Entrepreneurship Financial Planning Leadership

Financial Questions to Ask Before Starting a Business

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It can be exciting to start a new business—especially if your product or service is something you feel passionately about. 

 But before you hang out your shingle, make sure you are ready financially. Here are some things to consider:

  • Do you have a long-term financial plan?
  • Do you know where you stand financially in terms of your big life goals? (paying off your house, retirement, travel, leaving a legacy, etc.)
  • Do you have a business plan? A simple plan includes:
    • An executive summary: 
      • mission statement 
      • product(s) or service(s)
      • leadership team
      • location
      • financial information
    • A company description:
      • Problems your business solves
      • Customers 
      • Competitive advantage
      • Experts on your team
    • Market analysis:
      • Industry outlook
      • Target market
      • What competitors are doing that works
      • How you could do it better
    • Company structure:
      • Legal structure (C or S corporation, partnership, sole proprietorship or LLC)
      • Organizational chart
    • Product(s) or service(s):
      • What you will sell/What services you will offer
      • How these will benefit customers
      • Intellectual property plans
      • R&D
    • Marketing strategy:
      • How you’ll attract and retain customers
      • Pricing
      • How sales will happen
    • Financial projections:

              Forecasted income statements, balances sheets, cash flow statements and capital expenditure budgets.

  • Can you afford to start a business now?
  • What are the tax aspects?
  • How will you get funding?
  • Do you have insurance for the business?

Go in with a Growth Mindset

If you go in with the attitude that you will learn a lot on the journey, you can weather the business ownership roller coaster. 

Beyond the nuts and bolts of the business, you will need to learn to lead yourself, and your employees. 

Personal leadership means caring for your own physical, emotional, spiritual and mental health. It asks you to fully show up for yourself:


Commit to being your highest and best self and living from this space. It takes determination to follow through with this commitment over time, and requires you to truly be aware when things are off-balance in any area. 

Fully aware of yourself, you can have this level of awareness with others. The world needs conscious leaders who can lead from a place of total awareness and wellbeing, able to prioritize the same values and commitment for their teams, customers and organizations.   

Hold yourself accountable

Develop practices that prioritize your wellbeing. 

When we remain accountable to ourselves and take full responsibility for our actions, emotions and way of being, we also stop relying on anything outside of ourselves to feel whole. 

We ultimately realize we hold the key to reaching our highest potential. We cannot expect from others what we are not willing to do ourselves. 

Invest in your growth 

There is no shame in hiring a therapist, coach or trainer, or taking a course or reading books to gain guidance, knowledge and support. 

We have the opportunity for continued growth and development over the course of our lives if we are willing. 

Put Together a Team of Professional Advisors

To run your business effectively, you will need a financial planner, an attorney, an insurance agent, a bookkeeper and a CPA. 

The Small Business Development Center and SCORE can provide free counseling and steer you to funding sources:

  • Banks
  • The Small Business Administration
  • Crowd-funding
  • Borrowing from family and friends
  • Having a side hustle to earn money (This can help you wait till you are ready financially to open your business.)

Have a Vision of Success

This will help you see how you are doing along the way. It can also help you as you consider when to expand, or when to quit.

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This content is developed from sources believed to be providing accurate information, and provided by Kelly Financial Planning. It may not be used for the purpose of avoiding any federal tax penalties. Please consult legal or tax professionals for specific information regarding your individual situation. The opinions expressed and material provided are for general information, and should not be considered a solicitation for the purchase or sale of any security.