Are You Serious about Being in Business? Here’s How to Find Out . . .

A while back, I was one of the featured speakers at a conference for small business owners and one of the other speakers offered a list of things that all business owners must have in place in order to truly be in business and position themselves for success.  The speaker said, “If you don’t have all these things in place, you’re not really in business!”

This really stuck with me because there is a lot of validity to it.  With all the responsibilities of being a business owner, sometimes circumstances can get over whelming and some of the key things that should be in place to truly be in business tend to get pushed aside for “when there’s more time” (which will never happen) or get forgotten. 

Image courtesy of ddpavumba /

Image courtesy of ddpavumba /

Below is the list given by the speaker.  These are the things which all serious business owners must have in place in order to truly be in business and position themselves for success:

  1. I have business cards for myself and my team.
  2. I have a distinct phone line specifically for my business.
  3. I have a registered domain.
  4. I have a current website.
  5. I have an e-mail that corresponds with my business domain.
  6. I have a dedicated office or business space (even if it is home-based).
  7. I know what my target market is.
  8. I have a contact database system in place to communicate with my prospects.

As obvious as this list seems, half the participants at that conference did not meet all the requirements. I spoke to the same group of people again during another event, however, and I’m pleased to report that virtually all of the participants this time around met the above requirements (and more).

So here’s my question for you . . . Are YOU truly serious about being in business?  For those of you who can answer ‘yes’ to that question, what would you add to this list, if anything?  I’d love to hear your thoughts–please share them in the comment forum below.  Thanks!


7 thoughts on “Are You Serious about Being in Business? Here’s How to Find Out . . .

  1. While everything on that list is vital, I can almost hear Michael Gerber’s voice booming out from his classic ‘E-Myth Revisited’ tape series — reminding me that the ‘internal’ stuff might be even more important than the external tools & trappings of a business. Unfortunately, those internal ‘must haves’ can be a lot harder to nail down. I find fundamental questions like, “What is your primary aim?” and “Are you working in your business or ON your business?” much more challenging than updating my Web presence.

  2. I believe it is important to know “WHY” you do business, my underlying purpose.
    I also believe you should have a measurable goal, with specific time-frames.

  3. You’re spot on about the email. Nothing stumps me more when a client has a domain, yet the communicate via a yahoo or hotmail account. Most often this is because they don’t know how to administer the email backend, or setup an email client.

  4. Agree completely with the list. Another fundamental key in business or as this discussion, another question,
    “Do you deliver what you promis?” This can ruin a company’s reputation if one doesn’t deliver what he promises his or their clients.

  5. Another HUGE point is are you delivrring what you are promisin? Are you writing checks with your mouth your business practices cannot achieve? I would rather underpromise and OVERDELIVER. Gives your client the feeling they are special.

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