As I mentioned in my first blog entry, I have written a book aimed at those who are thinking about starting a new business. The book covers several important topics for a new entrepreneur, and after reading it you will know more about how to start a business development process, what are the success factors of a new company and how to make a realistic business plan. You will also find several real-life case studies and practical exercises in the book. All the advice is based on more than 25 years of experience in training and guiding others into entrepreneurship.
Our company has organized hundreds of training courses since 1992. During the courses thousands of people have had the chance to discover their potential as entrepreneurs, and we have seen more than 3 000 new businesses established. In the book all this experience has been put into an easy-to-read package. The book can also be ordered online.
Start with what you have
The name of the book, What Do You Have In Your Hand?, is our motto. It is also the core question we pose to the people who attend the NEBA business start up training program.
If you want to be an entrepreneur you can start with something that you already have. What can you do? What skills do you have? What do you have in your hand?
I became an entrepreneur in 1990. At that time I was finishing my studies in a university in Finland, and there was a severe economic crisis in Europe. It was hard to find a job, and the employment situation was difficult for many young people who graduated from the university at that time.
For me the solution was to become an entrepreneur – to start my own business. And it all started with a few simple questions I asked myself: “What do I have in my hand right now? What can I do that someone is willing to pay me for?”.
I’m a practical guy so I took a pen and a sheet of paper and started to make a list of the things I thought I can do. I have to admit that the list was not very long but there was one thing that helped me to get started. During and after my studies I had carried out some research projects for a big local company, and I had seen how the company was collecting customer feedback. I had an idea how this could be done in a more effective way.
This became the basic foundation for my business idea, and later the same year I started my company. I jumped straight in to the business and made many mistakes during the first years, but there is one thing I did right. I would still start with the same question: “What do I have in my hand right now?”
I want to encourage everyone who is thinking about starting a business to do the same thing: make a list of things you think you can do and like to do. Then ask yourself if there is someone who would pay you for doing one or more of these tasks. If you see that there is a potential way of selling what you can do, step into the business development process and discover your business potential.
We are here to help
You don’t have to have a business degree from university to start a successful business, but it helps a lot if you know how to make a proper business plan before starting your business. The NEBA business start up program is designed to help you to become an entrepreneur and make a living for yourself.
As I mentioned, I started my career as an entrepreneur at a time when many people became unemployed after finishing their studies. Today thousands of students around the world are facing a similar situation in their life. We believe that universities and other educational organizations can help their students by starting to offer business startup training to them.
If you need online business training or want to offer it to someone else, we at NEBA are here to help you!
The author, Jouni Suonpää is the founder and chairman of NEBA (North European Business Academy). Jouni has extensive personal experience in entrepreneurship and has been training and consulting people on entrepreneurship for more than 25 years. He is also a founder and co-partner in many new businesses.