: a volunteer mentor, paid advisers and peer advisers.
A mentor is a person with seasoned business experience who can advise and coach you for free. Most mentors are willing to give their time because someone likely mentored them when they were starting up.
Write a job description summarizing your ideal mentor; for example, you may want a mentor with related industry experience. Equipped with a clear profile, share it with your personal and professional network. Approach a suitable prospect and start with a chat over a cup of coffee to see if there is synergy.
You’ll sleep better at night knowing a business lawyer is handling your lease agreements, customer contracts, online privacy policies, shareholder agreements and incorporation paperwork.
Accountants will save you more money than they charge by minimizing your taxes. Your accountant can also handle all that pesky paperwork from the Canada Revenue Agency for you.
A small business banker will help you to secure financing for startup and growth. They can also advise you on investments and financial planning.
The famous author Napoleon Hill first introduced the idea of a Mastermind Group in the early 1900s. A Mastermind Group usually consists of a small circle of other business owners who share the same level of success but want to achieve more. Monthly meetings of Mastermind Groups are designed to listen to the challenges of each participant, share advice and brainstorm solutions.
Any adviser you choose to work with should appreciate your business vision but possess unique abilities and fresh perspectives. For this reason, you don’t want advisers who are exactly like you.
Next installment: Learn about raising money for your new business.
— Startup expert Roger Pierce has launched 10 businesses in 20 years. Through his company, BizLaunch, and his book and columns, he’s advised thousands of startups worldwide. E-mail email@example.com.