• Give a Gift
  • Customer Service
  • Promotions
  • Videos
  • Blogs
  • Win
  • Games

September 15, 2008

Six Musts for Future Moguls

Truth time: Fewer than half of all new businesses are still alive four years after they start.

woman sitting on conference room table

Photo Credit: Steen Sunland

Special Offer

We asked Jennifer Kushell, entrepreneur and author of Secrets of the Young & Successful, how to make sure your start-up survives — and thrives.

1. Be passionate about the work.
You'll never muster the mojo necessary to get your business off the ground unless you absolutely believe in the product or service you're peddling.

2. Do your homework.
Seems basic, but many entrepreneurs don't test their products in the marketplace. If you've designed a cool new line of T-shirts, try hawking them on eBay. A paying customer is a sign you've got a viable product.

3. Take advantage of helping hands.
There are ample resources available to upstarts; start with SCORE (score.org) for free workshops.

4. Be thorough about start-up costs.
Novices often lowball their costs, overlooking less-obvious expenses, like deposits on leased space.

5. Don't bet the farm.
It's especially difficult these days to secure bank financing unless your credit is stellar. Before maxing out your credit cards, carefully consider how much you're prepared to lose should the business go belly-up.

6. Don't go it alone.
This one's a biggie. You open yourself up to massive legal vulnerability unless you incorporate or create a limited-liability company (LLC), both strategies designed to contain your liability. Don't even think about hanging a shingle until you've consulted a lawyer about this.

Click here to read 5 success stories — women who started their own business and succeeded!

Connect with Marie Claire:
daily giveaway
Go to the Beach

Go to the Beach

enter now
You Know You Want More
More From Money Advice
Smart, Sexy Money

Live your richest life — no matter what you earn — with these no-fail tips from LearnVest's money guru Alexa von Tobel.

The Rich Girl's Money Rules to Live By

Want to earn more? Spend smarter? Live a glamorous life? Take charge of your money with our financial cheat sheet.

Real-Life Revenge of the Nerds

A new book suggests that teenage outcasts are the most likely to succeed as adults.

post a comment

Special Offer
Link Your Marie Claire Account to Facebook

Marie Claire already has an account with this email address. Link your account to use Facebook to sign in to Marie Claire. To insure we protect your account, please fill in your password below.

Forgot Password?

Thanks for Joining

Your information has been saved and an account has been created for you giving you full access to everything marieclaire.com and Hearst Digital Media Network have to offer. To change your username and/or password or complete your profile, click here.

Your accounts are now linked

You now have full access to everything Marie Claire and Hearst Digital Media Network have to offer. To change your settings or profile, click here.