6 Questions you need to answer when planning a business, startup or idea

Starting a business, a startup or conceptualising an idea can be exciting and hard work but there is a need to focus on the basics so that you can then go to the next step by formulating and ‘fleshing out’ the idea. I have 6 questions I ask people when looking at a new idea for a business, product, or concept. What, Why, How, Who, Where and When. These may seem very simple and easy questions to answer but often people are too focused on the idea or getting customers, creating logos, renting office space and forget the basics. Answering these questions is one of the most important things you do before you spend any money or time on trying to get customers or move forward. You can change the answers at any time and the answers can some flexibility. Having answers that are too broader can hinder the idea and the need to focus is needed so that you resources are used efficiently and effectively.

What is it? What are you selling or creating? What are the services, products, ideas? What are you hoping to achieve with this service, product, idea?

Why are you selling or creating the service, product or idea? If its only for money, start again or trash the idea. Why you are doing something is the main driver for your business or idea, if you are doing it only for money you will quickly lose interest if it is not something you are passionate about or have experience doing. If the main reason is working less hours, or more time with family, to make the world a better place, to improve the industry, bringing a new idea into the market, then you have a driver and the motivation to succeed. Why is probably the most important question out of the six questions.

How are you going to do it? What approach will you take? Do you have the money to start?  if not, how are you going to get the money? How will you distribute the product? How will you market it?

Who are your customers? Who will be your suppliers? Who will market the product, service, etc? Who will sell the product? Who will be you customers 5 years from now? Who will

Where are you setting up the business? Where will the office be? Where will you ship to? Where will the product come from? then go back to How and ask yourself How again.

When will you start the business? When will you break-even? When will you feel comfortable? When will you open another office or location? When will you exit the business?

These are only some of the questions you should be asking yourself when thinking about a startup, business, or idea. Each of the six questions should be asked when you approach any facet of your business. These questions should be used for ideas, projects, pitching, allowing you or your audience to easily understand the What? Why? How? Who? Where? and When? Answering these easy question can make your business run smoothly and you will avoid confusion between people internally and externally.