Ultimate Small Business Cheat Sheet: 25 Things To Do In The First 6 Months Of Business

Remember in high school when you depended on Cliff’s Notes to get you through your next couple of tests? Sometimes condensing information to its bare bones isn’t only convenient, it’s downright necessary.

We’ll bring you 25 points to consider within the first 6 months of your business.

Determine Your Capital
Even people who know businesses overspend, so make sure you know what you can get away with (and be realistic when it comes to estimating profit.)

Pick a Name that Stands Out
What’s in a name? Sometimes a memorable one is the difference between success and failure. Same goes for your domain name.

Establish Your Goals in Your Business Plan
And make them extremely specific. This doesn’t mean your goal can’t change, only that you need to have clear objectives so you know what you’re working toward.

Decide on Advertising
Whether it’s word of mouth, social media or print, you’ll need to have your specific strategies clearly defined before you can start to reach people.

Designate a Team Member for Marketing
Even if that person wasn’t hired to be a full-time marketer.

Continuously Evaluate Your Location
Most leases have their time limits, and your location is going to be extremely important.

Map Out a Legal Structure
Whether you’re a sole proprietorship or an LLC, make sure your accountant, attorney and you are on the same page.

Get an EIN
Keep yourself separate and apart from your business with an EIN, so you’re not paying for workers out of your own bank account.

Tech Matters
Get Your website up as quickly as possible, and make sure it reflects the style you want in your business.

Get a License
State and local laws vary, so this will be a good time to look into the rules.

Set up Accounts on Social Media
Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn are all great (and free) ways to talk to your customers, so set up those profiles and start posting.

Start Where You Are
It’s never going to be perfect, and you can’t wait for that anyway. If you have a way to make money, then start now.

Get Business Cards
Networking can be tough with business cards flying around everywhere, but they’re still a handy way to connect.

Set Up a Bank Account
You’ll need to determine how you’re going to pay your employees, whether that’s through traditional check or more modern forms like PayPal.

Keep Accounting Simple
Choose the least complicated form of program based on your business (you’ll probably have to hire someone initially.)

Delegate Responsibilities
Company owners tend to take on far too much, so don’t let that happen to you.

Choose Your Communication System
You’re likely going to keep in touch through your smartphone, so pick an app or method that works for you.

Find a Mentor
This will be a difficult 6 months, and it’s easy to get dejected, so find someone who’s been through it who will chat with you.

Set Up Your HR
Many companies feel this expense is better abolished or outsourced, but one caveat is that employee relations can play a heavier role in productivity than you think.

Find the Right Insurance
If you can’t afford to repair the property if a natural disaster or criminal act occurs, you need to have maximum coverage.

Hire Slowly
You may make a mistake when estimating the demand, so start slowly and then add.

Track Your Progress
It’s not just good for you, but for investors as well.

File for Trademarks
Copyrights are a big deal today, so don’t leave any stone unturned here on your intellectual property.

Keep Your Digital Data Safe
Encrypt, encrypt, encrypt. Don’t take a chance of having your business hacked with mere firewalls.

Work On Your Sales Pitch
At the end of 6 months, your elevator pitch should be more detailed and thoughtful than at the beginning.

Regardless of how you set your business up, stay motivated during this difficult time if success doesn’t happen right off the bat! You’ve got the tools, now you just need to do the work

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