• Kurt Schmidt

Why Startups Aren’t All They’re Cracked Up to Be and Why It Doesn’t Matter

Typically, when we read about new businesses and entrepreneurs it’s all ‘this is the new Facebook’ or ‘how this business has really taken off in the last year’ and all too often, the media focus entirely on the glamour and success of entrepreneurism.

But the life of an entrepreneur is by no means an entirely glamorous one. Despite the best efforts of films like ‘The Social Network’.

Although highly rewarding once up and running, there will be many challenges to both you and any employees you may have in the early days of your startup. Between the large costs that are often incurred starting up a business, the mountain of admin that has to be taken care of once it’s off the ground, life in a startup can be tougher than it looks.

There’s no way around it: starting a business (and even working for a new business) is a big commitment. One that you and your employees need to be prepared for if it is going to succeed.

So here we address some of the bigger issues that can affect both you and your employees in the early days of your SME.

Admin will take over your life

With recent research conducted by cloud services provider BCSG showing that the average SME spends around 15 hours a week on admin tasks. That’s around 2 full working days, and £1,422 worth of productivity lost every week on things that quite simply need to get done.

‘Many of our clients come to us because they find that balancing their small business’s books is a bit overwhelming’ explains CEO of London-based freelancer and contractor accounting firm 3 Wise Bears.

And although services like 3 Wise Bears can help lighten the load when it comes to admin and paperwork, it’s an inevitable part of life running any startup or small business.

Your personal life will almost certainly be affected

Much like the title of the ill-fated ‘Wall Street’ sequel: money never sleeps.

With long nights, insomnia and periods of financial insecurity all part of the entrepreneurial landscape, many small business owners find their personal lives often lose out to the needs of the business.

And it’s no easier for those employed by start-ups either, with many finding themselves having to relocate numerous times for ‘the good of the company’.

But it’s not all bad news

Although not as glamorous as often portrayed, the life of the average small business is not all doom and gloom. There is some light at the end of the tunnel for those associated with smaller businesses.

While the early years will certainly be difficult for just about all of those involved with your SME, it’s important to remember that they will pass.

By making sure that your small business is grounded on some sound financial planning, you can reduce any financial strains as far as possible.

And by utilising services like cloud-based accounting firms, and document management software (if your budget allows of course) you can help to minimise the amount of time you and your employees spend taking care of admin, so you can make sure that more time is spent dealing with customers and clients directly, as well as ensuring that your workforce can take some very well-deserved rest.

The life of an SME can be hard, but these days we have technology on our side.

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