Business for Beginners

ISBN: 9781402203923

By: Francis McGuckin

Published: 03/01/2005

What entrepreneurs really need to know.

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Most small business guides claim to be for entrepreneurs, but either talk over their heads or treat them like they have no business savvy. The solution? Business for Beginners. Written by an entrepreneur, it targets the 13 big questions (and all the other questions that come with) that entrepreneurs need to consider to build a successful business, with the answers that will set them on the right track. Frances McGuckin and SmallBizPro are dedicated to reaching the small business owner, speaking constantly across North America and working closely with the small business associations that entrepreneurs turn to for help. This book contains clear advice along with case studies, examples, checklists and “success strategies.” The essential advice includes: - Knowing where to start - Understanding legal and tax requirements - Understanding financial statements - Organizing accounting and paperwork - Developing a winning business plan - Building entrepreneurial skills - Marketing on a budget

About the Author

Francis McGuckin

Frances McGuckin is an award-winning, bestselling author, business management consultant, small business expert, professional speaker and columnist. She travels across North America delivering passionate, powerful, information-packed and motivational messages to small business owners. Business for Beginners has sold over 125,000 copies in its three editions. Her home-based businesses, SmallBizPro.com Services and Eastleigh Publications, are in their 20th year. She has been actively teaching entrepreneurship for 18 years, teaching the first accredited Equine Entrepreneurship course at Kwantlen University College in Langley, British Columbia. For more information, visit her Web site at www.smallbizpro.com.


Table of Contents

Follow your entrepreneurial dream

CHAPTER 1: Where Do You Start?
Are you ready to be an entrepreneur?
Why are you starting your own business?
The downside of self-employment.
Seven skills for success
Do you have management skills?
Why do businesses fail?

CHAPTER 2: How Do You Find the Right Business?
What types of businesses are available?
Which business is right for you?
Why are businesses sold?
What is a business opportunity?
How do you assess a potential business?
Seven rules for a successful purchase

CHAPTER 3: What Is a Financial Statement?
Why do we need accounting?
How do the figures get there?
What information is in a financial statement?
Accounting terms and definitions
How to analyze a financial statement
The five-minute financial test

CHAPTER 4: How Do You Research the Market?
Does your idea have market potential?
Will your business solve clients’ problems?
My top ten home-based businesses
What do you research?
Where do you find research material?

CHAPTER 5: Why Do You Need a Lawyer?
What does a lawyer do?
How do you find the right lawyer?
What is a buy-sell agreement?
What if legal problems arise?
What do all those legal terms mean?

CHAPTER 6: What Start-Up Expenses Will You Incur?
What type of building should you lease?
What communications systems should you use?
What office and computer equipment do you need?
What office supplies do you need?
What types of insurance might you need?
What is risk management?
Step-by-step start-up checklists

CHAPTER 7: What Is a Business Plan?
Why do you need a business plan?
Where do you find help with business plans?
What is in a business plan?
How do you prepare projections?
Who will lend you money?
Doing it right: Your business plan checklists

CHAPTER 8: Should You Incorporate Your Business?
What is a proprietorship or partnership?
Is a partnership a good idea?
What is an incorporated business?
How do proprietorships and corporations differ?
Comparing balance sheet differences
Should you incorporate your business?

CHAPTER 9: What Are You Required to Do By Law?
Local government approval
Name registration
Incorporation and licenses
Bank accounts
State and local taxes
Employer Identification Number, forms, and payroll
Workers’ compensation or state disability insurance
Other licensing agencies
Is business as simple as A-B-C and 1-2-3?

CHAPTER 10: How Do You Market Your Business?
What is a marketing plan?
What are the four Ps of marketing?
What is branding?
Put your plan together
How do you promote a business?
Which advertising media should you use?
How do you plan a marketing budget?

CHAPTER 11: How Do You Organize Your Accounting,
Time, and Paperwork?
How do you organize your files?
How do you organize your time and paperwork?
How do you set up your accounting?
What is a chart of accounts?
What does your accountant require?
How do you cost inventory?
Which business expenses are tax deductible?
What is a break-even point?
How do you record vehicle expenses?
Be nice to your accountant

CHAPTER 12: Your Home Office—Heaven or Hell?
Is a home office for you?
What’s heaven about a home office?
When is a home office hell?
What home office tax deductions are available?
Can you handle the home office challenges?

CHAPTER 13: What Will Your Story Be?
Traveling the entrepreneurial road
Las Vegas SBDC clients are all winners
Some Food for Thought: Family Food Distributors Inc.
Lost Job, Found Passion: PR Enterprises LLC
Kilts to the Hilt—Building on Change
Cashing in on Chores: Triangle Concierge Inc.
In closing

APPENDIX: Small Business Telephone and Internet Directory
Secretary of State offices
Websites and contact information
Useful small business websites



Format: Paperback

Length: 9 in
Width: 7 in
Weight: 22.00 oz
Page Count: 336 pages


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